"Can't open/create file" in *any* external drive?

Discussion in 'Paragon Drive Backup Product Line' started by Ellen, Dec 24, 2012.

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  1. Ellen

    Ellen Registered Member

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    I'm using Paragon HD Manager 11 suite & whenever I've tried to copy a partition to an external drive the last few days, I get this error message right at the beginning of the backup: "can't open/create file". At first I thought the problem might be due to a disk error in the external drive I was using so I ran chkdsk but no problem were found. Then, I tried copying a partition to my other external drives & the same thing happened. OTOH, I am able to copy partitions to the 2nd HD in my PC. I've run chkdsk for my C & program partitions but it didn't find any disk errors there either.

    Does anyone have any ideas about what can be causing this error message with all my external drives & what I can do about it? TIA.
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2012
  2. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    Is there any chance your externals are formatted as FAT32? If so, the maximum filesize is 4GB and trying to allocate a larger size file will return an error message even if there is lots of space on the drive.

    You can reduce the split-size of your archive if it is set to over 4GB or the other solution is to reformat your external drive as NTFS. Formatting will cause whatever is stored on the drive to be lost so take precautions. I believe Microsoft still has a program called Convert that will do it without losing the existing data (please verify though).
     
  3. Ellen

    Ellen Registered Member

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    SeekForever, thanks for your reply. When I said that I "copy" partitions, I meant that I image them, not that I back up files. I'm sorry about using misleading terminology in the first message.

    One external drive is FAT32, but the others are NTFS. Also, I've been using Paragon HDM for years for both types of external drives without this error message.
     
  4. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    I figured you were imaging and the image files can be over 4GB depending on how the defaults are set up. However, this doesn't seem to be your problem.

    Have you tried booting the rescue CD and making an image from it to the external? This takes Windows out of the equation.

    Have you installed anything new or made other changes?

    Any indications the USB ports are bad or OK? Can you read files from the USB drive? Can you copy a large file from your internal HD to the USB OK?
     
  5. Ellen

    Ellen Registered Member

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    I ran the manufacturer's diagnostics for the USB ports & it says they're fine. Then I booted to Paragon's startup CD & I *was* able to backup each of the partitions to one of the NTFS external drives which I haven't been able to backup to when running Paragon from XP. So, what might cause XP to prevent Paragon from opening or creating backup files in at least this external drive? (I'll make sure I can backup to the other external drives using Paragon's CD after the current backup is completed.)

    I haven't installed any new programs since these errors began but I've continued to do updates of security programs I use. Thanks very much for your suggestions.
     
  6. JosephB

    JosephB Registered Member

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    Ellen,
    ... Just a thought ...
    1. Is there any chance that your AntiVirus or Anti-Malware or Firewall Pgm's - Realtime Protection/"Guard" is preventing Paragon from writing to your External drive ?
    .... What happens if you go into your Antivirus/Anti-Malware/Firewall Pgms (or from ist system tray icon) and you "Disable" their Realtime/Guard's and then run the Paragon Bkup will it work then ?

    2. Have you recently started running Paragon under a windows limited user Logon where as before ou were running under an xp Administrators Logon ?
     
  7. Ellen

    Ellen Registered Member

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    Joseph,

    2. I checked & I'm still not using a Limited account.

    1. I can't check that out yet because right after rebooting, a pop-up message said that there were disk errors & I needed to run chkdsk on the external drive, which I'm doing now. Could disk errors prevent Paragon from opening files on the USB drive when using Windows but not when using the CD? If the CD is in Linux (which I think it is), could the disk errors be less consequential than they are for Windows?

    If not, I was thinking of something else Windows-related which might be the problem. Some time before the Paragon errors started (although I'm not sure how long before), I went into Computer Management| Services & Applications| Services & disabled various services which seemed to be related to remote connections. Can the disabling of any of the services which are shown in the attached file prevent Paragon from opening files on the USB drive for imaging?
     

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  8. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    I doubt you will find any disk errors since accessing the drive with the Linux OS probably caused the "dirty bit" to be set which triggers the disk error msg on bootup.

    Have a look in the Windows Event Viewer and see if there are any possible clues. Problem is that often things look like a problem but are just normal.
     
  9. JosephB

    JosephB Registered Member

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    Ellen,

    Yes, as Seekforever said, check the Event Logs.
    ... If Event logs do *not* reveal any warnings or errors (Check both Application and System Logs - and paste them in your thread, for us to view what you got)

    ... and you have tried disabling AntiVirus/AntiMalware/Firewall - HIPS Guards (did you install/get a pgm update. i.e new versions of the security pgms)

    ... is there any chance that the External drives are going into a Standby/spin down State where they did *not* do that before ?? ---> Try accessing the External Drive (windows explorer, execute dir cmd, etc) a Minute before performing the Paragon Backup to them - did it make a difference ??

    ... I don't know if this could make a difference or not, but you could try "Re-Enabling"
    the Service "SSDP Discovery Service (Enables discovery of UPnP devices (maybe plug and play External Drives ??)

    ... BTW, you said you ran a Chkdsk on C:,
    but did you run a Chkdsk on the External Drive to check for errors ??
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2012
  10. Ellen

    Ellen Registered Member

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    Joseph, SeekForever,

    I'm sorry I couldn't get back here for a few days. First, here's the latest: When "chkdsk /r" finally finished & I retried Paragon, it still didn't work. Then I thought that maybe the scripts were not working, in contrast to the program as a whole.

    So I ran a new "Smart backup" without one of the scripts I had created earlier. It worked!! Then I created new scripts & now they're working too. The old & new ones look the exactly the same though. Do you think an XP update could somehow interact with the scripts to cause them not to work anymore even though the old & new scripts appear to be identical, or do you think the original files must have gotten corrupted in a way which isn't visible when looking at the scripts?

    I tried out your suggestions before getting the program to work & in case this might help anyone else, here are the answers:

    The only anomaly in the Event Viewer| Applications was the service "CI" which kept starting up. That turned out to be an MS service, C:\System Volume Information\catalog.wci, which "Indexes contents and properties of files on local and remote computers; provides rapid access to files". Do you think it's necessary to keep that service activated?

    I had tried the following which you had suggested: disabling the AV/AS/Firewalls I use, checking to see if the external drives had spun down, re-enabling the Service "SSDP Discovery Service", & runnig chkdsk on the external drive. (That's why it took so long - because the external drive is 2 TB.) But, it turns out in this case, the problem was that for some reason my old scripts suddenly stopped working. If you can think of any reason that might have happened, please let me know. Thanks for your efforts in helping to solve the problem.
     
  11. JosephB

    JosephB Registered Member

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    Ellen,

    Glad that backup is working for you now !

    Questions:

    ... Just to understand
    1. By any chance, Were your "old" Scripts generated to overwrite/replace the same Archive Name each time they were run ??

    2. When you ran the Smart Backup and then created and ran New Scripts did you create a differnt Archive Name than the Archive Name used in the "old" Scripts that failed?
    .... If yes, to both of above questions, then my guess is that the Archive files got corrupted somehow (backup was interrupted, pc locked up - rebooted, etc) during the backup process and then they could not be overwritten/replaced in a future execution of the Backup Archive script.


    BTW, I can't speak for Seekforever, but
    I always have my generated Scripts set to create 'Unique" Archive Names each time they are run (it appends a Date Suffix to the end of the Archive Name). Then you will have multiple Archive Backups on the External Drive and if one Archive Backup gets corrupted you can use an older previous Archive Backup.
    ... Then, just periodically go to the GUI - Archive Tab Window and delete the "very old" Backup Archives when you need to free up space on your external drive to fit more archive backups on it.
     
  12. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    It's hard to say what happened to your script files. One would think they would be readonly but an unexpected computer crash could upset them. I don't really see Windows Update doing it because it would more likely upset the running of the program for many people. OTOH, strange things do happen.

    I don't fool with Paragon's scripting language and it is one thing that, IMO, Acronis is way better. You don't need to fool with low-level scripting to do most tasks a normal user would want to do. E.G., you can't automatically verify a newly created archive with Paragon just by ticking a box.

    My Paragon images are to back up the C drive containing OS and Apps only. My important data files are elsewhere and I back them up with a program that doesn't stuff them into a proprietary container file. So I only image when I feel I should since there is little to be lost should my C drive crash a week or two after the last backup. I just run through the wizard to make a full image.

    You don't need to run Indexing on the drives. IIRC, you can tick a box in the partitions Properties in Windows Explorer to control whether or not the drive is indexed or I guess you could shut off the service. If you find yourself searching a lot of media files for example then I'd leave it on.

    I used to run around (at least for a while) back in the XP days turning off services, changing the location of the swapfile, etc. Never really made much of a difference for what I was doing and sometimes caused problems and they sometimes got magically turned back on. Given the horsepower and scheduling algorithm of most modern PCs there is little to be gained unless you are a high-powered gamer trying to put every CPU cycle to the game. But that's my view, you are welcome to yours, of course!
     
  13. Ellen

    Ellen Registered Member

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    Joseph,

    1. I also have my scripts create Unique Archive Names each time they are run by adding a Date Suffix

    2. Yes, I gave them different names.


    My PC was freezing a lot lately till I realized that it happened when Malwarebytes was running along with the other anti-malware programs. So maybe those frequent, recent freezeups are the cause of the corruption.

    I usually use Win. Explorer to delete old files. Is there any benefit of doing it through Paragon's GUI?

    There's one Paragon bug which I run into a lot which seems like it would be simple to fix. When I'm in the tab for "Scheduled Tasks", if I right click on a script, click Properties, edit the comments or schedule, then click either "apply" or "ok", I always get an error message "error saving contents of the page(s)". But then if I click "cancel", I get out of that screen & the change has been made. Does this happen to you too?

    I normally edit the comments to differentiate one script from another but do you know if there's any reason the name of the script can't be changed?

    Thanks for your input.
     
  14. Ellen

    Ellen Registered Member

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    I tried out Acronis last year but when I needed to restore my C partition, the zipped files couldn't be read. I stopped using it at that point although I agree it has some features (like auto-verification & auto-duplication of the b/u file) which were useful. Have you ever had a problem with it?

    That makes a lot of sense. Which other backup program do you use? I use xxcopy for backing up certain folders & I've used it occasionally for backing up non-C partitions too.

    Thanks for letting me know how to turn off indexing. I did that earlier tonight although some files which were Adobe-related wouldn't allow that.

    I know what you mean. I've only set the C drive & 2nd internal HD to have a swap file but my other drives somehow end up with them too occasionally. Do you ever limit the maximum & minimum sizes of the swap file now so that the size doesn't keep changing, or have you given up on that too?

    Thanks very much for your replies.
     
  15. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    I ran Acronis for years and the only problem I had with it was a bad verification which was due to a flakey SATA disk cable. However, I only do full, non-scheduled images. The reason I abandoned Acronis is every new version was bug-riddled and the situation never improved - it seemed release decisions were driven by the marketing department not the engineering department. They changed the UI and I didn't like it and the program started doing some things automatically which I didn't like. For example, the default was to run verifies on existing archives at various times. So you could start up your machine and then want to turn it off but it wouldn't because Acronis was doing a verify.

    I don't consider Paragon's UI to be the greatest thing on earth but I can live with it. It seems imaging programs by their very nature require a bit more understanding by the user and you have to keep your mind sharp to ensure you don't restore things to where you didn't want them restored. IMO, what they need to do is to get a group of "dumb-users" who have never run the program before and tell them to make an image, restore an image, etc and see what questions they get and then make it better. Having developers who understand how they set things up do this is inadequate.



    I use SyncBack. There are free and paid versions. I now run a paid one that allows versioning. There are others like Karen's Replicatior, Google will find them.

    I did set a maximum on XP but I haven't done anything with Windows 7; it just runs with the defaults.
     
  16. JosephB

    JosephB Registered Member

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    Ellen,

    .... Any chance that you may have in the past edited the old Script that gave you a problem where the Archive name syntax may have been altered accidently edited to an invalid archive name path syntax ? --- OR --- maybe Windows froze while you had a Script opened for editing and the Script File may have gotton corrupted o_O
    ... Chances are that this is why your Old Script was getting the "Can't Open ..." coiuld have been invalid archive name path sytax in the old Script File or Script File got corrupted if windows "hung" (and had to be restarted) while it was open for edit. ... Just a real guess at this point, in time.

    .... I like viewing my Backups in the paragon GUI - Archive Tab View becuase I can easily view when I created them, as well as, the Comment field of the comment i entered, when I Created the Backup (either hard coded in the particualr Script and more importantly for the Comments that I entere into the On-Demand - GUI Screen Backups).

    ... If I was to Delete the Backup Archives directly via Windows Explorer, then I would be left with Grayed-out Backup Archive Entries in the GUI - Archive Tab View because they would still be left in Paragon's - "Archive Catalog Database" . So, I find it easiest to jusr Right Click the Archive Entry Line to "Delete" in the Archive Tab View and choose 'Delete" - which Deletes the Archive's Files on the backup external drive, as well as, deleting/removing the the Archive Entry from paragon's Archive (Catalog) Database.


    .... No, this does not happen to me. I am currently using an older versiom - Paid Version - "Backup & Recovery Home 10". I think you will need to open a Support Ticket with Paragon to address that issue.
    .... BTW, out of curiosity, what version are you uisng ?

    ... I only have a few Scheduled Scripts, so I do not use the Scheduler GUI Tab that much. Then I just create On-Demand Backups via Smart backup GUI wizards interactively, when I need to create them.

    .... I just tried and ts not easy. .... It appears the the GUI Scheduler Tab, has no easy way of doing a "Rename". It looks like the only way is to choose Edit (opens in notepad), File Save it to another FileName. In bottom half of gui screen - right click "Add Scirpt" , then choose Schedule it where it allow you to give the Script a Name and then Delete the Original Script in the Top half Scheduler Window.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
  17. JosephB

    JosephB Registered Member

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    Ellen,
    I added Paragon's auto-verification command script syntax (the same as Paragon's GUI - "Integrity Verification" Check) into my Scheduled Paragon Backup Scripts.
     
  18. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    This certainly is the way to do it but it is pretty silly to expect a lot of users to edit a script.

    Does the script allow users to type in different filenames or the comments for that matter?

    I delete the archives with Windows Explorer and you do end up with grayed-out archives in the database that need cleaning up. The database does have the advantage of displaying the comments but I don't believe it is obvious where the archive is stored. I admit I'm from the old-school and I would prefer to deal with my archives at the file level, not in a database since I consider this program to be one that I want to use when everything has gone bad - such as Windows not running. I create the archive with my own filename which indicates the machine,partition and date plus anything else is strange. This could be put in comments but this makes it obvious when I'm in File Explorer.

    We all have our preferred ways of working and so, to each his own.
     
  19. JosephB

    JosephB Registered Member

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    seekforever,

    FYI, When you use the GUI - Schedule (Script) Tab and Edit your Script it just opens the the Script in NotePad and you can do anything to it.
    ... You can easily change the Archive - Filename in the Script, but you must remember File Paths are specified with the Slashes in the Opposite Direction of what is normal for a Windows File Path (aka Right/Forward Slashes instead of Left\Backslashes).
    ... You can easily find the "Comment" Field" to type in a different comment.


    ... Actually, its very obvious ... As you click on Archive line entry (in the GUI - Archive tab view) the Top Right Window section of the Top half of the Archive Tab View is a File Tree of your pc (a mini-like windows explorer) and you are poisitioned automatically on the Archive Folder and its .pbf file that correspond to the Archive Line Entry that you just "Clicked On".
     
  20. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    Thanks for the clarification.

    For my way of working, it would be nice if you could run a script and have it prompt for filename (including path) and then the comments and then proceed.

    I could write a program to do this but not right now.
     
  21. JosephB

    JosephB Registered Member

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    seekforever,

    You know, I actually do *not* run my Scheduled - Backup Scripts under the Paragon GUI - which really means that Windows - Task Scheduler would run them.
    ... I copied my Script out of Paragon's script folder and I am running it under another products "task scheduler".


    ... Basically, my other product is executing its own type of "script" where in my Weekly Job Script does the following:

    1. Runs an AntiVirus Scan and if AV Scan is clean, it then proceeds to run the Paragon Backup Script to perform a "Full Image (Weekly) Archive Backup of the System Partition".

    2. Next, it then runs a "Delete Old Archive's" from the external backup drive *and* I managed to figure out how to interface and have it also "Delete the Archives" from the "Archive (Catalog) Database" (no grayed out entries to manually delete !!!)

    P.S. My other product is actually more than a Scheduler, its actually a Windows Automation Software and I can "automate" any windows application or process that one might be doing manually under windows. Plus, now it has Web actions and can automate what you might be doing manully on web sites.

    P.P.S. It has a simple gui input dialog form with a text entry box and what you described doing - prompt for filename and comment entry (2 Dialog Windows - with 1 text entry box on each Dialog Window) and execute the paragon script could be done very quickly with it. If your interested, check it out - its called "Winautomation".
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
  22. Ellen

    Ellen Registered Member

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    I read other users say similar things at their website.

    That sounds really annoying. Were you able to override features like that?

    That makes a lot of sense. I bet companies would be resistant to that idea for P.R. reasons if nothing else.

    Thanks for recommending SyncBack & Karen's Replicator. I'll check them out.
     
  23. Ellen

    Ellen Registered Member

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    I think the 2nd possibility is much more likely since I checked out the text of the script & it looked the same as it does in the other scripts.

    Thanks for your answer about this.

    I'm using Hard Disk Manager 2011 suite. About contacting support, according to the webpage, for one time support the charge is $100 & for unlimited it's $200. So, I'll just keep doing the extra clicks to get rid of the error message.

    Where in the bottom half is "add script"? I don't see it, although that could be due to our using different versions.Thanks for your specific suggestions.
     
  24. Ellen

    Ellen Registered Member

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    What syntax did you add or where did you get it from? I'd like to add a verification check to my scripts too.
     
  25. JosephB

    JosephB Registered Member

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    Ellen,

    Probably a difference in Versions.


    In my backup script, following the completion of each backup, I execute a "Validation", just to feel warm and cozy.
    .... Look for my changes, enclosed within comments, in my "Attached" Backup Script.
     

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