"TiRoll" - True Image montly rolling backup script

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by TonioRoffo, May 23, 2005.

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  1. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    Hello,

    Using a regular drive as destination in True Image (instead of the Secure Zone) is a bit limited when it comes to image housekeeping.

    For this I've written TiRoll.

    In short, it will enable you to do rolling backups on a monthly basis (One base backup / month and then incrementals) and let you decide to keep 2, 3, 4 or 6 sets of backups at each time. Each month will correspond to a backup set.

    Scheduling in Acronis is as simple as making 1(!) incremental daily schedule towards a substituted drive.

    TiRoll will take care of mapping this "virtual" drive to the right subfolder in your backup directory and clearing out the oldest backup sets.

    Be aware that this is a hardly tested, very rough beta, with no interface/help/checking whatsoever, but it does the job if you take time to read the readme.

    All suggestions are welcome, however, I won't expand the functionality beyond what I think is needed myself. I will offer this as open source, feel free to change it as you like, just give credits and don't change the name. The source is ugly but it works. I don't have time to work on it frantically, but if anyone wants to expand this to a fully "backup exec", go ahead :D

    Thanks to MiniMax for hosting the file on his site.

    Here is the link: TiRoll Current Version

    If it's not yet reachable, hang on, minimax is working on it :D
     
  2. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    Re: "TiRoll" - True Image monthly rolling backup script

    For those who like to fiddle with a source and compile it themselves:

    TiRoll was written using FBSL

    The Beta 1 "source" is below:

     
  3. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    Hmm, nobody seems to need this... or maybe it's because the link doesn't work, sorry about that.

    Mail me if you want the .exe
     
  4. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

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    Hello Tonio,

    Thank you for your eagerness to share your experience and help other who use Acronis True Image.

    I think the main reason why nobody answers is that they just use it, don't you think so? I am sure this TiRoll is already used by many people.

    Thank you.
    --
    Ilya Toytman
     
  5. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    I guess it's more because the download link doesn't work, Ilya! :D

    Or they have to compile it themselves...
     
  6. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    Ilya, could I be allowed to post a .ZIP file on this thread? I know it is against Wilders wishes, but maybe in a controlled way, like here, it could be allowed?

    I think if it can be easily downloaded, if will be used. If it's popular we can make the thread sticky.
     
  7. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

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    Hello Tonio,

    Could you please send the script you describe in .zip archive to support@acronis.com along with the link to this thread indicating in the subject that you want to contact Ilya Toytman. I will try to help you with this script.

    Thank you.
    --
    Ilya Toytman
     
  8. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    I'm sorry to inform that for the moment, TiRoll is useless.

    Under Win2003, Acronis doesn't seem to work with a "subst" target drive. I'm rewriting it to point to a local share, but this will slow things down considerably.

    I just wish Acronis push that last 5% to implement superb image housekeeping and get rid of those last little bugs.

    I can't get Acronis to work like I want in a Production environment, I'll have to buy Livestate instead.

    Too bad. I'm holding on to the license we ordered and hopefully we can use it in the future, when things get better...
     
  9. noisyjazzman

    noisyjazzman Registered Member

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    Have you considered using NTFS junctions instead of either shares or mapped drives? In case you don't know -- junctions are similar to unix soft links (though for directories only); they are implemented using reparse points, but you don't need to know that to use them. Basically you can just map any empty directory to any other NTFS directory (on any drive). So your script could just map, say, an <anydrive>\backups directory to wherever you want that backup to go.

    Windows (XP, 2000 or 2003 server etc) doesn't come with any tools to manipulate junctions, but sysinternals (as so often) come to the rescue with a little command-line app called 'junction.exe' (http://www.sysinternals.com/Utilities/Junction.html).
     
  10. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    I new about the NTFS way of mounting drives in empty folders, from the disk manager.

    I didn't know about junction from sysinternals! I'll give it a look. Thanks!

    But I'm not happy with the latest TI build, i'm still having problems with scheduling. Sometimes the schedule runs, sometimes it doesn't...
     
  11. noisyjazzman

    noisyjazzman Registered Member

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    It's typically wierd of Microsoft to provide the junction facility in NTFS, which is incredibly useful, but no interface to use it. Sysinterals are good at filling those kinds of gaps ..
     
  12. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    True. Sysinternals got a lot of stuff that is really helpful, and almost everything is free for use.

    Regmon is fantastic, newSID is absolutely fabulous, just to name 2 utilities.
     
  13. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    I've succesfully altered TiRoll to use junctions, works like a charm.

    Only thing I don't know, if there is a junction present in a disk you backup with TI, will it include what's in the junction, or only backup the junction itself?

    Still have to test TiRoll/Junction with a scheduled task, but my d*mn tasks never seem to run :(
     
  14. noisyjazzman

    noisyjazzman Registered Member

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    I back up a drive with a couple of junctions on it. Haven't had to restore any yet (and should have, but haven't, tried a test restore), but if I explore the .tib, a dir listing shows '<junction>' as expected (ie. so the archive contains a junction at that point, and not contents of the directory pointed to). Of course if the junction refers to a directory on a different drive, then that drive will have to exist in the same configuration for the junction to still work after the restore.

    It looks to me as far as I can see without testing a restore, that it all works as you might expect.
     
  15. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    I figured that much. It's sector based so it doesn't "link" to another drive to backup.

    That's a good thing, it means that I can put the "junctioned" drive on my C drive, and link it towards X: - my backup drive.

    TiRoll seems to behave good with junctions, TI doesn't complain either. Susbt didn't work (logging in as another user, the backup couldn't find the subst-ed drive) - the local share on a network kinda worked (but CPU overhead and speed impact) - Junction is as fast as direct to disk!

    Thanks a lot noisyjazzman, I owe you one!
     
  16. noisyjazzman

    noisyjazzman Registered Member

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    Happy to help.
     
  17. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    Thanks Noisyman!

    I'm glad I found this out, even when I'm giving up on TI. Just found out all my backups are totally corrupt using Enterprise 1143.

    That means, no more TiRoll guys, I'm sorry. I'm asking for a refund.
     
  18. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    OK, swallowed my pride, relaxed the customer, and reverted to 1123. We're kinda running right now,

    TiRoll is doing the job.

    Here's the new source *needs* junction.exe from sysinternals!

    Just run a few minutes before backup

    backup with Acronis to [path-to-put-junction] - you'll need to rull TiRoll once to get the junction in place, before planning backup

    TiRoll [path-to-put-junction] [path-with-backups] n
    where n = 2, 3, 4 or 6

    Still beta, so paths need to be in format like this: C:\Path

    No trailing \, no spaces, no "c:\path"... no warranties :D

    Compile with FBSL before use:

    Enjoy.
     
  19. MiniMax

    MiniMax Registered Member

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  20. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    Thanks mate! :D
     
  21. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    I guess this thread needs cleaning up. I would like to change the first post and the link in there. Can this be done? Forum Admins? :D
     
  22. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

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    Hello Tonio,

    I don't think the thread needs to be cleaned up since your first variant works for systems rather than Windows 2003 Server if I am not mistaken. This discussion is quite informative and I am sure it can be helpful for other visitors.

    Thank you.
    --
    Ilya Toytman
     
  23. TonioRoffo

    TonioRoffo Registered Member

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    No, the first version, when scheduled, didn't work. Only manual.

    This is because "subst" is only active for the current user. When TI starts, the "subst" drive is not found, and the backup fails.

    Using junctions, there is no more issue. It's like a UNIX hard-link, mapping one place on the drive to another, handled by the NTFS file system. True Image doesn't know... :D
     
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