Problems with Storeagecraft

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by marse.robert, Feb 10, 2013.

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  1. marse.robert

    marse.robert Registered Member

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    Hi

    I purchased SPD from their USA site.

    From the get go, I could not restore, and contacted support. I was provided with one solution which did not work. I informed their support and no further solution arrived. I then asked for a refund.

    Support transferred my complaint to the UK with the message "someone" will contact you. I was not contacted.

    I telephoned the UK support and asked for a refund to be told "we don't give refunds. I asked for his name and he fired off his email address which I could not recognise, and after several attempts he said that he would email me: he did not.

    I contacted Trading Standards who confirmed they had received several complaints about the Company. TS have told me to write to the Company via recorded delivery.

    I did not purchase by credit card: I purchased through my debit card.

    Any advice?
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2013
  2. Feandur

    Feandur Registered Member

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    Asia / Pacific region...
    http://www.storagecraft.com.au/

    My local [Brisbane, Australia] retailer is BMC Computers at support@bmc.net.au

    Stewart Brooks is / was the QLD State Manager at stuart.brooks@storagecraft.com.au

    phone, +61 402 517 508 [Australia]


    I'm suggesting contacting Stuart or BMC computers to see if support can be given to you, and / or a referral to a reliable contact in your region.

    May I also say I have never installed SP, even though I have been using it for years. I only ever use the recovery media to do 'cold' backups and restores....Just make sure your boot order in the BIOS is set to check the optical drive first.

    Download the recovery media ISO, burn to DVD, put into optical tray and reboot. When the GUI opens use the wizard to backup or restore.

    -cheers,
    feandur


    .
     
  3. Feandur

    Feandur Registered Member

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    PS: I believe the ph # in Australia for StorageCraft - APAC is +61 2 8061 4444

    -cheers,
    feandur
     
  4. marse.robert

    marse.robert Registered Member

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    Hi Feandur

    After SPD stopped communicating with me, I tried to restore using the method you describe.

    On completion of restore the software says "restore completed successfully - reboot," On reboot I get the message "Computer shutdown unexpectedly.

    Widows 8 then cannot boot into Windows and goes into recovery mode. After about 30 minutes I get the message "Windows cannot be repaired."

    I then have to uninstall and then reinstall. I did this 3 times and now SPD tells me to buy another licence.

    Trading Standards observed this and advised me to phone SPD's support and record their response.

    I know there are a lot of people with Wilders who truly like SPD and I do not want to rock the boat. But something is radically wrong with their support procedure.

    Regards

    Marse

    PS: I purchased Macrium which works like a dream
     
  5. jwcca

    jwcca Registered Member

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    What version are you using? I purchased SP Desktop when it was V 4.1.5 and found that when I initially tried to do a backup from the ISO (prior to installing it) it refused because I hadn't installed it yet. Earlier versions may not have had this restriction.
     
  6. jwcca

    jwcca Registered Member

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    StorageCraft seems to be totally paranoid about folks 'stealing' their software, they ask us to de-register the licence before switching hardware or attempting re-installs. Simply uninstalling and then re-installing just won't 'do the trick' as they say. I'd tried that when I was switching from XP to W7. I uninstalled from XP and installed on W7. They keep track of both software and hardware and if it doesn't 'match', SP won't work. I contacted their tech support and was told that I was supposed to deactivate through the UI when I uninstalled on XP or send them an e-mail request to deactivate the licence. This wasn't clearly documented. When talking to their tech support to get this sorted out, I was told that they were going to make this requirement 'more visible' in a future release, such as a pop up when uninstalling to allow deactivation as part of the process. Did you see this?

    Regardless, definitely not a 'user friendly' way to do business.

    J
     
  7. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    They have a reason for the paranoia. Shadow User was so badly pirated, the they provide support for more pirated copies then valid copies. Probably why development stopped. Once burned.....
     
  8. Feandur

    Feandur Registered Member

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    JW Clements - Back up of an XP system is happening right now using SP v 4.1.5.

    -No unexpected behaviour.

    I've taken images of my son's Win 7 x64 bit using either v4.1.5 or v4.0.5 [can't remember which] and restored successfully without any issues.

    I've just got v 5.0.0 and will try than once the imaging is finished on v4.1.5 and let you know.


    In the past I've always used a DVD of either v3.3 or v3.5 for my systems [which are XP] and have not had any trouble - except some times there is very slow initializing of the GUI. Usually this points to RAM or the Optical drive starting to fail. Replacing the optical drive a few times and I'm back in business with snappy imaging.

    -cheers,
    feandur

    PS: I can't explain the issues you are having, other then I don't personally download the ISO and burn it to DVD. I purchase the recovery media, for a nominal amount, under my 3 year maintenance licence , from SP's retailer / reseller here in Brisbane. Perhaps they enter my licence number to SP's web site when they download the ISO.

    It's a service your own reseller could do for you.
     
  9. Feandur

    Feandur Registered Member

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    I used v5.0.0 -would not boot an XP box into SP's GUI. - it went straight to the dual boot screen [I'm booting Mint & XP]. Downloaded ISO for v5.0.1 - would not boot into GUI - same result. Therefore confirmed ! Version 5 as recovery media does not appear to work !

    However both v4.1.5 and v4.0.5 work well without problems.

    I'll follow this up.


    PS: When I log in to download the ISO's only v3 [3.5.2] and v5 [5.0.1] are offered as ISOs - [you will need your licence] http://www.storagecraft.com/release/sprelease.asp

    but v4.2.7 is offered as an .exe here... http://www.storagecraft.com/software_update.php


    Wonder why they deleted v4 as an ISO.

    -cheers,
    feandur
     
  10. Feandur

    Feandur Registered Member

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    Update:
    Version 3.5.2 appears to work OK on Windows 7 x 64 bit as a recovery media. I can boot into the GUI and carry out normal functions.

    Version 5 doesn't work at all as recovery media on Win 7 or XP.

    Version 4 appears to be the Win 7 version, with a substantial bug fix between v4.1.5 and 4.2.5. Change log.........
    http://www.storagecraft.com/support/book/english-readme/storagecraft-shadowprotect

    Ideally, on Win 7, try to get the ISO for v4.
    On Win 8...have no idea at this stage.

    -cheers,
    feandur
     
  11. jwcca

    jwcca Registered Member

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    I've used v 4.1.5 ISO to restore successfully, once, when I had a Corsair Force 2 SSD fail. I also have the 4.2.5 ISO but haven't had to use it.

    My 2 current issues are:
    1) neither 4.2.5 nor 5.0.1 would write an image to my Passport drive when it was connected to a USB3 port, they both write images to the drive when it's connected to a USB2 port and of course to an internal SSD and hot swap HDDs. So I have images created with 4.2.5 and 5.0.1 and if there's nothing radically different, I could restore using the v 4.x.x recovery media.
    2) SP fails when there's a RAM disk present but doesn't explain why it fails. It should detect the RAM disk as a RAM disk and ignore it and carry on to present the back up window contents.
    Neither issue is critical, at least not for me, a less astute user might have a problem determining the solutions but then not many folks use RAM disks and probably don't use (Passport) USB3 drives for images. But the issues should be resolved by StorageCraft.

    I appreciate your work to discover that the 5.x.x recovery media doesn't work. I don't expect that I'll ever need it, the current Corsair Force 3 SSD should last a long time and being non-mechanical, it can't break like an HDD can. I can see this as a critical issue, especially if a user doesn't have 4.x.x recovery media (and especially if they had it and discarded it upon getting 5.x.x media).

    The other issue with having to deactivate a licence before uninstalling and re-installing on a different system was merely a PITA when I didn't know the 'rule'. I don't plan on changing systems for quite a while. SC does have very good documentation in their Release Notes about this now. I haven't checked to see if they made the change to the Uninstall to warn a user to deactivate....etc., just to avoid Support requests.

    J
     
  12. marse.robert

    marse.robert Registered Member

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    JW Clements & Feandur

    Thanks for your input.

    Trading Standards has accumulated a number of issues with SPD's recovery media which is associated with version 5.

    Despite this, the USA and UK Support do not mention such issues. The USA support was clearly informed that I could backup but not restore, and they did/said nothing.

    I truly did not want to involve TS: left with no other choice.

    Marse
     
  13. HAN

    HAN Registered Member

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    It's a shame this is happening. ShadowProtect has been such an awesome product. I made gobs of cold images with it and it was always blazing fast and reliable.

    That said, I migrated elsewhere. For me, it was the price. Unless one has access to some kind of discount, it's just too expensive.
     
  14. stevesnyder

    stevesnyder Registered Member

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    Hello Marse,

    I was reading your comments and wasn't clear why you couldn't restore or what troubleshooting you did with StorageCraft's support team. I see a lot of comments about going through the process of getting a refund but I don't see much about the actual problem. The only advice I can offer for getting your money back is to go through proper channels. Even a debit card purchase is backed by the guarantor bank (VISA, MC, whatever... ask your bank) so I wouldn't be too worried about getting your money back.

    On the other hand, I would really like to help solve your technical problem if possible. You mentioned at one point that you got into Windows 8's recovery mode. This should indicate you've loaded the recovered OS at that point. Are you using ShadowProtect 5 (released last December) because an earlier version wouldn't be compatible with your Windows 8 operating system. Are you using a UEFI/GPT large block disk? If so, the minor revision (ShadowProtect 5.0.1) resolves some problems with larger disk volumes. I personally haven't heard of any issues with the ShadowProtect 5.0 recovery environment but I'm willing to take a stab at it if you can provide more information?

    Hello Han,

    You are right, ShadowProtect is an awesome product. It's also priced smack dab in the middle of the price curve compared with competitors. There are cheaper products and there are more expensive products. The cheaper products don't typically have the feature set that StorageCraft ShadowProtect has. And the products that do have all the features ShadowProtect offers are usually much more expensive.

    I hope the price comes down too so that some day everyone will be able use this amazing tool to backup their OS, applications and critical data. Until then, it's worth the money to me to know that I'm covered.

    Yes, Peter2150, unfortunately there are a lot of dishonest people out there. And when you have a product that works there will always be an incentive for people to try to illegaly copy the software. I wish there were an easy way for everyone to use a good product at a reasonable price that compensates the developer for his time and sweat. Until then I guess we'll just have to rely on quality products and honest salespeople (oxymoron?).

    Cheers!
     
  15. Feandur

    Feandur Registered Member

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    JW Clements:
    I have logged a job with Storage Craft Asia/Pacific regarding bios not recognizing / being able to boot from Version 5.0.0 and 5.0.1 on my machines here at home.

    My guess is that it's to do with version 5 supporting modern [Windows 8, x64bit, large partitions] computers that use / support UEFI [unified Extensible Firmware Interface], whereas my old machines simple have the legacy BIOS [basic Input / Output System].

    Hence, my theory is that a very recent computer [say, after October 2012] running Windows 8 x64bit will boot happily, but one with a more dated motherboard will not. Just a theory.

    Alternatively it may just be my computers.

    Either way, as version v4.1.5 works well as recovery medium, I'll stay with it for my XP and Win 7 boxes and laptops.

    Hope it all works out well for you.

    - cheers,
    feandur

    PS: My interest in v5 is that I am getting a new small ultrabook to write my world famous novel at local coffee shops :D ....so I was hoping to continue with SP into Win 8. It may be, if my theory is right, that v5 should work well with it. I'll wait and see.
     
  16. marse.robert

    marse.robert Registered Member

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    Hi stevesnyder

    Thanks for your interest.

    I purchased the latest version of SPD (about 5 weeks ago). The recovery media was taken from the Application.

    In the first instance, the operating system was Windows 7 Home and at that time, I was planning to upgrade to Windows 8. I initially installed SPD into Windows 7. The first backup was successful according to SPD’s software. On restore, I was confronted with an array of choices which I left at default.

    When I restarted Windows I immediately received a BSOD – the message appeared and disappeared in a thrice.

    On this occasion, I had to reinstall the operating system which was Windows 8: I had to reinstall SPD.

    I backed up C:\ with SPD and created another media CD from the Application. The backup went smoothly and according to the software it was successful. On recovery, I was again confronted with an array of choices which I left at default.

    On completion of recovery I rebooted and received the message “Computer shutdown unexpectedly.” I then selected to start Windows normally and the computer stuck at “Windows is starting.” This message remained for some time and this was followed by Windows 8 Recovery mode which could not repair the computer. This entailed another reinstall of Windows and SPD.

    1st message to SPD explaining my problem to SPD which prompted a solution from SPD support which I followed. SPD’s solution did not work: SPD’s solution left me reinstalling Windows 8 and SPD.

    I thought to myself, “I must have misunderstood SPD’s message, so I tried again – and the same catastrophe occurred. I then searched the Web for other issues which concerned SPD to find that the media CD had been causing issues, and this same problem has been reinforced by Feandur and JW Clements who contribute at Wilders Security Forum.

    I finally cleared everything off of my computer, and purchased Macrium which is working perfectly,
    Regards
    Marse
     
  17. marse.robert

    marse.robert Registered Member

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    Hi stevesynder

    You say "This should indicate you've loaded the recovered OS at that point." With the utmost respect, this statement is not correct.

    Windows 8 could not boot! If Windows 8 cannot boot the Recovery Module steps in to correct the boot issues. If this is unsuccessful, there is an option to Refresh or Renew the Windows installation. On this occasion, I could not access these options.

    I am not computer savvy! But, I used "Diskpart" to view the state of the visible drives, and two of the visible drives were bootable. I will leave that to people who are computer savvy. I rely on the people at Wilders Security Forum.

    I truly wanted to have SPD on my system: if people such as Peter 2150, Feandur and JW Clements think so highly about SPD that is recommendation indeed.

    PS: I have just heard from the USA site of SPD: Support have informed me, "someone will contact you" and this was the identical message I received 5 weeks ago, and nobody contacted me, and I was duly transferred to the UK.


    Marse
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2013
  18. jwcca

    jwcca Registered Member

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    And they did resolve everything, to my shame.
    An extremely pleasant and understanding support tech (initials JS) reviewed my SP diagnostics logs and suggested that I check the Gigabyte site for updates that might solve the problem.
    I did, and found a BIOS update covering USB3 plus an updated Etron USB3 chipset driver. Once those were installed, SP backed up through USB3 as fast as it does to an internal SSD and to a hot swap HDD.:D

    Case closed!

    I just feel bad for not thinking a bit smarter and solving it myself. I can only hope this helps someone else.

    J
     
  19. grnxnm

    grnxnm Registered Member

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    Hey Folks!

    I'd like to introduce you to Steve Snyder (Wilders user: stevesnyder) who is a technical contributor here at StorageCraft. After StorageCraft transitioned me from my prior development position to management I've been too busy to actively contribute here and so I'm glad to see Steve stepping in to help out. We love hearing feedback (good and bad) from you guys and we definitely take it to heart. There are a lot of features today in ShadowProtect that are a direct result of the feedback from the Wilders forum community. :D
     
  20. stevesnyder

    stevesnyder Registered Member

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    Thank you, Nate. Glad to help where I can. :cool:

    As Nate mentioned, I'm new to this forum. This post from Marse just popped up on my radar yesterday so I tried to offer a quick response. Now that I have some more information I'm going to look into the issue with our Support team and see if we can get a resolution. I know Marse has been working with the European arm of STC (and possibly Australia?) so I don't mean to step on anyone's toes, but if I can help out I will.

    I'll check back in soon after I've had time to research this further.

    Cheers!
     
  21. marse.robert

    marse.robert Registered Member

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    Hi all,

    Feandur kndly suggested that I contacted somone in Australia: I have not been in touch with anyone in Australia

    I will repeat: it was by a complete mistake that I ended up purchasing SPD from the USA, After two failed attempts by SPD support, I asked for a refund.

    5 weeks ago, the US site of SPD informed me that the matter was going to be addressed by a colleague: 2 weeks later I was transferred to the UK arm of SPD. On two occasions the UK support informed me that I would be receiving an email: no email was received.

    THe issue has now been returned to the USA who have told me: the matter is being transferred to a colleague,

    The unresolved problem has cost me four reinstalls of my OS which has caused issues with Microsoft, On demonstrating the problem to the Trading Standards people, I downloaded SPD to be told that I need to buy another licence.

    In coclusion, I have just checked my SPD ticket and Support believe that I purchased SC Server.

    I am merely seeking closure: not further investigation.

    Marse
     
  22. stevesnyder

    stevesnyder Registered Member

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    Hello Marse,

    Yes, I was wondering how much troubleshooting help you wanted when you've already installed Macrium and are happy with it. I was going to offer some troubleshooting steps and/or a personal phone call to help but at this point if you want closure I will definitely help you to get it.

    Would you PM me the ticket number you have open with the Support team. I understand that you purchased ShadowProtect (server?) from the US website but that you fall under the jurisdiction of the UK group. I would like to do what I can from my end (USA) to get this resolved but I need the open ticket to begin tracking things. Feel free to send me a PM with this information. I will have an answer for you before the end of the day.

    Cheers!
     
  23. marse.robert

    marse.robert Registered Member

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    Hi stevesnyder,

    There are a number of very intelligent people at Wilders, and a healthy proportion of these people are using SC. My Grandson's business use the server SC and it is the business

    My Grandson informs me thar the Application far exceeds my needs: my Grandson does not know what my needs are.

    I belong to a golf club and most of us are retired. I want to set up a sytem for the club and I beleve that SC (Server) would be a perfect addition.

    Because of the start we have had I am a bit confused. I am prepared to continue in seeking a solution, and if that solution could be found, I would recommend the adoption of SC to our Club.

    If you are up for a deal, I will retract my demand for a refund, and if you are able to solve the problem that I am experiencing, I will hold to my part of the Agreement.

    Regards

    Marse
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2013
  24. stevesnyder

    stevesnyder Registered Member

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    Hello Marse,

    I want to see you happy with whatever backup solution you decide to use. I'm coming in late in the game on this issue as it seems you've been struggling with policies and processes for some time now. So my goal is to help you find a resolution that you're happy with and to do it quickly.

    I would be happy to bring Support resources to bear so that you can use StorageCraft's ShadowProtect. I truly believe we can work out a solution. However, if you decide you want a refund I will do my best to get that refund to you quickly. I'm fine with either choice.

    If you like you can Private Message me with your phone number and I will call you at a convenient time. Please let me know how you want to proceed.

    Cheers!
     
  25. Feandur

    Feandur Registered Member

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    stevesnyder :
    Steve: As a home user just using SP in the most basic way -to do only complete rather than incremental backups and restores - generally only once a month around the time of patch Tuesday, I would be very happy with a cut down version of SP that was less feature rich. I see a competing product [A******] that is everywhere in the stores, but the average home user has to be a Sherlock Holmes to track down SP.

    That being said, I have been very happy with SP and the help of my local reseller to date. SP has been 110% reliable on XP [v3.3]. Only used it twice on Win 7 [v4].

    It is very regrettable that v5 just won't work for me as a recovery media --no idea why. I'll give it a try in due course on a Win 8 laptop to see what happens.

    PS: It would be great if Storage Craft could provide an Archive-of-old-ISO-versions link on their web page for licensed customers for testing purposes. The "current versions" link just gives me final version of v 3 [v3.5.2] and the current v5 [5.0.1].

    For example, it would be nice to have access to the v4.1.5 ISO, as I know that works ok on Win 7 .

    -with respect, these are just my candid thoughts on the matter.
    thanks

    -cheers,
    feandur
     
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