need help with workaround for corrupt tib

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by ginahoy, Aug 13, 2008.

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  1. ginahoy

    ginahoy Registered Member

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    I've had several problems crop up on my system and I want to turn back my hard drive a couple of days. Although my last full backup is almost 2 months old, I have a dozen incrementals up to current. Unfortunately, TI reports the full backup tib is corrupt (perhaps some of the incrementals as well, but I didn't check them yet). I use an external USB drive for my backups and I'm still running TI9 build 3854. I haven't had this problem before, although I've only had once occasion to do a full image restore.

    I started reading through the long thread on the false corruption issue and decided to try copying the full backup tib file to an internal drive (not my primary). I used "xcopy /v" but TI still says it's corrupt.

    I have two questions:
    1) Since there's a good chance the backup may not really be corrupt, I considered trying to restore to an empty partition on my secondary drive. But if I do that, how do I make it my boot drive so that I may test the integrity of the image?
    2) Is there any reason why I can't just use the 'restore files' option to restore my entire drive instead of restoring the image? That way, if one or more files in the backup is truly bad, I can just unselect the affected file(s) from the restore. Is that even possible, running TI from Windows?

    Thanks,
    David
     
  2. shieber

    shieber Registered Member

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    If you have a Full that ATI cannot read properly or claims is not Valid, then that backup set is junk -- there are some exceptions.

    In some cases a perfectly good file will not validate on a DVD or a USB but will validate if copied to an internal hard disk. Sometimes USB works better if you unplug any other usb devices if you can.

    Sometimes botting form the bootCD will read a file that ATI can't read in Windows and vice versa, so try it both ways.

    Trying a full disk restore versus a single partiton restore won't make a diff, isn't liekly to make a diff -- if ATI can't read the file, it won't restore.
     
  3. ginahoy

    ginahoy Registered Member

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    Thanks for you response. I already had tried all of the things you mentioned, plus I've pulled out 2GB of memory and reduced timings. Also tried my shortest USB cord, cleaned contacts, etc.

    Here's the interesting thing... Today I checked all my tib files, both large and small, and was horrified to discover that every one of them is reported as being corrupt. Some are large (4GB), some are small (for special selective backups), some are on external USB drive and some are on my #2 internal HDD. This can't be! This is a fairly new system and it's the first time I've tried to do an image restore as well as the first time I've attempted to validate. As you can imagine, I'm freaking out!

    First I focused on the tibs on my internal drive since most of the corruption problems seem to be with external USB drives. I discovered that by unloading my virus software (AVG), I was able to validate ALL of my small tibs. I can't recall reading that this is recommended. However, the large tibs still wouldn't validate. So I removed half of my RAM. With that, I was able to validate all of my tibs on internal and external drive. That is, except for the most recent full backup. By now, I'm thinking this backup must really be corrupt. BTW, I swapped the memory sticks and got same results, just to rule out bad memory.

    Bottom line... there definitely seems to be something to what was stated in the long thread on corruption about having large amounts of memory creating transfer issues due to increased speed.

    Also, I forgot to mention. I have no problem mounting the corrupt backup, which leads me back to my questions....

    Actually, I didn't express my second question correctly. I should have said 'partition' , not 'entire drive'. The point of my question is to see if it's possible to use the 'restore specified files or folders' option to restore the active partition by simply selecting every file. Will this work?

    if I run into some individual files that won't restore, there's a good VERY good chance I won't need to restore them since the original file would not be overwritten. Alternatively, I could grab them from an older backup.

    Thoughts?

    David
     
  4. shieber

    shieber Registered Member

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    Your best best to grab the data files you can from the oldest backups you can from the latest backups you can, working your way back if you have to.

    The situation you describes makes me think what I have suspected for long, that the supposition that many problems with ATI performance are hardware (but ATI is the only program that makes the hardware problems show up) is not really the case -- it really might be a problem with ATI coding.

    In any event, once you get back the files you are looking for (hopefully), you still have the issue of what backup/imaging program works reliably on your hardware. I know the feeling. Good luck.
     
  5. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    You will get the files, but the partition won't boot correctly and you'll have a mess. Also, depending on how you do this, you can end up with some files that you can't delete normally. It's usually better to restore an older good image and then mount the newer one to get your more current files.

    Have you tried using the trial version of TI 11? Several posters have reported success using TI 11 to restore images declared invalid by older versions of TI.
     
  6. ginahoy

    ginahoy Registered Member

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    Thanks for your advice. That's sorta what I was afraid of. My previous full backup is nearly 2 months old, so it would be a lot of work to bring it up to date. The good news is I'm not dealing with a drive failure. It's just that a few weird things started happening Monday that I can't isolate and I wanted to do a quick roll back just to see if the issue is software related. Wow, this has been anything BUT quick!

    As for trying TI-11, I didn't realize I could install without losing 9. Is that possible? Also, I've just about had it with TI. If I thought this false corruption issue was resolved for good, I would upgrade to 11 in a minute. But according to the other thread, folks who upgraded to 11 are having the same problem.

    TI is apparently doing some creative things to get the speed we all appreciate. That's fine as far as it goes, but they REALLY should provide a way to verify compatibility for a particular system, and at least offer a "slow" option for when it might be needed. There's nothing worse than depending on a product to protect one's data and being let down.

    David
     
  7. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    You would have to uninstall TI 9, install TI 11 trial, create the TI 11 CD and then try the restore.

    If it were me and I didn't want to mess with my current installation, I'd just create the TI 11 ISO in a VM and then burn it (I'm assuming you could do that with the trial version -- I haven't tried it).

    Currently, Acronis is having problems with their website so you may not even be able to download the trial version or register it when you install it.

    If you still have a build 3,677 TI CD, you could boot it and see if it works better. You could also try the Safe Mode version. It may see you external drive. It depends on the computer.
     
  8. ginahoy

    ginahoy Registered Member

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    Oh, I just realized I can install on my wife's PC. Duh!

    I only have one boot media, created with version 3854. I haven't tried Safe Mode version, I will do that now. If it doesn't read my USB drive, I xcopied the backup onto my 2nd internal drive.

    BTW, I don't guess it would hurt to try restoring the image to an empty space on my drive, to see if it's really corrupt. If I recall, TI allows me to make it the active partition during the restore process. Is this risky? If it doesn't work, I need some way to get my machine to boot off of drive C:
     
  9. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    Safe Mode should see your internal drives okay and it would be faster than the USB drive.

    I would try to Validate the image first and see if TI says it's okay. If you want to restore to unallocated space, it should be okay. However, your partition table entries will get swapped which may cause confusion later.

    XP should boot okay. Vista would have problems if not prepared beforehand (a repair would be needed).

    If you need to switch back to the "old" C: partition, you'd need to set that partition Active using partitioning software. I think you can also do it using DISKPART when booted to the Windows Installation CD prompt.

    There is always risk involved when doing these types of operations. That's why getting it to work so you can trust it is important.
     
  10. ginahoy

    ginahoy Registered Member

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    thanks for your comments. I already did try to validate, as noted in my first two messages. At one point, TI reported all my tib's were corrupt! But after unloading my virus software and removing some memory, all of the tib's now validate ok except the most recent full backup, which makes all the subsequent incrementals pretty useless. However, based on what I read over in the long thread on this issue, I'd like to find out if the image is truly corrupt before giving up. The problem I'm trying to troubleshoot by doing the restore is probably not worth turning my drive back two months and trying to recover from that.

    As for trying restoring my OS image to a partition, that stuff makes me very nervous. After reading your comments, I'm thinking it would be a whole lot safer to swap my main drive with one I no longer need and format as the primary C: partition where I could test the "corrupt" backup.

    BTW, I still plan to create a TI 11 boot media and try that. Hopefully tomorrow.

    David
     
  11. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    Yes, but you also said you didn't try the Safe Mode version of TI. Have you since tried to Validate the images using the Safe Mode version?

    For the Full Mode version of TI, have you tried the quiet acpi=off noapic option detailed in Section II of the PLEASE READ BEFORE YOU POST thread?

    Is your USB hard drive formatted as FAT32 or NTFS?
    Have you isolated the most recent original Full image so you know that it is the file causing the problem? Otherwise, it's possible that only one of the latest Incremental images is bad. You could try renaming them (starting with the last one and working your way towards the Full image) and see if you can get a good Validation that's newer.

    For example, you have these files: myfull.tib, myfull1.tib (inc1), myfull2.tib (inc2), myfull3.tib, myfull4.tib, myfull5.tib, etc. Rename the last Incremental backup file to something else, say, myfull5_inc.tib and then try and Validate the set. If that doesn't work, rename myfull4.tib to myfull4_inc.tib and try to Validate again.
    This is the safest option. Your original is not at risk and you can run the tests.
     
  12. ginahoy

    ginahoy Registered Member

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    Thanks for reminder. Same results.
    Actually, I did try that when I ran Full Mode. (Yes, some of us actually read the "Read before you post" messages!)
    All drives, internal and external, are FAT32.
    Thanks for the suggestion. I assumed it was the Full because I had xcopied the full backup tib over to my internal drive and got a validation failure.

    Using your suggestion, I isolated the problem to the 3rd from the most recent incremental. Prior incrementals and the Full tib files validate even without using boot media. I'm confident now that by unloading virus software and removing part of my RAM, I can get accurate validation reports if I run into this problem again. Of course, removing RAM is a PIA. I'll be checking back in this forum in the future to see if Acronis ever does something to deal with this problem.

    After all was said and done, I was able to do a restore to a slightly older date, and with a minor clean up, get my drive back to current. Best of all, this enabled me to isolate the glitches I was chasing down.

    Finally, this episode has caused me to rethink my backup strategy. Since it only takes 7 or 8 minutes to do a full backup, I've decided to do more frequent full backups and switch from incremental to differential for interim backups. This approach probably won't cost much in terms of time, and if one differential is corrupt, it won't affect the others. Also, I'm going to start doing auto verify during backup.

    Thanks for the help,
    David
     
  13. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    That's good to hear.
    This is a good approach and one I use myself.
    I also think this is good. Some people don't like the extra time that the validation takes, but I like to know at the time of the backup if the image is okay. If there's a problem, I can fix it and reimage.
    You're welcome.
     
  14. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    For the RAM problem: When you boot to TI Full Mode from the CD, you could try to limit the amount of RAM it uses by using the mem= parameter (I think it should work with TI 9). See this thread.
     
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