Use Caution!!!

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by jts, Nov 29, 2004.

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  1. jts

    jts Registered Member

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    Caution!!! I lost everything on my HD. I continual try to have faith in True Image although, once again, I experiencing a disaster:

    I created an image in the secure zone. I checked the log and everything looked good. I then wanted to do some basic HD maintenance thinking that I was completely protected. I cleaned up the HD only to realize that I deleted files, programs that I could still use. No trouble, I have an imaged HD sitting safely in the “zone”.

    I reboot with boot disk. Of course I had to boot 3 or 4 times before I got to the boot screen. I selected the recreate image option. All went well until a text box pops up telling me that the HD had partitions (well of course it does but so what? I’m restoring those partitions). It asked me if I wanted to repartition. I thought that it would repartition the HD, leaving the safety zone intact, and restore the image to those partitions. Instead TI removed all partitions INCLUDING THE SAFETY ZONE. I lost everything. When I tried to reimage the HD, the safety zone was GONE. It was removed.

    I lost everything...... I’m not computing with confidence!!!

    jts
     
  2. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Jts,

    Oh dear. That old adage "RTFM" springs to mind!!!

    Regards
     
  3. John Farrar

    John Farrar Registered Member

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    I'll bet you're not. :( That outcome is just awful if everything was precisely as you state. I am sure it was but for TI to remove your SZ like that does not instill confidence in the software. :doubt:
    Comments from Acronis will be read with interest.
    Good luck
    John
     
  4. Dog Breath

    Dog Breath Guest

    You do not mess with your backup CD for ANY REASON. How can anyone blame TI for this disaster? makes no sense to me.... This is what is wrong with your thinking....

    "I think I will remove some files from my backup disk."

    duhh... how bright is that.

    "I think I will format my backup disk."

    duhh... how smart is that.

    "I think I will throw my backup disk off a bridge into a river and expect TI to be able to recover the backup..."

    That might work... try that...
     
  5. John Farrar

    John Farrar Registered Member

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    I am confused Dog Breath. Where do you get your quotes from because they were certainly not written by jts? Menorcaman, your reference to RTFM may be true but the poor bugger is in deep s**t and needs some help here.

    Is there anything in the manual that says the secure zone will be wiped if you re-partition the drive? Its not very secure if that is true. To me secure means secure i.e protected, untouchable etc. If it's not secure what is the point?
    John
     
  6. jts

    jts Registered Member

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    Dog Breath:

    I'm not sure what you are saying? Where did I say anything like you wrote? Those are not my quotes. I did basic HD maintanence and nothing more. I followed the TI users manual to the letter, my error was having faith in a product with limited results and not saving to CD (but why should that be necessary? That's what the SZ is for). I just wanted a smooth running computer without clutter. Don't you?

    Please be productive in your comments and suggestions. I believe I ran into yet another problem with this software, let's post suggestions so others won't wipe out important files, etc. believing that they are fully protected.

    Thank you for this forum.

    jts
     
  7. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Hello Jts

    Apols for my somewhat flippant remark about "RTFM".

    The SZ was primarily included in TI for those people without access to a second HD or removable media for image storage. It doesn't guard against HD failure or "accidents" such as yours.

    To get to where you ended up you must have had other partitions besides the SZ on your system drive. When susequently restoring you must have elected to restore the whole drive rather than ticking the individual partitions separately. That's the only way you'll get a dialogue box asking whether you want to delete/repartition your HD. However, it does default to the safe option "No, do not delete" and contains a warning that repartitioning will delete all data on the drive. Whilst the SZ is safe from normal Windows applications it clearly cannot survive, what is in effect, a FDISK. That's akin to sawing off the branch you're sitting on.

    I guess the moral of all this is don't bother with the SZ unless you really have no other option and save images to a second HD/removable media instead.

    Regards
     
  8. John Farrar

    John Farrar Registered Member

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    Apols accepted Menorcaman. It was not becoming an ex Cornishman ;) ;)

    Re. the Secure Zone issue. I have not created one as my backups are on a USB external drive which TI does see, plus DVDs. All images have been verified as being OK. With USB external drives being fairly inexpensive that seems to be the best route for backups images.
    Cheers
    John
     
  9. jts

    jts Registered Member

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    I believe you are right... The USB external drive is the only way to go. Even CDs aren't looking all that good.

    I must ask before purchasing new hardware and knowing TI's reputation for not working with commonly available hardware, what external HD is recommended? Which one will WORK EVERYTIME? What size HD will work best with 98 SE and is there a size limit to what 98SE will be able to deal with? (When is enough enough? When does one just write this experience off as an adventure and forget TI?)

    Thank you everyone!!!

    jts
     
  10. John Farrar

    John Farrar Registered Member

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    Hi jts
    My USB drive is a Freecom 80GB which seems to work flawlessly. The beauty of it is that it is not running the whole time. I plug in the USB plug and it fires up and is instantly recognised by XP. On another note. Perhaps it is time for you to move on to XP? ;)
    Cheers
    John
     
  11. sconnell

    sconnell Guest

    I would highly recommend to Acronis that they display a message in big bright letters....no, really big and bright... the kind of message that one is forced to read and must answer a quiz before continuing that:

    - A SZ backup should NOT be considered a primary backup!

    - To over right your partitions because "oh... TI will protect me" is dumb, dumb, double dumb

    Okay, mind you I'm an "expert" in this field so perhaps my way of thinking is more finely attuned to always having multiple redundancy (my career and reputation depend on this).

    Really, you should not blame Acronis for your failure to understand the principals. No offense... but I've read so many negative reports from other postings here on the Acronis website. Seriously, Acronis needs to get a handle on this and start 'plaining why so many people are goofing up. It's not Acronis's TI fault you loose your data! Many new comers are going to get the impression that TI doesn't work when, in fact, it works very well in most situations!

    Okay: here is a tip from my many years of experience -
    * If you have important data, never ever rely on any backup program before you have simulated and recovered from a disaster more than one time.

    * Always have more than one backup of same data stored in two different locations;

    * don't trust *ANY* magnetic media and I'm including hard drives because despite their MTBF rating they can and will die quite unexpectedly! This will render your Secure Zone TI completely useless;

    * Always verify your data (see first point).

    Simple concepts huh? Follow them any and, like myself, I've never lost even a single byte in fifteen years. Believe me, I've suffered many hard drive failures because they are frig'n unreliable (even SCSI drives with their factious 1.2 million hours MTBF - yeah right! More like 20K hours!)

    BTW, if your data is important enough it may still be recoverable (in fact, very likely). I usually charge about $200 - $500 (depending on amount of data and complexity of recovery). I'm sure you can find a data recovery service in your location.

    I wish you good luck,
    Shawn
     
  12. Gauthreau

    Gauthreau Guest


    You're not alone in your problems with TI 8. The ONLY way TI 8 would run on my system was to create a sz and save the backup there. Then the only way I could access it was to run through the "safe" disk set. I orignally created an image on CD, but TI will not let me access the damn thing through the 'safe' startup disks! I RTFM, re-read TFM, then got smart.

    Has Norton Ghost started to look good to you yet?

    Neil
     
  13. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    I fully agree with sconnell. TI 8 has worked well for me, but not only is my data valuable, but the time to rebuild a system. Users do need to understand what these programs do and the difference between partitions and disks. I use a layered approach to backup(read overkill) because I just can't afford a mistake.

    I use Raxco FD-ISR which keeps a bootable image on the main disk. This covers almost everything except a hard disk failure. Then for the disk failure again layers.

    Ghost 2003 images monthly. (reliable but slow)
    Drivesnapshot for weekly images.
    Acronis True Image 8 for weekly images and daily increments
    Retrospect 6.5 for daily backups.

    I verify the images from the recovery CD's

    Do all the backups to an external Firewire Drive, and then for additional redundancy copy the data to a 2nd external drive.

    Might seem like overkill, but the cost of not doing it for me is just to high.
     
  14. Gauthreau

    Gauthreau Guest

    I fully understand what the program was intended to to, but it is of little value to have a backup on a CD that you cannot access. It's about the same as me having a backup on a 12" LP. The only way TI works for me is if I go into safe mode as I mentioned above, but TI wont give me access to my CD drive. Total disk failure would really screw me over and because I can't access the CD's, TI is rather moot.

    Neil
     
  15. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    Hi Neil

    Depending on the size of you main disk, backing up to CD might be iffy at best. My system would take 17 CD's. To much risk that one might go bad and blow the whole thing. Thats why I go to external drives and 2 of them infact.

    Pete
     
  16. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Hello Neil,

    O/S ?
    TI 8 build number ?
    Hardware/drive controller details ?
    RAID/non-RAID ?
    Backup to internal or external device ?

    Regards
     
  17. NetTraveler

    NetTraveler Registered Member

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  18. ocionnfhaolaidh

    ocionnfhaolaidh Registered Member

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    I use a Maxtor "OneTouch" 120GB USB 2.0 external drive, which comes with Dantz Retrospect, and works with Windows 98SE (according to the manual); this was a bargain (IMHO) at a cost of approx £100.

    I don't use the Dantz app, because I prefer Drive Image 7, which is faster and can mirror one's OS. I also use Acronis True Image v5.6.

    Having partitioned the Maxtor, I do a backup to one partition using Drive Image, then another basckup using Acronis. Both work every time I've had to use them -- at one time I did about 25 system rebuilds in a week, and this lot saved me days of work.

    Oh yes, I also do backups to DVD RWs, cause I'm the 'belt and braces' type.

    Can really recommend the Maxtor, though. The only complaint about it is that it's slightly noisy (loud hum), but as I only have it on for my backups, I can live with that.

    HTH.
     
  19. Gauthreau

    Gauthreau Guest

    TI took 5 CD's to backup my system. Norton took 7. I'm running a 40 GB drive on a notebook, and do not have an extra drive to backup to.

    Neil
     
  20. Gauthreau

    Gauthreau Guest


    The specs on my Compaq Presario 2170CA can be found at http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/...&dest_page=softwareCategory&docname=c00030875

    I was using TI 8 build 774.
    I am running XP Home, Service pack 2, all updates and security patches included. I have NOD32 as well.
     
  21. sconnell

    sconnell Registered Member

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    Sorry if I seemed a bit harsh yesterday. I guess I was getting a bit tired of reading all the Acronis bashing when clearly many of these posters were simply looking to place blame somewhere else other than themselves.

    The fact remains, never trust a product without testing it for yourself... Companies like Acronis cannot possibly anticipate every possible hardware permutation out there. TI (and like products) work at a pretty low level and there are always bound to be conflicts were the product simply won't work as intended.

    Contrary to some of the complaints in this forum, Acronis never falsely advertised their product(s). The fine print (the text NO ONE ever reads) clearly stipulates their limit of liability.... or in other words, they cannot guarantee that their software will operate in all instances. This is not negligence on their part, it's simply the reality in developing software for a non-heterogeneous environment.

    Again, I do not work for Acronis but I do work in a similar industry (except we have a lot more control about where our products are installed).

    Hopefully Acronis will work with you on this problem and remember, your data is still likely retrievable.

    Good luck,
    Shawn
     
  22. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Looks like a fairly standard notebook setup, although the link you provided doesn't identify the HD controller chipset.

    You advise that TI only works for you using the "Safe" boot rescue CD. What exactly happened when you attempted to boot from the "Full" version of the Rescue CD? Did it freeze at the "Acronis is loading" screen, the blue Acronis flash screen or at some stage during an image creation?

    Regards
     
  23. sick0

    sick0 Registered Member

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    i dont know if i understand you correctly but should'nt you choose "Restore image" instead of "recreate image"?

    no offense meant but some of the problems i heard about True Image were due to "user error" and not directly related to True Image.

    i also suggest a user manual with a more layman's term approach is needed....
     
  24. Gauthreau

    Gauthreau Guest


    Absolutely nothing happens after the "Acronis Loading..." when I boot from the "Full" version of the Rescue CD. The Rescue CD was created from within Acronis. I get no blue screens; I get no option to select anything. All I see is black screen. This is not a user error.

    However, I did download a Boot CD iso from the website, and am NOW able to access my CD drive. There is a problem with the way Acronis creates the Rescue media from within the program itself.

    Neil
     
  25. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    hello Neil

    I doubt if it's a problem with the way TI creates a rescue CD. More likely that the Acronis Development Team provided you with a special ISO file created specifically for your hardware configuration. They did the same for me some time ago when TI 7 didn't detect my HD sitting on its ITE8212 GigaRAID controller. Hopefully Acronis can incorporate your "fix" into the next build of TI 8 without breaking what already works well for many of us!!

    Regards
     
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