RollbackRx- is this another bug?

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by aigle, Jun 27, 2006.

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  1. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    It was about one and a half month back when I formatted my HD and installed RollbackRx again. The chkdsk bug is now well known an I was well prepared to tolerate it and despite off and on chkdsk run, mainly on system crashes, this time my snapshots were mostly Ok( my strategy is that if I get chkdsk run on one snapshot I usually delete that snapshot as in my experience that snapshot will no longer be reliable.
    There seems to be another very serious issue with RollbackRx that I have noticed second time and I don't know why nobody has mentioned it so far.
    It seems that when u make many snapshots RollbackRx gradually takes ur HD space, as it should do. After so many snapshots when u try to delete the snapshots and expect to reclaim the used space it seems that RollBackRx deletes the snapshots but fails to reclaim the used space.
    I have noticed it second time now( and I am using RollbackRx second time also).
    When I formatted my system and installed RollBackRx one and half month back, my total system was about 4.7 GB( XP Home) without any software on it( I formatted my laptop with Toshiba recovery CD and uninstalled security software from Norton).
    Gradually over a period of time I made so many snapshots and deleted many of them as well. I remember when I have about 8 snapshots, my used HD space was about 9Gb( as shown by RollbackRx data). Lastly my HD used space reached to about 22GB with more than 20 snapshots and at this stage I decided to delete extra snapshots. I deleted most of them and left only 9 snapshots. At this stage I expected to have about 10 GB of my HD used but I was surprised that the HS space used was about 21GB. Sure RollBackRx deleted the snapshots but it failed to reclaim the used space again.
    See the snapshots

    Here are the snapshots 1 to 9 with the space used by them( almost same as used by more than 20 snapshots). Pls keep in mind that before getting this data from RollBackRx, I defragmented my snapshot by RollbackRx many times and rebooted my Pc as well. Moreover none of my snapshots has any data stored( that I actually keep on CDs and USB drives), no downloads etc- infact every snapshot is exactly the same as my basic installation plus few security appliances( like Antivirus, antispyware, firewall etc) and software( like widgets, download manager, zip utilities, etc)-- so don't expect that any of my snapshots has many Giga of data in addition to basic OS.
    Details of snapshots as follows

    Snapshot 1 -- basic snapshot -- XP Home OS
    2 -- basic plus few small software like 7-zip, ObjectDock etc
    3 -- above plus browsers like opera and firefox etc
    4 -- above plus some software like Antivirus, Antispywares
    5 -- above plus Comodo Firewall, Antispywares etc
    6 -- above plus windows and antivirus updates
    7 -- above plus GesWall sandbox installation
    8 -- above plus Comodo firewall updated
    9 -- above plus security appliances updated plus some tweaks
     

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  2. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Here are detailed properties of these snapshots as taken from the RollBackRx.
    I was astonished to see that there was suddenly a large increase in the HD space usage from snapshot 4 to 5( from 7.5GB to 15 GB).
    It's so strange- the only added software in snapshot 5 were Comodo firewall, Spyware Doctor, Windows Defender, Locate beta and CCleaner( I have posted the pic of Programme Files( where most of the new software installations put their files) of these two snapshots and u can see the new software). Remember there is no DATA in my system, no downloads etc and these software with their default installation can never take more then few GB HD space.
     

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  3. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    There again seems to be a sudden large increase in the HD space usage from snapshot 6 to 7( from 15 to 21 GB). It's eve hard to believe- the only thing I did was that I updated Comodo firewall to latest version in snapshot 6 and then I took snapshot7.

    The matter does not finished here, I was really disappointed so I deleted snapshots 5, 6 and 7 to reclaim the space used by these snapshots and the only space I gained was less than 1 GB.

    So I don't know what is happening here. I am clear that RollBackRx is using the space but it fails to reclaim it back when I delete my snapshots. However as u have seen it does not happen with all snapshots but rather with random snapshots and I am very much sure about my findings.
    I will write all these matters to the support and will see the response.
    I need ur feedback, especially from RollBackRx users and finally I am sorry if I made u confused somewhere as it seems a bit hard for me to explain in a very clear manner. If u need more explanation, comment and I will reply.
     

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  4. pvsurfer

    pvsurfer Registered Member

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    Hi aigle~

    I definitely observed that as well when I was using RBx. Since I was much more concerned with RBx's instability and the havoc it was bringing about to my systems, the space it consumed/released for its snapshots was of far less concern to me at the time.

    But now that you have brought up that subject, I would just like to add that HDS' feature-statement "RollBack Rx™ only takes 0.07% of total hard disk space" is deceiving (to say the very least)!

    ~pv
     
  5. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    Hi Guys

    I didn't observe this that closely, and I noticed Aigle did say he defragged with with Rollback so that shouldn't be an issue. I suspect there is indeed more problems with their concept.

    Remember when you take a snapshot with FDISR you are creating completely separate copies of all your files, and depending which snapshot you are in you are just working with files using windows files mechanism. Rollback is a whole different beast. First it takes the windows files commands and passes them thru it's driver to it's index system. Sam told me that one problem is they really need Rollbacks driver to be at the top of the stack, but many of the new security programs push it down. So your file instructions may have to go thru the security drivers first with who knows what affect.

    Then consider when you open and modify a file and then resave it windows rewrites it and saves it's new location on the drive. In Rollback you create a snapshot. Nothing has happened except Rollback has created it's own pointers to the files sectors. Then you modify the file and it is re written else where, and if you rollback RBX goes back to it's original pointers and sectors. If on the other hand you create a new snapshot, it keeps pointers to both sets of sectors for that file. With all this going on with their indexing system, and the driver and potential problems there it becomes less surprising to me there are issues.

    FDISR has a big advantage in that it's biggest weak point is at boot when it swaps itself from one set of files to the other. Far less that can go wrong.

    Aigle my suggestion would be this. IF you have the time, inclination and can afford the risks you can work it thru with HDS. If not, then I would just do what others of have done. Move on. The best we can do here is confirm there are serious problems, and I know you are already aware of that.

    Pete

    PS. My short answer to your question posed in the thread title is... Probably yes.
     
  6. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Hi1 same here. Last time when I used Rollback before formatting my HD. I noticed exactly same problem but just like u at that time I was more concerned about the stability issue so I did not bother much( also I was just thinking may be I put lot of downloaded files in my different snapshots) but this time after the format I was very keen and kept all my data on USB drive and CDs. Before taking any snapshot I check my downliads folfer and if there is any file i remove it. Not only this I run CCleanet before most of snapshots( in modest settings though and not touching the registry at all) and defragment the snapshots before taking a new snapshot. So now I can definitely report this bug. I have mailed to Andrew as well though I am not so hopeful( BTW, they have given their site a new look with same big claims)!!
    Infact if some users can remember I did made a thread aboyt this at that tiem as well but it was not noticed much as all were more concerned about the stability issue. U can see it here

    https://www.wilderssecurity.com/showthread.php?t=130305&highlight=Space RollbackRx
     
  7. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Hi Peter! Not only defragged but I can say I defragged again and again, so many times and even on system start up before the OS loads itself, just to be sure.
    I mailed to Anderw already.
    I will sure get FDISR but at the moment I will just wait until I upgrade to Vista. Until that I hope to manage with few snapshots and less playing with my system.
    Thanks. I am happy that at least I have made my point as until now I am not sure they will accept this issue. And if they accept, then it might be the end of this software at the moment.
    I agree that it,s more like an alpha software, just launched to the market.
     
  8. Atomas31

    Atomas31 Registered Member

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    Hi Aigle,

    Why didn't you post your problem with Rollback RX on the Rollback RX forum (on their new website) : http://horizondatasys.com/forums/

    You might have better luck to receive an answer directly from them... I hope!

    Best regards,
    Atomas31
     
  9. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    I never knew that they started the forums. I will post there as well and I have already mailed to them. Thanks.
     
  10. pvsurfer

    pvsurfer Registered Member

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    Judging from zero user-posts todate, it doesn't look like anyone else knows about it either! ;)
     
  11. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Ya! and I doubt they will like a first post to be like this.
     
  12. Atomas31

    Atomas31 Registered Member

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    Why not? Ain't a support issue forum suppose to be to report problem and inform them about issues so they can get them resolved?

    As for having no post yet, no wonder since it is online and fully functionnal only for about a few days...
     
  13. nicM

    nicM nico-nico

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    I've just deleted most of my snapshots 5 mn ago, and after seeing your post, I did check the used space size before and after the deletion : I had 108 snapshots, full of softwares installs, etc (quite a mess indeed ;) ), and total used space was +/- 18 Ms. Now it is 9 Ms with 5 snapshots, so for me, the space recovery is working.

    But I've the feeling this recovery is made after Rollback's "maintenance" : I had to reboot and make a maintenance cycle offline to recover this space.


    As for problems reported here about Rollback : After 3 months of "heavy" use, I've never had any problem with Rollback so far - except maybe a chkdsk at reboot 2-3 times.

    For me Rollback is as much robust and reliable as it claims :) , the only issue being the activation limitation discussed here few weeks ago, although I think it was fixed in a new version.

    nicM
     
  14. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    U are the lucky one.
    I did noticed that soem users here have no much issues like this. It might be due to different set up as it is basically the conflict with the driver of RollbackRx , if the driver is not having much conflicts on ur system, u will be mosty OK.
    BTW, which version u are using? May be some difference of version?
     
  15. nicM

    nicM nico-nico

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    Lucky one, I don't know ;) . But I'm still running v 7.2.1, on an old (2 years and a half) HP laptop. Even the worst situations went fine, so I think I'll wait before to install the new one (7.2.2 or 7.2.3 ?)


    nicM
     
  16. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    HI Nicm

    I'd be curious if your lash up could survive my crash test. It's mainly just doing 4 or 5 power resets while the computer is logging on, or starting a program etc. Wouldn't blame you if you didn't want to try it, but that is my definition of "heavy" usage. FDISR handles it fine with no chkdsk issues.

    Pete
     
  17. nicM

    nicM nico-nico

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    Hi Peter,

    I didn't perform anything similar to your crash test indeed :D , the kind of "crash test" I had to face is the computer litterally locked down by malwares. It happened to me lots of times during tests, then I had to "force" reboots with the power button. I sometimes had a chkdsk during the reboot, but NOT always, and I've never had any issue while restoring after these malwares tests later.

    Another "heavy" use illustration for me was to run the same apps, or very close apps, on different groups of snapshots (for example several different betas of Process Guard, of ProSecurity, etc) : Never had problems here too, although my setup was a real mess :eek: with + 100 snapshots, with daily restore from one to others !

    Well this malware and software mess was my definition of "heavy" use.

    nicM
     
  18. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    That does sound equally grim. Had another interesting test, that a glutton for punishment could try. KAV uses a dll, that is tied to winlogon.exe. The install got corrupted and I had to delete that dll. Couldn't get rid of it even in safe mode. Finally found a utility called unlocker that did a brute force unlock and then I could delete it. Windows really took it personally. Got a BSOD that just said Fatal windows error, windows inoperable and shutting down. I held my breath until I saw the FDISR reboot screen. I didn't need it and the system rebooted fine, but man that reboot screen was comforting.

    Pete
     
  19. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    I have faced chkdsk run and snapshot corruption during power reset, more than once.
     
  20. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    "About" tells only version 7.2( no details after 2-- 2.1 or 2.2 or 2.3). Don,t know how I can know it exactly.
     
  21. nicM

    nicM nico-nico

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    Well, I did run a KIS 2006 trial for few weeks, never had any problems here either.

    But I had few "unbootable" snapshots too, Windows unbootable in normal or safe mode. Was not a problem, since I just had to switch to another snapshot :cool: before next reboot, and could even recover files from the crashed snapshot.

    In fact, even when Rollback's processes were altered by some malwares (happened during my tests about DefenseWall), I never had problems after the next snapshot restore.

    I understand some people are experiencing problems with Rollback, but for me it was solid as rock so far ;) .


    @ aigle : That's strange, my "about" panel shows 7.2.1 o_O

    Cheers,
    nicM
     
  22. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    HI nicM

    Problem I had was from a bungled install of KAV. I didn't worry about it for several builds, so the issue propagated thru several snapshots. Then time came to deal with it. What I was saying is I don't have much confidence as to the effect what I had to do might have had on Rollback.

    Pete
     
  23. nicM

    nicM nico-nico

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    Hi Peter,

    Didn't you try a new/clean install of KAV in a snapshot made before to install it?

    I did take care to practice a sort of "containment" in my snapshots for these tests, that's why I had 3 "groups" of snapshots, totally separated, it allowed me to install and reinstall a bunch of apps :) . Everytime I had a problem, I reverted to the last "clean" snaphot from the same group.

    nicM
     
  24. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    I've had KAV beta's on my system so long that a snapshot with out a KAV beta would be hopelessly out of date. Been using KAV beta's as my only AV for quite a while, as it working well. Solution was actually simple with just one nasty BSOD. FDISR was the fall back if the fix went astay. I don't try and keep FDISR snapshot for every little contingency, there'd be too many and I'd just get confused:D
     
  25. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    That,s really strange. Can u renmember when didu download ur verseion? I did in March approximately.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2006
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