Welcome, Guest. Please Login
 
  HomeHelpSearchLogin FAQ Radified Ghost.Classic Ghost.New Bootable CD Blog  
 
Page Index Toggle Pages: 1
Send Topic Print
Do you test restore? (Read 12810 times)
Brian
Demigod
******
Offline



Posts: 6336
NSW, Australia


Back to top
Do you test restore?
Jul 2nd, 2007 at 11:08pm
 
I was surprised to see several of the senior posters in the Acronis True Image forum advocating a test restore on every backup image. On a spare HD. This doesn't suggest they have full confidence in their software.

Do any of the Ghost users (any version) follow this practice?
 
 
IP Logged
 

John.
Übermensch
*****
Offline



Posts: 2072


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #1 - Jul 2nd, 2007 at 11:23pm
 
Brian wrote on Jul 2nd, 2007 at 11:08pm:
I was surprised to see several of the senior posters in the Acronis True Image forum advocating a test restore on every backup image. On a spare HD. This doesn't suggest they have full confidence in their software.
Do any of the Ghost users (any version) follow this practice?

Brian, I think that's because there are numerous posts on the TI forum that even though a backup-image has been verified, it is reported to be corrupt when you try to restore it.  Search their threads for the keyword "corrupt" and see if you agree with my suspicion.

I always check the "verify" option when creating Ghost backups.  I have restored files and folders on different pc's, different Ghost versions, and never had a verified image fail.

I've restored partitions and replaced hard drives with new ones, then restored with Ghost (various versions on various pc's).  I've never had a verified one fail.

I had one case where backup images were written directly to DVD's (no external usb2 drive available), and then the hard drive failed.  I installed a new blank hard drive, booted from the Ghost 9 recovery cd, pointed to the dvd drive, and restored the system.  It required a number of dvd swaps, but worked just fine.

I've had to manually fix up the boot.ini parameters, and suffered through Ghost issues recognizing usb2 devices; also have had to use F6 to add SATA drivers.  

But (knock on wood...) never had a corrupted restore.

So, to answer your question, as a matter of normal practice, I don't personally feel it is necessary to "test restore" after each and every backup operation.  After installing Ghost xx, I do feel though it is necessary to test booting from the Ghost Recovery CD, and verify you can restore a file or folder from your backup.

It will be interesting to hear other's experiences and opinions on this topic.
 

Ghost4me  Ghost 9, 10, 12, 14, 15.  Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7
 
IP Logged
 
NightOwl
Radministrator
*****
Offline


"I tought I saw a puddy
tat..."

Posts: 5816
Olympia, WA--Puget Sound--USA


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #2 - Jul 3rd, 2007 at 1:32am
 
Brian

I always run an *Integrity* check, but I do not run a test restore.  But, I do run test restores at first on every system to confirm that restores work correctly--but, once I'm convinced everything is working okay, then just the *Integrity* checks from then on.

I have run many restores when doing testing, and I can not remember a single Ghost restore ever failing!

Now, I have successfully set up a restore with Ghost that was the wrong setup and got the wrong results--but, that was my *bad*, not Ghost's  Wink !
 

____________________________________________________________________________________________

No question is stupid ... but, possibly the answers are Wink !
 
IP Logged
 
John.
Übermensch
*****
Offline



Posts: 2072


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #3 - Jul 3rd, 2007 at 7:54pm
 
Brian,

I searched the TI forum for "corrupt" and got 11 pages (x 25 per page), which equals 275 posts with the word "corrupt" in it.  Not good.

From what I have read in the TI forums over last months, TI uses memory for caching of writes during hot-imaging.  There seems to be a consensus that marginal or flakey memory cards or improper memory timing settings in the bios are contributors to the number of verified images that are really corrupt.

What's your theory?
 

Ghost4me  Ghost 9, 10, 12, 14, 15.  Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7
 
IP Logged
 
Rad
Radministrator
*****
Offline


Sufferin' succotash

Posts: 4090
Newport Beach, California


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #4 - Jul 4th, 2007 at 12:16am
 
Like NightOwl, I do a test-restore early on when I first set up a new system .. before installing many prgms. This way, if something goes wrong, it's not very difficult to re-configure the system from scratch.  

The test-restore verifies most hardware & software is working properly. Of course, this doesn't necessarily ensure *every* restore will work,

but I too have never had a problem restoring an image (have only restored with Ghost 2003 & prior) .. knock on silicon.

Bet I've restored a few dozen images in my day .. several in the same day, once or twice .. trying to determine what was causing a particular problem.

With my desktop system, I kept a spare drive on hand, and would periodically do a test-restore to a *new* hard drive .. every 6-12 months.  

With my laptop, it's not as easy to swap out hard drives, so I haven't done that with it.

The common theme I keep hearing, tho .. is Ghost's image intergrity .. reliability. And let's be honest .. that's what it's all about.

Good thread. Good question.

In the new Ghost guide (which I've been working on):

http://nortonghost.radified.com/

.. I'm gonna dedicate a whole page to discussing (concept of) the test-restore .. and will link to this thread.
 
WWW  
IP Logged
 
Brian
Demigod
******
Offline



Posts: 6336
NSW, Australia


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #5 - Jul 4th, 2007 at 2:26am
 
I create an image with Ghost every day because it can be done automatically with zero input from me. I'm not interested in test restoring every image. That takes time and if you have confidence in your software it's not necessary.

With the exception of a dying computer running Drive Image 2002, years ago, I've always been successful with image restores, with a variety of programs including Acronis True Image. As others here have indicated I also do a test restore, once, after installing imaging software on a new computer. This is done from the Recovery CD. For those without a spare partition or extra HD I'd agree with Ghost4me's approach...

Quote:
After installing Ghost xx, I do feel though it is necessary to test booting from the Ghost Recovery CD, and verify you can restore a file or folder from your backup.

With very rare exceptions mentioned in this forum, a verified ghost image will restore. Even so, it's sensible to keep a few backup images. Just in case.
 
 
IP Logged
 

John.
Übermensch
*****
Offline



Posts: 2072


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #6 - Jul 6th, 2007 at 8:39am
 
Brian wrote on Jul 4th, 2007 at 2:26am:
With very rare exceptions mentioned in this forum, a verified ghost image will restore. Even so, it's sensible to keep a few backup images. Just in case.


Brian, What's your opinion of all the TI discussions there re corrupt images?  Do you think it's related?
 

Ghost4me  Ghost 9, 10, 12, 14, 15.  Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7
 
IP Logged
 
Pleonasm
Übermensch
*****
Offline



Posts: 1619


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #7 - Jul 6th, 2007 at 10:44am
 
Why does Acronis TI have problems with corrupt images?  Well, it is only speculation on my part, but one contributing factor could be lack of resources at the company for software development and quality assurance & testing.  Acronis does not appear to be a company of significant size (do your own homework here), and building, maintaining and supporting a major application requires resources.

While it is true that there are many examples of small software companies performing well, the reality is that a continuous flow of capital in such an endeavor is often necessary - especially for "mission critical" tools such as image backup.
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
IP Logged
 
Brian
Demigod
******
Offline



Posts: 6336
NSW, Australia


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #8 - Jul 6th, 2007 at 4:06pm
 
Ghost4me,

The consensus in the TI group is that TI is hardware dependent and sensitive to any RAM anomalies. I use TI for tests and it has always restored images successfully. It concerns me when experienced TI users assert that an image can't be trusted unless it has been successfully restored. Apparently an image that has been verified isn't enough to mean that it will restore properly.

For the majority of users this is unacceptable. The majority of users won't be test restoring every image so their backup may be worthless.
 
 
IP Logged
 
Pleonasm
Übermensch
*****
Offline



Posts: 1619


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #9 - Jul 6th, 2007 at 4:39pm
 
Brian, the situation you describe is quite troublesome.  I wouldn’t mind if Acronis TI failed during image creation with an error message due to a hardware incompatibility, because the user could take action to correct the problem at that time.  However, when the image creation (and verification) process appears to work properly - but isn’t - that’s a very serious case and an outcome that can’t be easily detected, probably until it is too late to implement corrective action.

Is this problem new to version 10 of True Image?
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
IP Logged
 
Brian
Demigod
******
Offline



Posts: 6336
NSW, Australia


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #10 - Jul 6th, 2007 at 9:25pm
 
Pleonasm wrote on Jul 6th, 2007 at 4:39pm:
Is this problem new to version 10 of True Image?

No, I understand previous versions did it as well. Acronis release a new build every month or two. People complain that some bugs are fixed and others are introduced. Acronis lost quite a few of the experienced forum members when they released ver 10 and ceased fixing ver 9 bugs. Acronis was given an ultimatum. Fix ver 9 or we leave. There were no free upgrades to ver 10.

 
 
IP Logged
 

John.
Übermensch
*****
Offline



Posts: 2072


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #11 - Jul 6th, 2007 at 9:49pm
 
Brian wrote on Jul 6th, 2007 at 9:25pm:
Pleonasm wrote on Jul 6th, 2007 at 4:39pm:
Is this problem new to version 10 of True Image?

No, I understand previous versions did it as well.


I remember reading all the "corrupt" issues starting with TI 9.0 which is the first version I bought and have used.  I've never had the corrupt-on-restore problem with TI9 or TI10, but I haven't used TI9 or TI10 on that many different pc's.  It always worked for me, but I've always been reluctant to really trust it.

I've followed the TI forum for about a year or two.  Very active, with some experienced posters.  At least Acronis monitors it as well and (sometimes) responds, which is more than I can say for Symantec.  However I agree with you, Brian, there are frustrated users there too.

Bottom line:  Don't overclock your memory/PC if you're using TI.

 

Ghost4me  Ghost 9, 10, 12, 14, 15.  Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7
 
IP Logged
 
NightOwl
Radministrator
*****
Offline


"I tought I saw a puddy
tat..."

Posts: 5816
Olympia, WA--Puget Sound--USA


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #12 - Jul 8th, 2007 at 10:39am
 
Brian

So, from what I gather from this discussion--even if your system has worked fine in the past with TI image restores, you can not be sure a future verified image will in fact successfully restore--it may be corrupt regardless of previous successes--correct?!!!!

Ouch!!!  Hard to put your trust in something like that!!!
 

____________________________________________________________________________________________

No question is stupid ... but, possibly the answers are Wink !
 
IP Logged
 
Brian
Demigod
******
Offline



Posts: 6336
NSW, Australia


Back to top
Re: Do you test restore?
Reply #13 - Jul 8th, 2007 at 3:49pm
 
NightOwl,

Acronis TI has many loyal experienced users who don't want to change to another backup application. They accept that TI verification is flawed and many don't use it at all. Test restoring is used in place of verification. I asked the question whether a successful test restore would always be followed by a successful restore of the same image at a later date. No-one seemed concerned but it would take a lot of work to test this scenario.
 
 
IP Logged
 
Page Index Toggle Pages: 1
Send Topic Print