Macrium Reflect

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by Stigg, Nov 23, 2013.

  1. Arvy

    Arvy Registered Member

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    Which would lead one to think perhaps of inconsistencies occurring in Reflect's backup image results rather than a problem with the target drive arising persistently under both the Windows working and WinPE rescue environments. As you say, that leftover 503 MB unallocated free space in the posted backup image is strange. (Is it there for all the images?) Even for a Windows upgrade (aka "feature update") installation, if it needs to create a new recovery partition it usually just leaves the old one behind intact but unused.

    __
    P.S.: As for Krusty's suspicion that Linux might have something to do with it, Reflect would show any ext partition as below:
    ext4partition.png
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2017
  2. Krusty

    Krusty Registered Member

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    Yes, it verifies OK.
    Yes, tried this and am able to navigate the backup.
     
  3. Arvy

    Arvy Registered Member

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    In the circumstances, Krusty, I think my best considered advice would be just to forget about those older backup images except perhaps to mount one of them if you need to recover any user data files (docs, images, etc.) that would otherwise be lost. My understanding, based on what @Brian K passed along from you, is that you are now able successfully both to create and restore new backup images of the entire drive with the fresh Windows 10 v1709 installation. If so, that would seem to indicate that any pre-existing problem has been eliminated, whatever it may have been.

    Regretfully, I have to admit that I just can't offer any rational explanation for what might have gone wrong with those older images that would let them be verified and mounted successfully but would prevent their restoration to the same drive from which they originated. If I come up with one later, I'll certainly pass it along, but I see little to be gained through further speculation and some potential risk in any further effort to restore them along with whatever problems they may include. That 503 MB unallocated free space does seem suspicious as Brian has suggested.
     
  4. WinterKnight

    WinterKnight Registered Member

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    Is it OK to create two or more images (full or differential) in the same Windows 10 session (i.e., without rebooting)? I use the free edition of Macrium Reflect 7.1. I know the paid edition has something called CBT that facilitates this. I just wanted to make sure that there were no problems doing it with free edition, even if it takes a bit longer.
     
  5. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    All CBT does is facilitate taking Incrementals or Differentials a bit faster in the same session and possibly a tad smaller. It's not needed to take those images at all. Without CBT, images are taken just like they've always been.

    There's no limitations in the FREE version (except for no Incrementals)... take as many images as you like.
     
  6. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    For those that image EXT4 partitions using REFLECT while running in Windows...

    I'm noticing a serious anomaly when I image EXT4 partitions while in Windows using REFLECT. Although Linux tells me that my 100gB EXT4 partiiton has about 39.9gB in use, Reflect is telling me that 60gB is in use. My secondary imager (IFW) tells me that there's 39.9gB in use in the same partition. This after creating some VMs on the Linux side of the System and increasing the size of my separate /home partition.

    Also, all of a sudden, when imaging that same EXT4 partition with Reflect to another partition on the same physical disk, the bandwidth has dropped from appx. 104mB/s to 2-5mB/sec. The same imaging operation in IFW only drops slightly in bandwidth (due primarily to disk head positioning).

    Has anyone seen anything like this before (still using the tried and true final version of Reflect v6)?
     
  7. oliverjia

    oliverjia Registered Member

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    https://www.wilderssecurity.com/threads/macrium-reflect.356309/page-77#post-2476439

    I have been saying the same thing for more than 2 years, and apparently MR still has not improved their actual support for EXT4 since then. Although MR still claims they "support" EXT4 I don't trust these people. I guess that "support" wording was created by the same marketing team who successfully ruined MR v7.
    The best Linux disk imaging tool is IFW/IFL, followed by Drive Snapshot and Clonezilla. Paragon can also get the job done.
     
  8. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    Thanks @oliverjia for the re-visit of an issue I didn't even know existed :eek: (I wasn't messing with EXT<x> at that time at all).

    Looks like IFW/IFL will be my primary imaging tool(s) as far as my engaging Linux at this time.
     
  9. WinterKnight

    WinterKnight Registered Member

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    Thanks for responding! I assumed it would work. Just wanted to make sure.
     
  10. Arvy

    Arvy Registered Member

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    I see some differences between the partition sizes and the used/free space that Linux Mint 18.3 reports and that Macrium Reflect 7.1.2722 reports for all drive partitions, but nothing like a 20 GB discrepancy. For my Linux ext4 partition (which resides on the same SSD drive as an NTFS partition) screenshots of the two reports are included below.


    LinuxPartition.png ReflectPartition.png
     
  11. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    Everything was reasonable up to the point where I doubled the size (to accommodate more VMs while "playing") of my separate /home partition (using Gparted). When finished, Linux MINT was the same as expected in partition sizes and used (allocated) space but Reflect went nuts and added all this additional "used" storage space to its expected image size... I have no idea why. The partition expansion via Gparted is a fully supported operation when it comes to EXT4 volumes and the result was as expected, as far as Linux was concerned... the used space didn't change, only the partition size. Possibly REFLECT's interpretation of the EXT4 space allocation table is flawed in some way.

    As far as the very slow imaging speed change... I haven't a clue.
     
  12. Arvy

    Arvy Registered Member

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    Sounds to me like a reasonable guess. As Reflect does use its so-called "intelligent copy" feature when imaging ext partitions, any such impacts on its "interpretation" of the allocation table could also affect its operational efficiency in general ... quite drastically one would suppose. Have you had any direct contact with Macrium's "official" support team about it?
     
  13. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    Not yet... I will give it a shot to see what they have to say. In the meantime I'm using "Image For Windows" to image the MINT System... which is imaging flawlessly at the moment.
     
  14. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    First their Forums (posted) then their Support Portal.
     
  15. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    I tried a couple of other tools to look at used space (Gparted LIVE & Minitool Partition Wizard) besides Image For Windows and all agree with the Linux System except REFLECT... in my best Yoda voice, "Scared I am!"
     
  16. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Seems OK here.

    Free space in Ext4 partition...
    Macrium 7 ..5.52 GB
    Macrium 6 ..5.52 GB
    IFW ..........5.53 GB
     
  17. Arvy

    Arvy Registered Member

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    I'd be nervous about it too in the circumstances. It's definitely solid grounds for a direct inquiry as their KB claim of ext4 support with "intelligent copy" is quite explicit. I'd be on their backs myself, but not having made any adjustments with Gparted (nor any others except for the Mint installation process), I've seen no similar discrepancies or performance hits. Since your initial post, I have run a couple of test backup/restore ops (under Windows 10 and WinPE 7) and all seems well. I think I'll probably await your report on the response from Macrium "officialdom" before trying any Gparted manipulation, but let me know if they ask you for confirmation of your own findings.

    __
    P.S.: In case you might wonder about my willingness to experiment, I have several "backups of backups" including bootable (WinPE and Linux) Acronis TrueImage 2018 that also seems to handle ext4 with no issues other than not mounting the partition images. Again, its size and space numbers are somewhat different. Here's the ATI report on that same ext partition:
    atibackup.png
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2017 at 12:05 AM
  18. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    Did a little more testing...

    As @Arvy found above, I also ran ATI 2018 and it completely agreed with all the other tools (and Linux MINT) as far as SIZE is concerned... 39.11gB of used space on the expanded 100gB EXT4 partition in question. REFLECT says 63.18gB are in use.

    I decided to run the same processes under the REFLECT Recovery Media. The size, as expected, remained in error (it is the same app after all) but the speed characteristics changed drastically. Now I expect some speed differences between LIVE Windows and WinPE (disk buffering/queuing/caching would be the main ones with WInPE expected to be a bit slower <what I've seen in the past anyway>) but what I'm seeing is very strange (see below)...

    Imaging speeds with this expanded EXT4 partition

    --------------------------------------------------------
    Windows (LIVE):
    Source (disk2 ) to Target (disk2) = 2.5-5mB/sec
    Source (disk2 ) to Target (disk3) = 10mB/sec

    WinPE:

    Source (disk2 ) to Target (disk2) = 20mB/sec
    Source (disk2 ) to Target (disk3) = 45-50mB/sec


    Prior to the EXT4 partition expansion, speeds were appx. 100-110mB/sec under LIVE Windows when imaging that partition (same disk for SOURCE and TARGET)..

    I don't know whether any of this DATA brings anything to mind... feel free to brainstorm.

    PS: Only Macrium Forum suggestion to date since my post there (from user who lives on the Forum) was to load up my image under viBoot (can't do that since I'm running Win7 & Reflect v6) and verify it. I haven't made a successful image yet due to the very slow imaging speed (2.5mB/sec)... it would take about 4.5-hours under LIVE Windows to do this. What "verification" would mean in relation to these issues, I have no idea. If I really needed this image I would do it under WinPE based on the above (probably 20-some minutes).
     
  19. Arvy

    Arvy Registered Member

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    Strange hardly covers it. As you say, one would expect WinPE performance differences, if any, to be a bit slower. Since it's looking at the same allocation table and since its executable is identical using the same "intelligent copy" algorithm, your follow-up results would tend to rule those factors out as an underlying explanation.


    As you know, I consider posting under their current forums setup little more than an invitation to single-source "gatekeeping" and distractions from the core issues involved. In this case, the respondent doesn't even have a Linux setup of his own upon which to base an answer and misses your key points in any case. Hopefully your direct support contact will get you a more responsive response.

    I'll refrain from any wild speculation of my own pending that more direct Macrium support contact. However, I do have one question about your Gparted operation. Was your system booted to the Linux Mint installation media when you ran it? They call that "Live", BTW, which differs from your own usage of that terminology.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2017 at 11:05 AM
  20. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    Although the partition I expanded was not the Linux partition itself while running under Linux (I don't think you could do that), I most likely could have used the installed Gparted application to expand the DATA partition (it was not mounted)... I did not. I used the Gparted LIVE CD to do that particular partition operation... all went just fine with both Gparted and the Linux BOOT seeing the results as the same (same used space as before the expansion and double the partition size).
     
  21. Arvy

    Arvy Registered Member

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    Got it. I understand that the change only involved resizing of your separate data partition. (Good organization BTW.) It was strictly a "shot in the dark" question grasping at straws in such strange circumstances.

    __
    Aha! I see that Mr Sills has now entered into their forum thread to inquire whether you've tried using Ext2Fsd to mount the backup image. I suspect that they may keep a watchful eye on this forum occasionally. ;)
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2017 at 12:06 PM
  22. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    I wish I could take credit for such organization :rolleyes: but alas, I cannot. Panagiotis (@pandlouk ) made that suggestion in another thread, and as I was going crazy building virtual Systems, I figured it would be best to take his very astute suggestion (thanks again, Panagiotis!).
     
  23. Arvy

    Arvy Registered Member

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    Well, having contemplated a total strategic changeover for a while now, it may be time for me to make that switch as well. Just bought the complete TeraByte "bundle" and am now plowing my way through all the user guides. At first glance, just becoming familiar with the new (to me) beast appears to be quite a major undertaking. :doubt:
     
  24. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Arvy,

    Regard those guides as Reference books rather than Text books. You don't need to read most of the pages on Parameters unless you have specialized needs.
     
  25. Arvy

    Arvy Registered Member

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    I understand, Brian, and thank you. But I must know all about it before hitting the "start button", and I just can't help myself. Took me several days just to learn how to use all my new Galaxy S8's gadgets before I could make a phone call. :argh: I'll get there eventually and I'll probably have a million questions when I do. Just now registered on the TeraByte forums.
     
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