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Why EXACTLY do backups get status "Marked for deletion. No operations can be done.."?

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Hi there.

I've been usin Acronis BU 11.5 for a long time but I've never quite understood exactly what does it mean when in my G-F-S backup scheme Vault there very often out of the blue emerges those black markings on the Daily backup archives stating that "This backup is marked for deletion. No operation can be performed on backup"? What's the reason for the marked status?

I don't now remember that happening to any Weekly (differential) backups but am not sure.

I remember having those markings/locks active many times on Daily/Incremental backups and not having Weekly nor Monthly backup taken after them, so does it mean that my whole catalog is ruined since the latest marked backup?

I recently had to restore my whole PC as DISK restore but it failed every time, but I managed to restore all my files using VOLUME restore option. My guess was that it was due to having a few Incremental backups marked for deletion. I can't remember if there were any Weekly backups taken after those "locked/marked" Daily backups., but anyway the DISK restoring failed.

So does a "marked for deletion" backup mean it's a corrupted backup? The weird thing is that some of the subsequent daily backups after the marked ones are NOT marked. Since the marked backups cannot be restored files from, then it logically appears to me that they indeed are corrupted. Or what?

And if the marked backups can't be restored files/volumes/disks from, then it shouldn't (?) be possible to restore also from the subsequent Daily backups? Or what, again?

And why doesn't Acronis just delete them? Even if I just took Full BU because I again have marked older Incremental backups, Acronis still doesn't remove them. What is it keeping them for? So should I always take a full backup after marked backups appearing and delete all the old ones or what measures should I take?

Thank You in advance!


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Posts: 178
Comments: 5940

Hello Tommi,

Thank you for your posting! This message indicates backups which have dependencies and thus cannot be removed (for example incremental backups). The outdated backup will be kept until all backups that depend on it also become outdated. Then, all the chain will be deleted at once during the regular cleanup. Here you will find additional information. If you want incremental backups to be removed quicker you should consider creating full backups more often or using consolidation.

Thank you,

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This is simply untrue. I often see incremental and/or differential backups marked for deletion that have one or more FULL backups that post-dated them. How can the differential backups still be needed when there are TWO FULL backups that came later?

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Forum Moderator
Posts: 178
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What are the settings in the related cleanup task? Could you attach a screenshot showing the retention rules for this particular backup chain. 

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Comments: 3

I believe Roland Horne is correct, and Ekaterina's statements don't convey the (whole) truth.

Take Towers of Hanoi:

    Backup 1 is full.

    Backup 2 is level 1, incremental

    Backup 3 is level 2, differential

    Backup 4 is level 1, incremental

    Backup 5 is level 3, differential

    Backup 6 is level 1, incremental

    Backup 7 is level 2, differential

    Backup 8 is level 1, incremental

    Backup 9 is level 4, differential

    Backup 10 is level 1, incremental

    Backup 11 is level 2, differential

(It would continue like this to the specified level of the scheme.)

At this point, Backup #11 depends on #9, and #9 depends on #1(full).  Everything else could be deleted.  And Acronis Backup 11.5 correctly deletes all the (even numbered) incremental backups.  (It might keep around a couple most recent ones, like #10, due to retention policy.)  But all the unnecessary differential backups -- #3, #5, #7 -- are "marked for deletion" and fill up disk space when they should be deleted.

Sure, #7 depends on #5 (or not--differential may be relative to the full #1), and #5 depends on #1.  But #1 does not depend on any of them, and nothing depends on #7. says, "Acronis Development Team is working on redesigning the behavior."  That sounds like a euphemism for "it's a bug".  Maybe they got the dependence arrow backward.  Or incremental vs. differential mixed up.