Need Help to Understand

Discussion in 'FirstDefense-ISR Forum' started by WilliamP, Mar 28, 2009.

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  1. WilliamP

    WilliamP Registered Member

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    I am helping someone with a program. He sent me a test build,which I loaded. When I tried to re-boot the computer went into a loop. So thank GOD for FDISR ,I booted into my secondary snapshot. Now the confusing part. The secondary snapshot booted but it wanted to do a chkdsk and corrected a couple of things. How did the secondary snapshot get affected?
     
  2. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    They are just files on the disk. IF something does damage to the file system in can theoretically corrupt anything on the drive. Hence the reason for off disk archives and images.

    Pete
     
  3. WilliamP

    WilliamP Registered Member

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    Hi,Pete. I didn't think that could happen. I thought that the snapshots were independent from each other.
     
  4. chrome_sturmen

    chrome_sturmen Registered Member

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    William - it certainly can happen. The snapshots are independent of one another as regards usage, but all snapshots are in a hidden folder on your c: drive called "isr" so they are certainly all on the same file system. If the file system gets corrupted - everything on the disk is lost, hence like Pete said, you need off-disk images and snapshots. Fdisr is alot better than no protection of this sort, but it can still be thought of to be a bit delicate. I had a virus about a year and a half ago that latched in to all my snapshots - no matter which one I booted to, the virus was there..... so just keep in mind that it's not invulnerable. At the end of the day, though they are usage-independent, the snapshots are all sitting together on the same file system...
     
  5. WilliamP

    WilliamP Registered Member

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    Thanks for the info. I have 2 computers. My newer computer is connected to an external USB drive and I have an archive. Looks like I better do the same with this one.
     
  6. chrome_sturmen

    chrome_sturmen Registered Member

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    Yeah William that's a good idea to keep archives on a seperate disk - remember you can keep as many archives as you want-there's no limit on those, just snapshots have a limit. Whereas a file system error can bring down your disk and all your snapshots, archives that are safely tucked away on another disk are money in the bank, they can be counted on.

    What I did was like so: I installed windows fresh from the cd, then I created an archive called "clean install" it's not modified in any way, just a fresh install of windows. Second, after I made that archive, I built upon that clean install, installing windows updates and basic tweaks, things to do with a fresh operating system install etc, and once i'd reached a natural point of completion with that, I archived it and called it "base setup", which like I said is just the clean install plus windows updates and some tweaks. Then after I'd archived that, I continued to build on my install (this one is an ongoing work) and I update this archive as needed, calling it "workstation" which is the collective work of the first two archives, plus all my neccessary applications and other things that make an OS what it is.

    So now, if ever needed, I can restore from the archives at 3 different levels of progress according to my needs.In case of a hard drive crash, I will never need my windows install cd again, I would use my acronis true image disc to restore from a basic image, then quickly restore my FDISR archives to come current back to where I was. I have some other archives, but thery are mostly quirky variations on the themes i've aready mentioned, so I think i've conveyed my main thoughts on strategy.

    Thanks for the discussion :p
     
  7. WilliamP

    WilliamP Registered Member

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    I now have an archive image. I had an enclosure and a spare hard drive so now I am ready. I also have another internal drive with a Ghost image of my system as a worst case scenario backup.
     
  8. Acadia

    Acadia Registered Member

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    chrome sturmen, I like your method, you've got the cogs in my brain churning away! :cool:

    Acadia
     
  9. crofttk

    crofttk Registered Member

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    This works quite well for me. I play too much sometimes and it is a very quick process to restore what i call a "pristine" WinXP-SP3+FD-ISR only image (w/ IFW2 in my case) and then just suck in whatever archive I need to be back where I belong or want to be.
     
  10. Longboard

    Longboard Registered Member

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    You got it :)
    Ya similar to me too
    "clean install" snap and archive then incremental builds of OS and utilities with appropriate snaps and archives..
    Some specially config'd snaps,; archived and imaged
    Imaged each along the way..Terabyte 'natch..;)
    LOL: hopefully safe and didnt really take much effort after I nutted out the 'plan' in me head.
    Of course can boot in and out of whatever plus or minus freeze for fooling around.
    Possibly overkill ?? but tremendous peace of mind.
    Still have OS Install CDs if required, but can boot from BING for restores.

    DO not have super specific recovery plan for different HW as such:
    ..happy to take some suggestions..
    :thumb:
     
  11. chrome_sturmen

    chrome_sturmen Registered Member

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    All the trouble with windows, it's propreitary nature, that it costs money for everything, and is highly insecure makes learning linux more and more attractive to me all the time. I don't think i'd know what to do with myself if I weren't booting around managing snapshots and archives, updating/testing antimalware apps, and editing rules in defensewall, online armor and my firewall.... maybe i'd get back to..... brace yourselves..... using my computer *puppy* *puppy*
     
  12. Longboard

    Longboard Registered Member

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    A bit OT:
    :eek: Yeah there is that..:)
    Despite all that 'stuff' up there, realistically I now use MS ( XP ) for just a couple of work related things : databases and accounting...etc
    Will prolly have to go to an update MS OS sometime, but not for a while hopefully.
    Most of my personal time is in linux now
    VMs rock for trialling and then dual booting with file shares..finally got an older desktop from my local shop for next to nix , just for *nix.
    I pfaffed around to find the right distro and then spent lots of time fooling around.
    I dont need games as such and have very simple personal needs; easy to see where the value is for me in that regard.
    Try it: you'll like it ;)
     
  13. chrome_sturmen

    chrome_sturmen Registered Member

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    How's life in Sydney?? It seems always rated as one of the best places to live, so it can't be all that bad - i've been thinking actually about trying for a skilled visa there, i've been discussing it over on the expat boards: http://www.expatforum.com/expats/australia-expat-forum-expats-living-australia/

    Any rate, ive tried pc-bsd and d-bsd, yet couldnt get my wireless working with them at the time so they were out at that point. the buntus, and pclinuxos arent wel working for me as im getting an odd flickering on this laptop, more my system than the os im sure. Till i can get a better system it looks like im a windows exponent. I'd best keep on topic, watermark has accused me more than once of being a usurperous subversive :D :D
     
  14. WilliamP

    WilliamP Registered Member

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    About every three days I update my snapshots ,including my archive. In the advent that the same thing happens again,can I update my primary from the archive?
     
  15. chrome_sturmen

    chrome_sturmen Registered Member

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    William, sure you can, I did just that the other day, it's no problem updating a snapshot from an archive. Just remember that you can't restore the archive to the snapshot while you're booted in it, so just boot over to a spare snapshot, then from there restore your archive to your primary. You will find it no problem :thumb:
     
  16. crofttk

    crofttk Registered Member

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    Agreed with chrome's answer, HOWEVER, "same thing happens again" COULD imply corruption of that secondary snapshot as it is part of the same file system, SO, yes have another snapshot to boot into so you can refresh/replace your primary with the archive but one would do well to have an image backup of at least a clean OS (ideally with FD-ISR already installed) in case you have to start from scratch to access the archive contents.

    Just wanted to close up the conceptual loop back to your initial post.
     
  17. WilliamP

    WilliamP Registered Member

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    The reason I asked this question is I had heard that updating the archive causes the archive to be less duplicate of the primary. In other words it won't be the same bit for bit.
     
  18. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    Never checked bit for bit, but I've never had an issue restoring from an archive. Do it all the time. I would also archive your 2nd snapshot, just in case.
     
  19. WilliamP

    WilliamP Registered Member

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    Pete I had read that when updating an Archive some things didn't get removed and it seemed to me that this could be a problem. This may be wrong. I don't remember when I picked this information up.
     
  20. crofttk

    crofttk Registered Member

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    Perhaps the discussion was on the fact that unused disk space is not removed, i.e., if you updated an archive with a smaller snapshot, the stats on the archive can start to reflect unused parts of the archive.
     
  21. Acadia

    Acadia Registered Member

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    Right. From time to time it is best to delete an Archive, if it is updated often, and create it over again just to get rid of the empty space that does not get defragged. But even if you don't do this you should not have any problems whatsoever in updated the Primary Snapshot using the often updated Archive.

    Acadia
     
  22. TonyW

    TonyW Registered Member

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    I agree with that, but isn't it possible to update an archive from a snapshot that has a virus thereby making that archive contain the self same virus?
     
  23. crofttk

    crofttk Registered Member

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    That certainly falls under the heading of "safely tucked away" and of having "staged" snapshot archives so you can drop back to as basic a level as required, unless you just have gobs of storage space available and you can store one away every day for the last X number of days.

    That possibility is also part of why I keep my data on a partition separate from the OS & programs. I have my data partition redundantly and very frequently backed up, even sequential versions of documents I work on. OS & Programs, I back up much less frequently, because it doesn't take too much work to restore the last version and then bring that back up to date by downloading virus defs and Windows updates, or reinstalling the odd new program that I may not have caught on the last backup or snapshot archiving.
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2009
  24. chrome_sturmen

    chrome_sturmen Registered Member

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    Tone - that's why it's important to make sure your systems clean before you update your archive, I mean if a little spyware finds it's way into an archive it's not really gonna hurt anything, and if you had a bad enough virus, you'd have other things to worry about than updating your archives. Sometimes I do a quick malware scan before updating an archive, sometimes not - oftentimes I go on instinct. Concurring with what crofttk said, as well *puppy*
     
  25. WilliamP

    WilliamP Registered Member

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    I want to thank you all for the information. I couldn't remember what I had read ,but you all straightened it out for me. Once a month my Archive Drive is formatted. Then I just create a new archive.
     
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