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Change of target drive has confused Acronis

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Beginner
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My 1TB external drive (H:) is 90% full, so I connected a new 3TB external drive in its place as H: but come my scheduled daily backup -- which uses the Incremental scheme -- Acronis didn't recognize H: and failed.

It seems that Acronis keeps its record of where it is up to in the scheme on the target drive? I thought perhaps it kept an index of that in the Acronis folder itself.

Anyway, how do I force a do-it-now backup on the new H: drive?

(PS: the last file created on the 1TB drive was xxxx_full_b3_s1_v1.tib)

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Legend
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Jim, ATI tracks all backup task activity, including drives, file names, status etc in an internal database such that you cannot simply swap out a full target drive and replace it with another drive and expect it to continue as if nothing has changed.

Having said the above, what you should be able to do is to reselect the new drive as the destination for your existing backup tasks and then click on the 'Backup now' button to trigger the task to run and create a new full backup on the new drive.

You cannot continue an incremental backup across different drives, hence a new full backup has to be created on the new drive.  You will probably get various error pop-up messages about missing files that you will need to ignore or cancel out of too.

The alternative approach here would be to use the task 'Clone settings' option for this backup task which will create a duplicate task with the same name but prefixed by (1).  Reconfigure the new cloned task to pick up the new H: drive, then either run this keeping the (1).... name or else, delete the old task from the GUI (leaving the files on your old H: drive), which in turn will remove the information about it from the database, then rename to (1)... task to remove the (1) prefix, then run the task.

Beginner
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Steve, thank you for the reply.

So, Acronis keeps some sort of target hardware device ID in its database? I thought it would simply open whatever is connected as H:

From what you have said, it seems that I need to recreate the backup scheme because the target hardware has changed.

 

Beginner
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(Duplicate post)

Forum Hero
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Jim, best option is to clone the existing job (this creates a new job with all the same settings in the original) but you will need to select the source and destination again as Steve mentioned 

Yes, Acronis keeps a record of the actual disk that was selected. This is because, if your backup was an external USB drive with volume D: and you unplugged it and plugged in a flash drive that then picked up D:, you wouldnt want Acronis backing up to it and filling up the smaller flash drive with unintentional backups.

This behavior is by design to ensure only the disk originally selected as the destination target is used, and not some random drive that might get plugged in and also have the same drive letter.

Legend
Posts: 59
Comments: 16103

So, Acronis keeps some sort of target hardware device ID in its database? I thought it would simply open whatever is connected as H:

From what you have said, it seems that I need to recreate the backup scheme because the target hardware has changed.

Yes, ATI tracks drives by the unique drive identifier so that it can distinguish between different drives using the same drive letter.  You can try as my earlier reply just selecting the new drive as the target for the backup task.

Forum Star
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Steve, is it disk ID or partition ID - my recollection that for the source ATI 2019 uses the latter as Windows 10 major updates can change the disk ID. I have dim recollection that the same happens for target drive.

Ian

PS Hopefully not another seniors moment on my part . . .

Legend
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Ian, it is the partition ID in ATI 2019 and was the drive ID in earlier versions as far as I understand.

Forum Hero
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Partition Identifier is correct.  Disk ID's can and do change with Windows updates.

Beginner
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OK, following a "manual" full backup on the new 3TB drive, the scheduled incremental ran fine. I now have to work out the retention cycle (i.e. at what point to delete old backup sets to recover space).

PS: Where is the spelling checker function/icon on this forum application?

Legend
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Jim, given your old backups are on the 1TB drive, then I would suggest just storing that drive in a cupboard for a while then when you need another drive in a few months time, just reformat it and start with a clean drive (unless there is other data to be kept on the drive?).

Spell checker in the forum (for me using Firefox) is by holding the Ctrl key while right-clicking on the word shown with the squiggle line underneath!

Beginner
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Thanks for the tip re CTRL key. Have never come across that method before on any other forum site.

The 3TB drive will keep quite a few backup sets (Full + Incrementals) for my purposes, so I'll investigate the 'delete version chains after xx days capability' to manage space on that.

I'll re-purpose the 1TB drive.

 

Forum Hero
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Just be aware that version chains, means an entire chain (a full and all incremental's in that chain).  So yes, you could keep a version chain for quite some time, but when it's time to cleanup, it will need to create an entire new full FIRST (so plan for that space in advance) and then delete the entire existing chain (or at least the oldest chain in the backup scheme, depending on your settings).  

Personally, the cleanup works best when you plan for the # of backups you want to keep in a chain and the number of chains you want (or can) retain instead of by days.

The cleanup if older than, has too many variables and doesn't mean that after that many days it just cleans things up then.  It just means that after that many days that your version chain count is met (like keep 30 incremental's and you now have 30 incremental's, then the backup will be deleted in the # of days set after that).

Frequent Poster
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Warning: Long posting that adds little or nothing useful to this thread.  Read it if you are bored.

There is a way to switch target drives, but it doesn't do exactly do what was wanted, and I'm not sure I'd recommend it even if it did: "Move".  It will move the existing backups for a task to a new target.  You have to have simultaneous access to both the old and new target drives, and all the existing backup files - 900GB in the case in question - would be moved. 

I've never tried this before so I'm running a test.  I assume it would allow you to continue where you were in the backup chain but I won't know until my Move is done.  It seems to be very slow - much slower than the original backups.  (The original full backup - 356GB - took a bit under 1 hour; a following Incr - 114GB - took 18 minutes.  The move has been running for 45 minutes and ATI estimates it will take another 1 hour 35 minutes.)  I'll keep it running because I doen't know what will happen if I stop it.  (Hopefully no files will be deleted until the whole chain has been moved.)

I would certainly recommend going with the earlier suggestions: use a new (cloned) task and start a new backup chain on the new drive.

Update:
I had looked at the stats for the wrong backups.  I actually had 2 full and  5 incremental .tib files to move.  The time it took to move the files as about 2 1/2 hours - just about the same time to create the files.  And a new backup continues the previous chain rather than starting a new one.  So things look pretty good.

However, ...

The "Backup was moved" entry in the task's Activity tab was written when the move started ... long before the move was completed.  I suspect that that means the database was updated at the start of the move.  Any failure in the move process would have resulted in the database not reflecting the location of the .tib files.

Each old .tib file was deleted as it was moved.  Logical for a move, but if the long process had been interrupted both the source and destination folders would have had incomplete chains.  The destination folder's chain would have been complete in that ATI would have been able to use it, but it would not have contained the whole chain.

This has been an interesting and enlightening exercise, but I would not recommend it as a solution to original poster's problem.

Beginner
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Just be aware that version chains, means an entire chain (a full and all incrementals in that chain).

 Yes, thanks, that's my understanding of the scheme. I will use the store no more that X recent versions option.

Beginner
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Comments: 14

Thinking about this further:

ATI tracks all backup task activity, including drives, file names, status etc in an internal database

... if the said database is on the C: drive and that drive crashes, how does the Acronis Recovery function operate?

Scenario: computer loses C: drive, so a new Windows system needs to be built. I install Acronis on the newly built system and then wish to perform an 'intelligent' recovery based on the latest backup chain on my H: drive.

Does Acronis need its internal database for recovery?

(PS: I am still trialing Acronis, hence the basic question.)

Legend
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Does Acronis need its internal database for recovery?

No, the internal database is only used by the ATI GUI in Windows.  If you are doing a bare-metal type recovery to a new disk drive, then you will be using the Acronis Rescue Media and the only requirement this has, is that all the required files that form the backup version chain being recovered are present and correct.

Forum Hero
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Ditto to Steve. Rescue media works fine without the database 

The database is to manage and track backups in Windows so that settings, like automatic scheduling of backups knows when to backup, what to backup and where to backup to.

Other than the actual restore itself, rescue media is manual and you just pick the existing backup and tell it what and where to restore to. 

Frequent Poster
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However, as has been recently discussed, after a full restore the database may not accurately reflect the actual backups taken.  It is wise to create a new backup task and start a new chain of restore files after a recovery of your C: drive.

Beginner
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Comments: 14

OK, thanks for the replies.