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Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use? (Read 11434 times)
zmdmw52
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Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Jul 21st, 2008 at 4:11am
 
Using a PC-DOS boot CD with
(updated NG 2003, ver 793)
, there is a message asking whether NG 2003 should mark the disk drives as this would make the process of rendering images easier for Ghost.
I opted not to & selected the 'Continue without marking drives' option, as wasn't sure what the marking by Ghost would imply for the system.

Any ideas on what this is? Or whether there are any adverse consequences of having the HDD's (1 IDE & 1 SATA, both detected by NG 2003) 'marked' by Ghost?

PS:
I could successfully image the IDE partition to the SATA Hard Disk, with not to having them 'marked'.
 

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Nigel Bree
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #1 - Jul 21st, 2008 at 4:50am
 
The marking is primarily for the Windows system; it encodes a basically random GUID on each of the disks to ensure that it can correctly match up the drive letters used in Windows (where the main backup wizard is) with those visible in the DOS code. We were (understandably, I hope) very very cautious with the matching code in Ghost 2002/2003 since they were consumer backup products with a Windows GUI.

The Ghost Enterprise management console for the same basic code line - v7.x - needed to do the same kind of drive matching and did it exactly the same way, but being a corporate product it didn't ask, it just went ahead and did it. For Ghost 8.x and later (and now in Ghost Solution Suite) we did a much more elaborate system which didn't need marking, but by then Symantec had purchased PowerQuest and put us under the ex-PowerQuest management, who canceled genuine Ghost completely and put their product out under our brandname. so there was never a consumer version that didn't ask.

[ Some versions of the corporate product included a utility for auditing manual Ghost usage which could be run in logon scripts and scanned machines for this particular fingerprint and wrote a report to a network share - we actually developed that specifically at the request of several large corporate customers who wanted to be able to meter their license use very accurately. ]

The message in the consumer version served a dual purpose; full disclosure, and also how we remind folks that a single copy of Ghost 2003 is licensed for one and only one computer, full stop, and that you need to buy the corporate version for imaging more than one machine. We wanted people cheating the license system and trying to do mass deployment using a single consumer license to be nagged quite a bit about that.
 
 
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Christer
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #2 - Jul 21st, 2008 at 11:09am
 
Almost totally off topic:

I reinstalled my system a few weeks ago and during the procedure, I created several Ghost (2003) Images. I lured myself into trying Nero 7 on my old BOAC (1GHz/512MB) but during the installation, DirectX had to be updated and I let it go ahead. It took "for ever" to complete and I realized that Nero 7 was too much for my BOAC. I restarted from the Ghost Boot Disks (floppies) to roll back the system and was prompted to mark one or more of the disks for usage with Ghost. All disks had been seen and marked by Ghost and I was quite startled. I have found no explanation as to why this happened but I lean towards the updating of DirectX.

Nigel,
do you have a clue?

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TheShadow
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #3 - Jul 21st, 2008 at 12:35pm
 
Either you trust Ghost, or you don't.  If you don't then you shouldn't be using it.  Use something else.

I've been using Ghost in one version or another since ~1997 and I trust it explicitly. (100%)  If it says it wants to mark a drive, I just let it.
Doing that has never served me wrong.

When I first met up with Ghost, oh so many years ago now, I thought for sure it was written my little Grey Guys from "Out There" somewhere. Roll Eyes
Ghost was just so "Out of this world" compared to the other software of the day.

I feel so honored to finally meet one of the authors.

This forum ROCKS!

The Shadow  Cool

PS:  I have found that the DOS boot disk made with Windows ME, is much more useful than a boot disk with PC-Dos on it.
When windows ME formats a floppy disk, it also installs CD drivers.  I've found that useful as well.

 
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Nigel Bree
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #4 - Jul 21st, 2008 at 5:39pm
 
Christer wrote on Jul 21st, 2008 at 11:09am:
do you have a clue?

Some theories, but honestly there's not enough information to go on to really tell which might hold water. The way Ghost picks the sector to contain the UUID might have made it choose differently (which I think is the most likely, given the way some BIOSes behave) or else the fingerprint sector could have been overwritten by something are generally it though.

In particular, the location of the Ghost fingerprint sector depends on what's already on the disk due to all the completely insane complications that arise from INT13->LARGE->LBA geometry type madness. You'd never see any problems with the Windows GUI going to the virtual partition, but a standalone DOS boot disk might conceivably decide differently where the fingerprint sector ought to be based on what the BIOS tells it and what's in the partition table.

Modern BIOSes and even some Windows device drivers do some really strange things with their fake INT13 geometries. As in, completely insane. See http://support.microsoft.com/?id=931760 - some machines seem to look at the partition table at some point and decide based on what they see to the partition end sectors in the MBR as defining the fake INT13 geometry information they should use (which on some machines can end up as persistent settings in NVRAM!!!!). Bad juju ensues, as the machine or device manufacturer's trying to be too "clever" in ways that defy common sense.

The disk matching used in Ghost 8.0 and above is different; we use a large bag of potential disk identifiers (volume labels, hardware serial numbers and the like) and marshal all that potentially identifying information down to the DOS program which tries to match them all in quite a complex decision procedure. It's hugely more complex for us, but in practice it's been more than reliable enough to let us ditch the UUIDs.

Unfortunately, of course, by then we were under ex-PowerQuest management and genuine Ghost was completely cancelled outright as of Ghost 8.2 (completely canceled, both consumer and corporate; the story of how the product is still alive despite that is, alas, probably not yet safe to tell) before we could release a consumer product using the different system that didn't need to do the marking.
 
 
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #5 - Jul 22nd, 2008 at 2:30am
 
Thanks Nigel,
I'll have to read that again to fully understand it.

Interesting, though, that Ghost chooses the sector to use for marking depending on what's already on the disk and that it can be overwritten. If I remember correctly, people on here have identified the sector to wipe if, for some reson, one would like to get rid of the marking. As I understand it, it's always the same sector or often enough the same to be perceived as "always".

... Huh ...Christer ... Shocked ...
 

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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #6 - Jul 22nd, 2008 at 3:47pm
 
NightOwl always mentioned LBA-62.
 
 
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Nigel Bree
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #7 - Jul 22nd, 2008 at 6:01pm
 
It's not fixed. It depends on the classic INT13 geometry presented by the BIOS and the content of the partition table (and as we are increasingly seeing, defective BIOSes tend to choose the classic INT13 geometry based on partition table content too). For LBA systems it tends to end up in that location; other systems, other places.
 
 
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #8 - Jul 23rd, 2008 at 3:45am
 
Nigel,
thanks for clarifying!

Christer
 

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If I hear - I forget, If I see - I remember, If I do - I understand
 
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #9 - Jul 30th, 2008 at 6:37pm
 
It there any way around this prompt?  I used Ghost 2003 to image a machine and told it not to put a signature on the drive.  Now I'm trying to create an automated restore thumb drive and it's completely automated except for that prompt.  I tried the -QUIET switch but it still prompts and the -BLIND switch causes an exception fault.  The command line I have in the Autoexec.bat is very simple and works great, except for that prompt.  Is there any hidden command line switches to tell it not to mark the drives?  My line in Autoexec.bat is thus:

GHOST.EXE -CLONE,Mode=LOAD,SRC=C:\Final.GHO,DST=2 -SURE

Thanks.  Any help would be appreciated.
 
 
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #10 - Jul 30th, 2008 at 6:45pm
 
BTW, I also have Ghost Enterprise 7.0, but it refuses to work with the image that was made using 2003, so that's a bust.  Does anybody know what the earliest Enterprise version is that will work with images made using 2003 consumer?  I'm at the point of reimaging the drive using 2003, then imaging it using Enterprise 7.0, and using Enterprise 7.0 in the batch.
 
 
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #11 - Jul 30th, 2008 at 6:52pm
 
BTW, I'm an admin and have licensed versions of most of the older Ghost versions just in case you were wondering...
 
 
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #12 - Jul 30th, 2008 at 7:12pm
 
PorkRollNJ wrote on Jul 30th, 2008 at 6:37pm:
It there any way around this prompt?

Absolutely none. It is not legal to use Ghost 2003 with more than one PC, and this prompt is not removable precisely to remind people of this fact. We made this work this way specifically to stop illegal automated use of Ghost 2003 by companies.

PorkRollNJ wrote on Jul 30th, 2008 at 6:45pm:
Does anybody know what the earliest Enterprise version is that will work with images made using 2003 consumer?

Norton Ghost 2002 was released in between 7.0 and 7.5; Ghost 2003 was released after 7.5, from similar code, and internally identifies the image file format as "7.6" as a result.

Ghost Enterprise 8.0 and above was released after Ghost 2003 from a code line that had been in parallel development with it and had more extensive design changes. However, since all versions are by back-compatible with image formats to Ghost 3.0, any version of corporate genuine Ghost from 8.0 onwards (including 8.2 or later when Ghost Enterprise 8.2 was rebranded as Ghost Solution Suite 1.0) will restore a Ghost 2003 image.

The current version of corporate Ghost is in Ghost Solution Suite 2.5.

One of the developers here uploaded the ManageFusion presentation on the new items in GSS2.5 over GSS2.0 which may give you a small sense of how the product has evolved in the 5 or so years since you last upgraded it.

 
 
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #13 - Aug 8th, 2008 at 3:29pm
 
Thanks for the reply.  I see I need a version of Ghost Enterprise 8 or higher to work with my consumer Ghost 2003 image.  What Ghost Enterprise versions, starting with version 8, are still based on DOS?  The reason I ask is that at work, we use Enterprise 7 on a USB thumb drive and it takes all of 20 seconds to boot the computer and start Ghosting.  I'm not too interested in a WindowsPE based solution that takes 10 minutes to boot off a CD/DVD if I can do what I need in 20 seconds.  (I bought a copy of Norton Save and Restore that comes with Ghost 8.2 for this one VIP incident I'm involved in, but that Ghost version refuses to run from DOS, only WinPE.)  At this point, I'm willing to update the Enterprise version at work since it will not only get me out of this predicament, but will allow us to write images to an NTFS volume, which has been a stumbling block in the past.
 
 
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Re: Norton Ghost 2003, PC-DOS, mark drives for use?
Reply #14 - Aug 8th, 2008 at 4:13pm
 
PorkRollNJ wrote on Aug 8th, 2008 at 3:29pm:
What Ghost Enterprise versions, starting with version 8, are still based on DOS? 

Ghost.exe for DOS still exists in GSS2.5 and we have no plans to remove it from the next release either either for standalone Ghost or for the managed environment.

We do have plenty of customers for whom boot time is critical (particularly computer manufacturers) and so the DOS-based Ghost won't be going away.

PorkRollNJ wrote on Aug 8th, 2008 at 3:29pm:
I'm not too interested in a WindowsPE based solution that takes 10 minutes to boot off a CD/DVD 

Windows PE 2.0 is nowhere near that slow. Windows PE 1.x was that slow, but 2.x boots much, much faster. The point of having WinPE (and making it the default in the management environment) is that it has great driver support out of the box, and for most people we'd rather give them something that works and save frustration that way.

Some customers, in fact, get enough performance benefit out of the better drivers and capabilities of Windows PE during clones that the imaging process overall completes faster in Windows PE 2.0 than in DOS. The larger the images, the more likely that is. Some styles of use don't work this way (e.g. manufacturing, where the images tend to be smaller)
 
 
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