Question about ShadowProtect V. 3.5

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by Osaban, Sep 30, 2009.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Posts:
    4,222
    I've recently updated to version 3.5 for my Vista machine and XP pro. I always backup with the recovery CD as I prefer to have no interaction with the OS.

    With Vista as I start the backup wizard, it shows the drives available: My C: drive and my USB E: external drive. For some reasons this time my C: drive is seen as E: and my USB E: is seen as C:. This has never happened before, and it doesn't occur with the XP machine. I can recognize the drives by the amount of data, still it is not supposed to happen (if I try to backup within Windows the drives are recognized correctly).

    Any idea as to why this is happenning? Thanks in advance for any feedback.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2009
  2. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Posts:
    4,222
    I've done some tests and by trial and error this is what I found out: It has nothing to do with SP version 3.5; when I tested it with v.3.4 (which had always worked normally) I had the same results. I tried a different USB drive but got always the same letter mismatch.

    When I tried a different USB port (I have 3 available) the drive letters were assigned correctly. So, the USB port that I normally use to perform my backups is responsible for assigning the wrong letters. Why is that happening? Anybody?
     
  3. ambient_88

    ambient_88 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2008
    Posts:
    854
    Windows has a habit of rearranging drive letters, especially when you have multiple devices that you connect. Just this morning, my USB drive was assigned a different letter because I connected my iPod first. I don't really know why that happens; I just live with it since it's been like that for a while.
     
  4. LenC

    LenC Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2006
    Posts:
    846
    Location:
    CT, USA
    Following up on Ambient 88's comments, I've had some unpredictable results with USB connections - I've stopped trying to understand them and just live with them and work around them.

    For example, my WD MyBook is only recognized on one of my USB connections - on the other 2, I get an error message saying the device is not recognized. It just so happens, I am connecting it to run Shadow Protect 3.4, but that's irrelevant. This is a laptop with Vista home on it.

    I've read that windows will reinstall drivers for the same device if you reconnect it to a different USB port - and that can cause problems. Since I tend to select USB ports randomly, I'm sure I have connected on multiple ports over time. I frankly don't know if that has anything to do with it.
     
  5. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Posts:
    4,222
    I'm not that concerned either, although when we deal with images and restoring I think (correct me if I'm wrong ) wrong letters could lead to errors. I've just created a new image on a different USB port with no letter mismatch. SP as usual is flawless, I just can't stand situations which suddenly appear without a logical explanation.
     
  6. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Posts:
    4,222
    Well, I'm relieved to hear that it isn't an isolated case, although this is the first time it happens to me in 3 years of backing up routines.
     
  7. ambient_88

    ambient_88 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2008
    Posts:
    854
    Yes, it can be disastrous if one does not pay attention. If I remember correctly, lodore experienced this issue when one of the programs he was testing reassigned the drive letters.
     
  8. grnxnm

    grnxnm Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2006
    Posts:
    391
    Location:
    USA
    WinPE itself is responsible for those *temporary* drive letter assignments. Keep in mind that they are temporary assignements and ONLY affect the WinPE environment. The drive letters assigned by WinPE are only in RAM and do not affect anything down on your hard disk. It's basically a non-issue (although it can be a bit confusing). When people are unsure of which drive is which, under WinPE, I usually ask them to just look at the disk map tab which is a graphical view of the various disks and partitions, with the drive letters temprorarily assigned by WinPE. This way they know which drive letters to use during their WinPE session.
     
  9. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Posts:
    17,047
    I see that also on two different XP SP3 machines. One is right in the recovery environment, one is reversed. Isn't just shadow protect, but also happens with anything I load in Bartpe. Good reason for labeling the drives clearly.
     
  10. kennyboy

    kennyboy Registered Member

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2006
    Posts:
    404

    It really shouldn't be an issue as long as one is aware of it potentially happening, and looks out for it. As Peter says, it is even less of an issue if you get into the habit of labeling all drives so that they can be recognized by their name, rather than their assigned drive letter.
     
  11. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Posts:
    4,222
    Thank you all, for the reassuring feedback.
     
  12. HAN

    HAN Registered Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2005
    Posts:
    2,080
    Location:
    USA
    I avoid this issue by waiting until Win PE has loaded. I then plug in my USB drive and refresh the volume info. It always seems to get it right when doing it this way...
     
  13. grnxnm

    grnxnm Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2006
    Posts:
    391
    Location:
    USA
    Oh yeah, good point! Some hardware will enumerate connected USB drives before any connected fixed disks. WinPE's temporary drive letters are assigned to the partitions in order, from disk 0 onward. So if your hardware is enumerating a USB disk as disk 0 then the first volume on that USB disk will be given the temporary WinPE drive letter C: and then your OS volume on your real hard drive will end up being D: and so on. That point about volume labels is a good one too.

    Caveat: While the Recommended (Vista-based) ShadowProtect Recovery Environment is able to enumerate USB drives which are connected after WinPE has booted, the Legacy (2003-based) WinPE environment requires that you connect any USB drives you intend to use before you boot the Legacy environment. This is a WinPE limitation.
     
  14. HAN

    HAN Registered Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2005
    Posts:
    2,080
    Location:
    USA
    I always use the Vista environment, so that explains why it works. Haven't used the Win 200x setup since the Vista one became available.
     
Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.