Too many incrementals!

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by Gerardicus, May 22, 2006.

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  1. Gerardicus

    Gerardicus Registered Member

    May 22, 2006

    I've been doing daily incremental backups of my main disk onto another disk. Of course now the backup disk is full, caused by the number of incrementals.

    Does anyone know whether I can delete all the incremental backups apart from the latest one? Or do I need to reduce the frequency of the incremental backups to save space?

    Many thanks.
  2. Chutsman

    Chutsman Registered Member

    Jun 17, 2005
    Brandon, Florida, USA
    Incrementals are a chain of backups .... break any link in the chain and you have NO backup whatsoever. Which is why I do not do incrementals. Do you have room for three or four FULL backups?
  3. rbmorse

    rbmorse Registered Member

    Nov 15, 2005
    Albuquerque New Mexico USA
    As I understand things, incrementals are need to retain all of them (and the base full backup) or the entire set is useless.

    You might look at doing differential backups, instead. Each differential + base full backup constitutes a "snapshot" of the partition as of the time it was made and is independent of the other differential file sets. You can delete the differential backup files you don't want to keep to save disk space.
  4. Gerardicus

    Gerardicus Registered Member

    May 22, 2006
    I've got two 160Gb hard disks on my machine. One has 90GB of data, which is what I'm backing up onto the other disk. I don't do 2mb of work every day, but the incrementals are around that size - every day!

    It seems these incrementals are not the way to go then. Soon, the back-ups will be greater than the actual disk its backing up!!!

    Something wrong here!
  5. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

    Oct 31, 2005
    Imaging programs do not look at the Archive bit but rather they look at in-use sectors. If some data gets moved, even though it is unchanged, this will trigger a backup of that sector in an image.

    Things that can cause larger than expected backups are defragging, Windows optimization, System Restore enabled and copying files.
  6. Howard Kaikow

    Howard Kaikow Registered Member

    Apr 10, 2005
    Lots of files get changed every day.

    to see what changes between backups.

    P.S. Incrementals are far better than differentials as they allow you to restore particular versions of files.
  7. savagcl

    savagcl Registered Member

    Jun 21, 2004
    Cant help with the incrementals, dont use them.
    If at all possible, do full backups (preferably to an external HD (or DVD
    now with latest build).

    I do a full backup weekly and retain 3 full backups (as in grandfather,
    father, son concept). Any files that i just must have up-to-date copies
    of, i will put on a floppy or cd-rw until the next full backup.

    Works very well and no scheduling is needed.

    Just something to think about.
  8. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

    Apr 28, 2004
    Hello Gerardicus,

    Thank you for choosing Acronis Disk Backup Software.

    We are very sorry for the delay with the response.

    Please be aware that, as Chutsman has already mentioned above, each new incremental image is based on the initial full backup along with all previously created incrementals. If you delete at least one of your incremental images then all incrementals created after this particular image was created will be of no use as it will be impossible to restore them. Please see section 3.2 of Acronis True Image 9.0 User's Guide for further details.

    You can limit the amount of images created by Acronis True Image in four different ways:

    - Use Backup Server feature (available in Acronis True Image 9.1 Workstation and Acronis True Image 9.1 Enterprise Server for Windows only, details can be found in section 3.5 of the corresponding User's Guides);

    - Use Acronis Secure Zone (see section 3.3 of Acronis True Image 9.0 User's Guide for further details);

    - Use batch file (script) which deletes or renames images as a pre\post-backup command (see section 5.3.3 of the above mentioned User's Guide);

    In the pre\post commands fields of the backup archive creation options you can specify commands or batch files to be automatically executed before and after the backup procedure. You can use any commands supported by Windows command line interface or enter a path to the batch file written in terms of standard Windows scripting rules (see this Microsoft Knowledge Base Article for details).

    Please also take a look at this previous post of mine providing the example of a batch file automatically renaming backups in accordance with the current date.

    - Schedule several pairs of tasks so that several sets of images covering several last weeks\months will be created (see these previous threads for details: Can TI9 control the number of backup sets?, differential back up Q's).

    As for the size of the incremental images, please see seekforever's post #5. Please also note that there is one more reason why the size of your incremental images may be considerably larger than expected. If the file system of a backed up disk\partition is not supported or corrupted then Acronis True Image creates a raw sector-by-sector image of this disk\partition (see this previous thread for details). In order to eliminate the possibility of file-system errors causing backups being too large we recommend that you check each partition of your hard drive by Windows utility in the way described below:

    - For Windows 9x please use Windows menu Start\Run then enter the command "scandskw" and test all drives;

    - For Windows XP please use Windows menu Start\Run, then enter the command "chkdsk c: /r" "chkdsk d: /r" for every partition of your hard drive.

    Note that you will need to reboot your computer in order to scan the system partition.

    If you have any further questions concerning Acronis software, please feel free to submit a request for technical support or post any of them on this forum. We will certainly try to help you in resolving any issues.

    Thank you.
    Alexey Popov
    Last edited: May 26, 2006
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