Why are slices increasing?

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by mfabien, Dec 22, 2006.

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  1. mfabien

    mfabien Registered Member

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    My Backup of December 14 (Full Image backups) had 5 slices.

    My Backup of December 19 had 9 slices. Only difference in storage space was possibly the addition of a printer with its Photoshop application.

    My backup of December 22 done after deleting the December 14 archive and this latest one has 13 slices.

    Therefore, Backups are increasing by 4 slices each time... is that significant, does it mean anything?

    And why does the Backups now take over an hour when the first one took 26 minutes?
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2006
  2. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    Windows does things to the disk so it is never the same as it was before but these things don't tend to be large. However, if you have Windows Restore operational it can contribute significantly to used space as you install and remove software. The default settings for Windows Restore is around 10% of the partition.

    Lots of TI users either disable it or limit its size such that they can capture one or two installation events.
     
  3. foghorne

    foghorne Registered Member

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    You don't give much configuration information, so I need to guess.
    You are not storing your backup on your source drive are you. This will have the effect you describe.

    F.
     
  4. mfabien

    mfabien Registered Member

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    The Backups are stored in an external drive connected by USB. That drive is dedicated to the archiving function.

    I do not use incremental or differential archiving but strictly "Full disk Image archiving" of my internal disk. And I delete the oldest one and keep the latest before I archive a new Full disk Image.

    Am I to expect another + 4 slices next week (I archive once a week) to total 17 slices? Would it change if I deleted all archives before doing a new one? Not that I'm worried about HDD disk space, the external drive is 250 GB and I backup about 25 GB.
     
  5. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Hello mfabien,

    In his reply at Post #2 above, seekforever wondered whether you had the Windows "Restore" feature enabled. Do You? Also, do you have any other application creating routine backups of your system such as Norton (Symantic) Go-Back?

    Regards
     
  6. mfabien

    mfabien Registered Member

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    Yes my Windows "Restore" is always on. Should I disable it? Permanently or only during archiving?

    No other backup applications.
     
  7. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    You have to decide whether you want to keep restore points which allow you to restore your system to the way it was when the restore point was created. Windows automatically creates restore points at various times such as when new software is installed. I think it also does it based on elapsed time as well.

    If you are making regular backups you don't need Windows Restore particularly if you make an image backup before installing new software. If the new software or anything else ruins your windows installation you can just restore your last image backup. An image backup is much more comprehensive than using System Restore.

    My System Restore is still active for my C drive but has a maximum of 200 MB. Depending on what activity triggered the System Restore, this will likely only hold a small number of Restore Points say less than 3.

    Disabling System Restore prior to doing a backup does not reduce the space being used during the backup such that it can then be turned on and you will still have the restore points after the backup is done. However, I think it will reduce the space by virtue of deleting all restore points. This may not be so bad if you remember to do it since it should reduce the space needed for the image but you have to remember to turn Windows Restore back on after the backup if you wish to use it.
     
  8. mfabien

    mfabien Registered Member

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    OK. Reduced the disk space for restore from 12 % (13618 MB) to 1% (1541 MB).

    Before doing the next Full archive, I will disable Restore before the image process.

    Thanks Seekforever, Foghome and Menorcaman.
     
  9. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    As you are making regular full image backups you can either permanently disable it, reduce the number of Windows system restore points by setting the reserved drive space to 5% (or less if you have a large system disk) or else delete all but the most recent Windows restore point just prior to starting TI for your backup task (open "My Computer", right click on "Properties" and click on "Disk Cleanup". Select the "More Options" tab and then click the "Clean up..." button for System Restore).

    Regards
     
  10. Bruce Mahnke

    Bruce Mahnke Registered Member

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    Turning off System Restore or setting it to a very small percentage (perhaps 1-2%) should solve the growing size issue. You don't need to disable it prior to creating an image. Old restore points in excess of the size you select will automatically be deleted. Turning off System Restore for your USB drive would be advisable.
     
  11. mfabien

    mfabien Registered Member

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    When I reduced space for Restore, in the last hour or so, from 12% to 1%, it took more than a minute for the hour glass beside the mouse arrow to remove itself. I assume that a deletion took place for restore data exceeding the 1541 MB limit now applicable.

    But I do see your point about disabling restore permanently. I'll note next Friday (my archiving day) how many slices I get with Restore closed during archiving...
     
  12. mfabien

    mfabien Registered Member

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    USB drive has no operating system. Are you saying that Windows Restore on my internal drive has an impact on my external drive?
     
  13. Bruce Mahnke

    Bruce Mahnke Registered Member

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    No. When you go to System Restore you will most likely see that both drives exist, mine do. If you have System Restore enabled for the USB drive some restore points should exist for that also causing the restore folder to grow. The restore data is located in a folder on the C: drive but it may be a hidden one and I don't have one since System Restore is turned off for all drives.
     
  14. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Hi Bruce,

    Are you sure your external USB drive shows up under Windows Restore - Settings (mine doesn't)? As far as I'm aware, you can't enable Windows Restore on an external USB drive :cool:.

    Regards
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2006
  15. Long View

    Long View Registered Member

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    It may not help with your immediate problem but provided Acronis works I would get rid of Windows System restore completely - it is just about as close as a program can come to being "evil". even when it works it is little better than useless, providing a band aid solution. so disable system restore and delete all old restore points.

    By the way - what do you mean by slices ? when I make a full image to a usb I just get one image ( file) with the size growing slowly over time as more programs are added. when I image my data partition this does grow more quickly as I'm adding new files daily.
     
  16. Bruce Mahnke

    Bruce Mahnke Registered Member

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    The Restore information is kept in a hidden folder on the C: drive named System Volume Information. This is not generally accessible. Normally you can not view the information in this folder and the folder size is not given. I have a small utility installed that does allow seeing folder size. Turning on System Restore on the C: drive I created a restore point. Checking the size it displayed 65,000 KB. Creating another point the size jumped to 130,000 KB. I do believe that System Restore is causing the effect you are seeing.

    My Maxtor USB drive is displayed but I have always had it turned off. It does appear that you cannot turn off the C: drive without turning all drives off. I'll try leaving only the C: drive and my USB drive on and will create another restore point. Just ran it and my System Volume Information folder increased to 173,500 KB. Running it one more time the folder size increased to 217,000 KB. Hard to know what's being captured here, but it appears that I can include the USB drive in addition to the C: drive.

    When I added the USB drive it created 12,313 KB in the System Volume Information folder on the USB drive, Drive F: in my case. So yes it is working if selected. The USB drive is NTFS.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2006
  17. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Hi Long View,

    No doubt his external drive is FAT32 formatted. This has a 4GB maximum individual file size limitation, which means TI will automatically split a large image into 4GB chunks.

    Regards
     
  18. mfabien

    mfabien Registered Member

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    I don't see this incremental increase in slices as a problem, I just wonder what is causing this increase in the number of slices.

    With 24 GB of data, my first Full image archive included 4 slices... say, MyBackup1.tib, MyBackup2.tib, MyBackup3.tib and MyBackup3.tib. When I restored the first day I had the application, I selected MyBackup1.tib only and the ATI picked up all these files. I understand that from a storage standpoint an image file has a size limit, that's all.

    I hear you concerning the concept of deleting Restore files, disabling Restore and relying on ATI for restoring my HDD. And it makes sense. But I will try keeping 2% restore and disabling before the next archiving and see what happens. But I'm fully confident on the ATI restoration as I have done it as a test the first day.
     
  19. mfabien

    mfabien Registered Member

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    Exactly. Right on the button.
     
  20. mfabien

    mfabien Registered Member

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    Whoa!

    After reducing restore from 12% to 2% and deleting Internet Temporary files manually my internal HDD changed from 23.8 GB to 13.9 GB!

    Note: My wife does a lot of Internet surfing...
     
  21. Bruce Mahnke

    Bruce Mahnke Registered Member

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    Sounds like a success story.

    Bruce
     
  22. Long View

    Long View Registered Member

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    :oops: I need a holiday :D
     
  23. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    Virtually all of that reduction would be attributed to the System Restore allocation reduction. It likely removed all the old restore points. Anyway, you now know what was causing the growing backup size.
     
  24. Bruce Mahnke

    Bruce Mahnke Registered Member

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    As seekforever put it you should now know what caused your problem. System Restore does not restore your entire system. That's where True Image can help you. If however you install a small file such as a device driver that doesn't work out well, System Restore can take you back to the previous driver if you create a restore point before installing the 'new and improved one'. I've had this issue with a network driver from Microsoft. Alternately you could re-load a saved True Image backup file which in this example is somewhat overkill but will accomplish the same thing. What's important here is to keep your PC cleaned up on a periodic basis and backup your system in the best method that fits your useage and lifestyle.

    Another recommendation would be to run chkdsk at Start > Run > type in cmd and press OK. Then enter the expression "c: chkdsk /r" without the quotes, note the spaces however, on a periodic basis to check and repair drive faults should they occur. This will require a re-boot and will take some time to complete the five steps on a Windows XP system. Perhaps an hour. If you install an image it is always wise to run this after the image is re-installed.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2006
  25. mfabien

    mfabien Registered Member

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    Done chkdsk just before loading up Acronis True Image. My volume was determined to be clean.

    Thanks all for your precious contribution. Learned a lot!
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2006
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