External Backup drive full after only 1 week

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by Cindy62707, Jan 6, 2009.

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  1. Cindy62707

    Cindy62707 Registered Member

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    I am a new user to ATI Home 2009 Build 9646 on a Acer Vista Ultimate computer. I am very disappointed at the amount of continued user input needed to run the program.

    I have a 500GB computer and have a 500 GB external USB drive I am backing up to. I managed to do a full backup of my C drive, my D drive and my System state and have it set to do incremental backups on a nightly basis. After only 1 week the external hard drive is full and the program can't do any more backups. I have tried to go into the program and change settings to lower the amount of backups it will do before deleting older backups automatically (or at least I thought the program was supposed to do this) but it just keeps giving me the notification that backups were not completed because the disk is full.

    Isn't the program supposed to AUTOMATICALLY delete older backups to allow for newer backups? I could go in there and just start deleting backups but with only 2 full backups (or at least that is what I am guessing is there based only on the file size) I am leary of constantly having to manually delete files to create new space.

    So I have not been able to backup for the last week or two now because I can't find a way to get this program to take care of itself.

    I am also having other problems but when I get the time I will start a new thread with them.

    I created a System Information NFO file (as directed in one of the sticky posts) and tried to attach it but that file extension apparently is not one that the link below will allow.

    How do I get ATI do take care of itself and delete the older files it needs to allow room for a newer backup?

    Thank you,
    Cindy
     
  2. shieber

    shieber Registered Member

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    ATI checks for space limit rule violation after it creates the backup so if there isn't enough space to create the next backup, it won't get to the step where it checks for the rule violation and will just complain that the disk is full.

    IF there's enough space to make the next backup, then after makes the backup it will check for rule violation and if a rule is violated (say, number of backup files) then it will consolidate or delete oldest.

    If your limit is ten files, does you disk have room for 11?
     
  3. Cindy62707

    Cindy62707 Registered Member

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    Thanks Sheiber. So now how do I know which files to safely manually delete? From looking at the file sizes it looks like I have 2 full backups of each drive (C and D) but only 4 incremenatals of the first full backup of each but there was no room for the incrementals of the second full backups. On the System state I have one full backup and 6 incrementals before it ran out of room.

    It looks like it doesn't even have room to hold 2 full cycles of backups (a full with 4 incrementals on each drive and a full with 7 incrementals on the System State). Does one have to have a MONSTER external drive to do backups? I thought a 500 GB would be fine as there was some sort of compression on the backups.

    What else can I do?

    Thank you,
    Cindy
     
  4. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    How much free space do you have on the 500GB internal drive? Normally, a normal compression full backup will comprise about 60-75% of your used space. Then depending upon how much your system changes, the incremental should be approximately 10% of the size of the full backup (a wild guess).

    Hopefully, you are NOT performing a constant or frequent defrag because this will cause you incremental to be much much larger than normal. Also, a sector by sector type backup will cause your backup to be much larger than a normal full backup.

    If the backup always includes a lot of audio or photos, etc, a frequent backup of these is not necessary and most of us move this type file to an alternate location.

    Many of us have two or more external drives so we can alternate their use. In this manner, a loss of one external does not cause us to lose all our backups. Often times, we do not discover a need for a backup file, etc until long after the original backup. You do need to retain some longevity with your backup archives.
     
  5. Cindy62707

    Cindy62707 Registered Member

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    My computer is supposed to be a 500GB hard drive...C is partitianed to be 104 GB and 100 of that is used.

    D is partitianed to be 289 GB and 197 is used.

    That leaves about 100 GB unaccounted for theno_O I know 500 GB is a rough figure and the actual amount is supposed to be slightly less but 100 GB less?


    I thought I was manually defragging about twice a year but when I went to look to see when the last defrag was for this reply, I was quite surprised to see it was set to automatically defrag once a week! I went ahead and changed that to once a month while I was there. It would only have run once during the week and a half that Acronis was able to run.

    The D partitian of my internal hard drive is data that has alot of pictures but since there is not a lot of changes those incrementals should be very small.


    How often do you swap back and forth between the other external hard drives? One would have to remember or check daily to see if that nights backup would be a full or incremental so that you don't have a full backup on one external without it's related incrementals. Or do you just wait until you get the full message, then hook up another external and manually start fresh again?

    thank you,
    Cindy
     
  6. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    1 On my 500 gb sata drive, the formatted space available to the user is 465 GB.
    I would open Disk Management (Right click on My Computer and choose manage) and look at the graphical view of your 500 GB internal disk. Perhaps you have a hidden or diagnostic drive which is occupying some space. If you need to find where the space is being used, you could use the free "Tree Size" for this purpose.
    http://www.jam-software.com/freeware/index.shtml

    2. You should free up some space on your system drive. Windows is being crowded. Possibilities are
    a. Reducing amount of space permitted to Windows Restore points.
    b. Reducing your browser storage time.
    c. Cleaning up your temp files.
    d. Moving some personal files from C to D.

    3. For the sake of safety, it is best that the external drive not be connected 24/7 (although many do). If the external is attached when your computer is hit with a power surge, you loose the computer plus you could lose the external and have no backups--if that is your only storage. My scheduled backups are to other internal drives. My backups to my various externals are all manual backups and all are of the full disk type.

    a. Many of us use other additional methods to backup their personal data. I personally use Karen's Replicator to perform a simple copy of my personal files to my other internal or external drives. The files created by Replicator are simply plain copies of the files. There have been a variety of postings about personal backup methods. You may want to perform some research into these past posts.

    4. If you have not proven that your backup archive files can be restored, you are on very slippery slope. You need to have proven that your backup archives can be restored when the need arises. The time to prove that is now before the problem arises.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2009
  7. Cindy62707

    Cindy62707 Registered Member

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    I will have to find some time and work on the other items but I do have a question on #4...I am very nervous about trying a restore from my back up when my computer is not having any problems at the moment...what happens to my stuff on my internal hard drive if I try and do a restore and the restore is corrupt and wipes out what is GOOD on my internal hard drive? Or if something happens like I have been reading on another post ... that ATI Home 2009 is not backing up PST files and some other files like one would assume should be happening... if I do a restore, the missing or incomplete files would then write over my good files making them disappear.

    thank you,
    Cindy
     
  8. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    Yes, all these bad things can happen which is why the best way to test whether your backups will work is to install a new hard drive into your computer and use it for a test restore. Restore your backup to a new drive and see whether all your drives can be seen and whether the restore is successful.

    If this type test is not possible, then the next step is to restore a folder or files of which you have extra copies, etc. Many previous threads on this this testing.
     
  9. Cindy62707

    Cindy62707 Registered Member

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    I would hate to have to go out and buy a new internal drive just to test this. I really like the convenience of the exernal hard drive for backing up...if only the product worked as good as previous reviews so I could trust it. I had only heard good things about Acronis before I purchased but then once I tried using it and had problems did I see all the complaints people had. Apparenly PREVIOUS versions were very good. Is there a way to get Acronis to allow a new user to use an OLD version until they fix the new version?

    Thank you,
    Cindy
     
  10. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    You could use "Live Chat" located on your updates page to discuss it with support. I have owned and used 8,9,10,11 and now 2009. However, most of the previous issues all had their initial problems and it too a while to get them all sorted out. The newer versions are more apt to work on Vista.
    http://www.acronis.com/homecomputing/my/updates/

    One starting point would be to bootup using the TI Rescue CD and use the TI validate option to validate your external drive backups. Selecting any part of the backup will enable the entire backup to be activated validated.

    Another point would be to simulate performing a restore which means choose the specific archive fie and its destination, etc. It is practice or simulation all the way up to where you asked to "Proceed or Cancel". For practice, be sure and choose the Cancel Option to stop the practice.

    If you want to get the feel of what a restore involves, you might download and review this pdf file below. It may not match your hardware but at least it gives you an understanding so you can see what questions you might want to ask the forum members.

    Remember, when practicing, do NOT click on the PROCEED button.

    http://grover.tabinc.com/gh-temp/2009-4946.pdf
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2009
  11. The Gold Tooth

    The Gold Tooth Registered Member

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  12. Cindy62707

    Cindy62707 Registered Member

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    Thanks...I followed your link and also looked at the earlier message link in that post...
    I know that batch files "run" a process but I have NO idea how to put them into my computer to do the running.

    Cindy
     
  13. Tatou

    Tatou Registered Member

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    Cindy

    Just to follow up on GroverH stuff.

    Its a matter of getting a backup strategy that meets your needs and the degree of risk you are prepared to accept. You are miles ahead of a lot of people who use computers as you are using a backup programme already.

    The strategy I use is based on two needs

    1 The need to make sure my system partition can be restored if something goes wrong as I don't wish to reinstall Windows and all my programmes. I use True Image to do this.

    2 The need to have backups of my critical data files I have on my system. This includes 16,000 plus JPG/Tiff/RAW files, many videos files, MPG files and many Word/Excel files and gigs of Music and computer programmes I have downloaded and paid for (I have a folder where I store the original files of programmes that are installed but I don't not have CDs for)
    I use Karen's Replicator to do this.

    As far as 1 is concerned I have decided that I can live with a weekly full backup of my system drive- I always keep two sequential copies on different external drives so I always have two full versions of the system drive. I only have one partition on the 300 gig system drive. I set a manual backup of the system drive late Sunday night - go to bed and it is finished Monday morning :) . I will always do a manual backup out of this sequence if I am installing a programme that I think may be problematic such as installing a new Virus Checker. I do not use the TI Boot CD to backup and restore from as I find it slow- although it works. I use a VistaPE drive on a flash drive. However the TI CD is OK just make sure it works.

    As far as 2 is concerned I decided that I just want to make sure there is a copy of my files somewhere else than the drives attached to the computer. I backup the files to external USB drives that I plug in and unplug as needed. The files are organised in different folders . Some folders have only been backed up once as no new files are put in that folder-One folder has 10,000 JPGs from scanning in photographic negatives, other folders are "working folders" and are backed up daily to an external drive.

    Karen's Replicator lets you make up tasks that can be scheduled or run manually. It is a great programme and of course as files are stored in the standard format there is no worry about restoring them if needed (you don't need Karen's to do that just copy over using Windows). I have task set such as "Photographs One" which copied a folder with 6,000 files that do not change. This was run once to a external drive. I have a task called "My Registered Programmes". This copies a folder from the main drive to a Backup drive. I have a task called "My Docs" which daily copies the C:\users\Keith\Documents folder contents from the system drive to one of the external USB drives so I always have two copies of that "working folder"

    I may be a bit extreme as I have 4 external USB drives attached to my computer and a eSata drive and 4 external USB drives for Backups but the backup strategy works no mater what the number is. Three of the drives are away from home during the week so if my computer gets stolen, there is a fire etc I will still have access to my critical data files especially the photographs.

    I found it helped to think about backing up in this way rather than just deciding to backup up my computer.


    I see you backup the system daily. Unless you are making many changes to your system on a daily basis you may not need to do this. I have found that TI seem to work well if you make a simple manual backup of the system drive as described above.
    You can then backup up critical data folders with something else such as Karen's Replicator as often as you wish.


    Finally as GroverH says the key is to be sure that if the system crashes you can boot from either the TI CD or a flash drive, access your Tib file and restore it to the internal drive. If you are unable to try it out to a spare drive you install then use his suggestion about booting from the CD and proceeding until the "proceed" prompt.

    Once you get your strategy in place its then a matter of just doing it.

    Sorry for rambling on
     
  14. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    Tatou,
    A very nice informational posting. All of Karen's programs work really well and useful.
     
  15. Tatou

    Tatou Registered Member

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    Thanks for the nice comment

    I agree that Karen's programmes are great.
     
  16. Cindy62707

    Cindy62707 Registered Member

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    Hi Everyone,

    After spending many late nights on these problems I took a break from the computer for several days. But I did follow through on a couple of items. I cleaned up my C drive and created more free space. Turned out there were many duplicate files on there from pictures and old PST files from my previous computer. I thought I had moved them off my C drive to my D drive long ago but I must have copied them to my D drive, not moved them to the D drive.

    Second, I put in the boot CD that I created and rebooted my computer but I am not sure that it booted from the CD versus just normal booting. The computer started up just like normal. I expected some sort of message telling me that I just booted from a disk...instead I just got my normal login screen. How can I know if it booted from the CD?

    Third, I still need to figure out how to back up without running out of space so quick...and I just need to get around to deleting all the files on my external drive (or reformatting it) and just starting all over since it has now been over a month since I've been able to back up...just wanted you guys to know I am still working on things.

    If someone can assist me with the boot from CD action though I would appreciate it.

    Thanks,
    Cindy
     
  17. bodgy

    bodgy Registered Member

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    If you got your normal Windows login, then the Rescue CD didn't work.

    Check in your BIOS that the machine boot order is CDROM -> internal drive and try again.

    You can't miss it as the screen will go black and you'll see an Acronis Loading.... message at the top left of the screen.

    Could you write down how you entered the task? By the sounds of it, you are either making a series of FULL backups or a series of Incrementals that think there is a full somewhere along the line and just keep incrementing the file details. You may need to enable consolidation at some point, but leave this for now, as it doesn't seem all that robust.

    Colin
     
  18. Cindy62707

    Cindy62707 Registered Member

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    I have no idea how to "check my bios". I am thinking I can't do that with the computer up and running but have to do something while it is booting. Is that correct? And if so, how do I do that? Is it "dangerous" to get into it if you don't really know anything about it (not that I am hesitant to learn but just need to know what to be careful with). And once I get into it, if I change the "boot order" will this affect the computer in good times when I just want it to boot without any issues?

    As far as "entering the task"...do you mean the backups? The only way I can do a backup is to schedule it in "Tasks and Logs" section. If I try and do it in Backup and Restore tab, My Data, I get all the problems listed in one of my other posts.

    Thanks,
    Cindy
     
  19. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

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    Hello Cindy,

    Thank you for using Acronis True Image

    You can learn more about BIOS settings here

    I may recommend you to use our Live Chat service here, we will help you to set the task properly.

    Thank you.

    --

    Oleg Lee
     
  20. The Gold Tooth

    The Gold Tooth Registered Member

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    Cindy62707,

    Batch files are lists of instructions contained in a file you can run from the command line in the same way you would run a program (i.e., type the name of the batch file at the command prompt), or you can run them with the Task Scheduler.

    Here's a good introduction to batch files: http://www.computerhope.com/batch.htm.

    Good luck.

    TGT
     
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