ShadowProtect continuous incrementals

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by mhob, Mar 29, 2013.

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  1. mhob

    mhob Registered Member

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    How does this actually work? Does it use a lot of resources? My new system has AMD 8350 8-cores and 32GB RAM. I would like to have continuous backups if possible and minimal downtime. Or would it be best to just use RAID 1 SSD's for OS?
     
  2. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    You create a job, specifying various aspects of the job. Mine takes an image Sunday at 6pm. Every weekday it starts at 9:00 and takes an incremental every 30 minutes until 5:00pm Then depending on your settings it creates daily from the interday. On Sunday it creates a weekly and then the last day of the month it creates a monthly. Retention of the various images is user adjustable.

    Resources are negligible. The average incremental during the day takes between 7-10 seconds, and I never feel it run.

    Also the jobs are self healing in that, if you turn the machine off, or in some other way interrupt the job, it corrects itself.

    Pete
     
  3. mhob

    mhob Registered Member

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    Thank you very much for your explanation. I appreciate. Great to hear it only takes a short time for the incrementals.
     
  4. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    You are welcome. Feel free to ask any further questions.

    Pete
     
  5. beethoven

    beethoven Registered Member

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    Peter, I dabbled with that a few years ago but then went back to a simplified way of using incrementals (3 times a day) with 6 full images on a weekly basis to be retained.
    If I remember correctly, for continuous incrementals and automatic conversion to dailies, weeklies and monthlies, do you need to use a specific function or module?
     
  6. mhob

    mhob Registered Member

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    All of my drives are GPT. The Disk Map in SP shows each drive with a 127MB "Unrecognized/unknown" partition. My Win8 boot drive has a Recovery volume, No Label *.\ volume 96MB FAT32, and a No Label *:\ 128MB partitions on it. Shadowprotect backup status on those partitions is "failed, incrementals not supported on this volume", snapshot destroyed.

    So on my GPT boot drive, all I need to backup is my Recovery and C: partitions?
    Why are these other partitions unrecognized?
     
  7. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    That one I don't know. I am still on XP PRo, so I only have one standard partition. You might go to the shadow Protect Forum and ask there.

    Pete
     
  8. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    Yes it's called ImageManger. On older versions it came on the ISO of the CD. On later versions it's a free download.

    Pete
     
  9. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    mhob,

    In Disk Management, are either of these partitions described as "EFI System Partition"?
     
  10. mhob

    mhob Registered Member

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    See screenshots.
    s2.png

    s1.png
     
  11. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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  12. Robin A.

    Robin A. Registered Member

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    There shouldn´t be any problem to back up the EFI System Partition, it´s a FAT partition. The MSR partition can only be backed up in "sector by sector" or raw mode. Perhaps this mode isn´t supported in incremental backups.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2013
  13. mhob

    mhob Registered Member

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    I asked the same questions on Storagecraft forums, and they responded with the following. Hopefully this information will help someone else too, in the future.

     
  14. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    mhob,

    Did the forum say how to backup and restore the EFI System Partition and the MSR?

    Edit.... Which SP version do you own?
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2013
  15. mhob

    mhob Registered Member

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    That's all they said in that quote. I havent replied back to them yet. I own SP 5 Desktop.
     
  16. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    OK, because that quote doesn't apply to a UEFI system.
     
  17. mhob

    mhob Registered Member

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    Yeah, it's interesting that their support can't give a clear answer. All I want, is to create a full backup image of drive C:, of all partitions. What good is backup software, if it can't read some of those system partitions? They make it sound like that if I ever have to restore, that their software only restores C: and not the other partitions.

    I tried O&O DiskImage, and what it does is take a "forensic" backup of those system partitions and adds it to the backup image. Why can't SP do this?
     
  18. mhob

    mhob Registered Member

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    So on their forums, I found this post:
    http://www.storagecraft.com/support/forum/gpt-disks-and-shadow-protect

    So it looks like SP is not quite UEFI/GPT ready. I need to be able to make drive C: bootable after a crash and restore ALL partitions, not just C:. Since SP can't do this, what do you suggest?
     
  19. Robin A.

    Robin A. Registered Member

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    One approach is to clone the UEFI boot disk in "sector by sector" mode. This can be done with Paragon HDM 12.

    You can also use Partition Wizard. The latest 7.8 version can "copy UEFI boot disk", http://www.partitionwizard.com/.

    See also http://www.ocztechnologyforum.com/forum/showthread.php?98113-Cloning-a-GPT-Drive.

    It seems that in either case the cloned disk must be "repaired" after the clone operation to make it bootable. Paragon warns about this (and the above link confirms it). The repair can be done with the Paragon program or a Windows repair disk.

    Another approach using Paragon would be to create an image of the whole disk, also in sector by sector (or "raw") mode.

    I haven't´ tried these procedures, but I am planning to do so soon in a new Lenovo laptop with Windows 7.
     
  20. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Robin,

    I'm not so sure about the Raw mode imaging. You can just image the EFI System partition, the MSR partition and the OS partition conventionally and restore them to a new drive. At least you can with IFW.

    Edit... IFW automatically updates the EFI System partition (during a restore to a new drive) so a startup repair isn't needed.
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2013
  21. Robin A.

    Robin A. Registered Member

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    Good, that´s another alternative. To create a normal (used sectors only) image and restore it to a new disk to recover an UEFI system. Perhaps it doesn´t matter if the MSR is corrupted in the process, Windows can recover it as long as it´s present. I´ll try this method.

    Paragon can also update the EFI partition to make the disk bootable, as long as the operation is done with a 64-bit WinPE. This isn´t automatic, an option ("Switch EFI to boot from destination drive") must be selected. If a 32-bit medium is used, this option doesn´t appear and the repair must be done manually after the restore.
     
  22. mhob

    mhob Registered Member

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  23. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    mhob,

    That's OK if you just have an OS issue and you need to restore a C: drive image to the same HD. But if you have a HD failure you need to restore all partitions to the new HD. So you must have backup images of all partitions.
     
  24. mhob

    mhob Registered Member

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    Thats what I thought too, since the EFI contains boot information. The full backup does backup all partitions successfully on the OS boot drive. The problem is with incrementals and the continuous incrementals.

    I created a scheduled backup job with continuous incrementals. On Sunday, it creates a full backup. Other days, it is scheduled for continuous incrementals of all partitions, but these fail. So the whole backup job is flagged as "failed", even though C: partition is successfully. ShadowProtect says you only need to backup the EFI, Windows Reserved partitions once every 6 months or so. Is that correct? On a GPT disk, where is the FAT table stored, on partition C with the OS?
     
  25. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Sounds reasonable. Three small partitions to backup every 6 months.
     
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