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Old 19-05-2013, 23:03
jsmith99
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Windows 7 x64, Chrome

For a couple of years now I've been using Windows Backup to backup to an external disc drive, then swapped EDDs and produced another backup.

I wasn't too keen on Windows Backup because I couldn't see what files had been backup up.

I tried SyncToy, which worked well :

Run one, X files copied or created, swap EDDs :
Run two, zero files copied or created.

A google search revealed that incremental backups unset the archive bit, while differential backups don't (that was my understanding, anyway). So the first run backed up changes, etc,, and unset the archive bit. Obviously the second run found nothing had changed.

Does this mean that it's impossible to run two copies of a backup? My solution on the SyncToy backups, all of which were in subfolders of one higher level folder, was to copy the entire backup to a the second EDD, using a single copy/paste.

Having deleted the old folders on the second EDD first, of course.

I've now registered for the free 5GB storage with iDrive, which is working well. However, I'd still like a local copy.

So back to the original question - can I run two copies of a backup?
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Old 19-05-2013, 23:19
Loobster
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AFAIK you can use Synctoy to run to two different locations for the same backup set, it knows which is which.

Just plug both drives in, and create a backup folder 'pair' which includes the same source folder and obviously different backup folders, then run all jobs.

Only the new and changed files should be syncd for both jobs.
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Old 20-05-2013, 05:31
fletchem
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I use Duplicati to back up certain folders straight to Skydrive. As I have the Skydrive software installed, it then proceeds to duplicate the backup into my PC based Skydrive folder. If you did the same, you could sync this folder to somewhere else.
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Old 20-05-2013, 11:26
jsmith99
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AFAIK you can use Synctoy to run to two different locations for the same backup set, it knows which is which.

Just plug both drives in, and create a backup folder 'pair' which includes the same source folder and obviously different backup folders, then run all jobs.

Only the new and changed files should be syncd for both jobs.
It's true that, although you define folder pairs using the drive letter (in my case, F SyncToy can automatically change the specifications to a different drive letter (G.

However, although F: will have the correct incremental backup, G: will have no files copied over or created. Because, I assume, the F: run unsets all the archive bits.

I use Duplicati to back up certain folders straight to Skydrive. As I have the Skydrive software installed, it then proceeds to duplicate the backup into my PC based Skydrive folder. If you did the same, you could sync this folder to somewhere else.
I looked at Duplicati, both the main page and various user guides, but couldn't work out whether you have to copy amended and new files to a separate folder. You have to for Skydrive, which was why I didn't try it. If I have to put files into a new folder, I could just copy them to an EDD or USB stick.

However, it it creates the Skydrive folder for you, that could be useful.

I also got the impression that Duplicati works only at folder level, not individual files.
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Old 20-05-2013, 11:54
fletchem
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I looked at Duplicati, both the main page and various user guides, but couldn't work out whether you have to copy amended and new files to a separate folder. You have to for Skydrive, which was why I didn't try it. If I have to put files into a new folder, I could just copy them to an EDD or USB stick.

However, it it creates the Skydrive folder for you, that could be useful.

I also got the impression that Duplicati works only at folder level, not individual files.
Duplicati does ask you for a folder name when it first sets up, it then creates that folder and then allows you to test the connection.
Not sure re the amended/new, it also does only work at folder level. The only issue I had was the inability to deselect certain sub folders, I solved this by simply moving these folders to the root level.
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Old 20-05-2013, 15:12
jsmith99
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Working at folder level isn't particularly convenient for me. I have a few folders to which I add new files at varying rates : gas bills, phone bills, pdf files, open office or works files, photos.

Obviously, I'd want the folder marked for backup, but only of new or amended files.
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Old 20-05-2013, 16:28
plugs13amp
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If Annie were still here, she'd have recomeneded AllWay Sync.

As a test with AllwaySync, I've just created two jobs, with the same source folder (on C drive), but backing up to two different destinations, D drive on same laptop, and a network drive. All originals copied in both jobs, all new files copied in both jobs, all file content changes copied in both jobs.

Seems to do what you want, although you might need to set up a couple of jobs if you want to backup several different folders. As an alternative, which I've used on occasions, set it to backup the parent folder to your desired folders, then use the exclude option to exclude all the folders you don't want backed up. Bit long winded, but it works and you only have one job to run. Note that you can clone a job to create your second backup set then change its target location.

It shouldn't cause any problems to have two external drives with the same drive letter, but just to avoid any possibility of confusion, I would create a folder on each external drive, and name them differently eg "Backup X" and "Backup Y" and backup to those.

There is a monthly limit on the free version, but its quite large, although its not very expensive for the pro version.

Edit: since my jobs are all set I don't play with the menus much, but looking at the website I've noticed they've added an "Add Sync Folder" menu option (Job::Advanced), so you can just add all the folders you want to sync to a single job, so no need to do the exclude stuff.

Edit 2: well thats not what I was expecting, "Add Sync Folder" just adds a second (or more) destination folder so you can sync to two destinations at the same time.
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Old 20-05-2013, 16:39
max99
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I was just about to recommend Allway Sync. It'll do the multiple target folders and incremental backup as required by the OP.

Also interesting to see that the newer version includes support for various cloud storage accounts.
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Old 20-05-2013, 23:39
jsmith99
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If Annie were still here, she'd have recomeneded AllWay Sync.

...........
I was just about to recommend Allway Sync. It'll do the multiple target folders and incremental backup as required by the OP...............
Thanks, I'll have a look at Allway Sync tomorrow.
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Old 21-05-2013, 21:53
Loobster
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It's true that, although you define folder pairs using the drive letter (in my case, F SyncToy can automatically change the specifications to a different drive letter (G.

However, although F: will have the correct incremental backup, G: will have no files copied over or created. Because, I assume, the F: run unsets all the archive bits.
No, I don't think so, have you tried it?

That's why I said plug both drives in at once, to make sure that they don't both get the same drive letter if you plug them in one at a time.

As far as I know Synctoy keeps it's own catalog of what was backed up and to where, it doesn't go by the archive flag.
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Old 21-05-2013, 23:56
jsmith99
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Allway Sync
=========

I've downloaded, installed and run Allway Sync. I've set up a test job (using a few small folders, subfolders and files), as well as jobs for various groups of files (documents, photos, music etc.) All ran successfully to a memory stick.

I couldn't find out :

1. How to set a group of jobs off.

2. How to start off a series of jobs.



Running the test job a few times, with changes, I found that amendments and new files were dealt with on the first run, but ignored on another run immediately afterwards.

I run iDrive every night (since last week, anyway), and what I'm looking for is a method of keeping a second copy.

It seems to me that amended files can "catch up", since, even if a backup misses an amendment, a later incremental backup would include the earlier amendment.

It may be that amending or creating a file, and then two backup runs is too quick; it may be more effective to leave a gap of a few hours between each step.

However , a new file which will never me amended (photo, music track, PDF file, bill) can never catch up in this way.

It might be easier the way I used to do it - checking a folder at a time, and copying new or amended files to an EDD.
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Old 22-05-2013, 00:01
jsmith99
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No, I don't think so, have you tried it?

That's why I said plug both drives in at once, to make sure that they don't both get the same drive letter if you plug them in one at a time.

As far as I know Synctoy keeps it's own catalog of what was backed up and to where, it doesn't go by the archive flag.
Thanks for the reply : yes, I did try it.

Unlike memory sticks, the EDDs were assigned drive letters F: and G: at an early stage. They keep these even if I swap them around the ports.

Yes, I've noticed the file SyncToy puts in every folder it backs up!

Currently I'm trying Windows Backup, iDrive, SyncToy and Allway . I'm going to have to make my mind up soon.
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Old 22-05-2013, 10:00
plugs13amp
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Running the test job a few times, with changes, I found that amendments and new files were dealt with on the first run, but ignored on another run immediately afterwards.
Thats really odd, thats not my experience. unless you mean another run without changes to the same target location in which case there won't be anything to synchronise.

To start a batch of jobs. You can do this using the command line, see the help file Command Line Options.

Create a new shortcut, and in the target put the application with the arguments eg;

syncappw.exe -s "My Documents", "My Music", "My Pictures"

where "My Documents", "My Music", "My Pictures" are the names of the jobs you want to run, as on the job tabs

You'll need to put the full path to syncappw.exe, probably C:\Program Files\AllwaySync\Bin\syncappw.exe but check
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Old 23-05-2013, 01:32
jsmith99
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Thats really odd, thats not my experience. unless you mean another run without changes to the same target location in which case there won't be anything to synchronise..................
Yes, i meant a second run immediately after the first, but to a different EDD, so that I'd have two copies.

Thanks for the method of setting up multiple jobs, but it seems a little complex for what I want. For one thing, I wouldn't always want the same combination of jobs - 'Photos' or 'Music' I'd run only if I'd added any folders or files.

I can set up 'groups', but I can't find any method of starting a group off.
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Old 23-05-2013, 08:04
Daedroth
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Can't you just create Backup 1 to your local machine, then robocopy it to external drive A, and then robocopy again to external drive B?
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Old 23-05-2013, 08:35
plugs13amp
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Yes, i meant a second run immediately after the first, but to a different EDD, so that I'd have two copies.
Can't understand that because as you can see from my first post (#7) I tried that and it worked, albeit not with two external HDs but that shouldn't make any difference.

You did set up two jobs didn't you, one to each external disk, and not edit a single job to point to the second external after the first run. That definitely won't work. You should clone the first job and edit the clone to point to the second disk, then run that. You only have to make the clone once.

I've just updated to the latest version, groups was a new feature to me - long awaited. You start a group via the File menu File::Synchronize Group::My_Group or as before, you can set up a shortcut and use the command line with the command -sg "My_Group"
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Old 23-05-2013, 09:53
jsmith99
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Can't you just create Backup 1 to your local machine, then robocopy it to external drive A, and then robocopy again to external drive B?
I've no idea what 'robocopy' is, but that's essentially what I did using SyncToy. I ran Synctoy to an EDD on F:, using folders set up under a single folder as the targets:; I then deleted the last set of folders/files under "SyncToy" on EDD G:, and copied the entire backup with a single copy/paste of the top-level folder.

Can't understand that because as you can see from my first post (#7) I tried that and it worked, albeit not with two external HDs but that shouldn't make any difference.

You did set up two jobs didn't you, one to each external disk, and not edit a single job to point to the second external after the first run. That definitely won't work. You should clone the first job and edit the clone to point to the second disk, then run that. You only have to make the clone once.

I've just updated to the latest version, groups was a new feature to me - long awaited. You start a group via the File menu File::Synchronize Group::My_Group or as before, you can set up a shortcut and use the command line with the command -sg "My_Group"
When I tried it with SyncToy I simply ran the same definitions, since SyncToy adjusts itself if the drive letter changes. Testing Allway I just re-ran the same job. This was a test job with a folder, two sub-folders, and two files which I created, amended and deleted.

However, I can see why that method failed with Allway - if it was comparing the two files, rather than just looking at the archive bit on the source file.

I did find 'File | Synchronise Group ...." , but nothing happened when I selected the group I'd created.

I'll set up another test Allway and two jobs, though that wont be until tomorrow.

Thanks for all the help so far, though.
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Old 23-05-2013, 18:26
Jamie_Lynn
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thanks for all the information, i was in need of this.
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Old 24-05-2013, 16:31
jsmith99
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plugs13amp : you're perfectly correct. When I set up two test jobs to back up to two different test folders on a memory stick, then Allway carried out identical actions.

Even after a few more changes, running an idrive backup, then allway, the two test jobs worked correctly.

Now I just have to find out whether I need to create new jobs, since my tests are to an F: memory stick, and my actual backups will be to EDDs called F: and G:.

I've ticked "binding" in the definitions of the targets, so it depends what the software means by "characteristics". Actually, if I settle for one EDD backup, I think I could just untick "binding", and use the F: one.
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Old 24-05-2013, 18:54
plugs13amp
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Now that you've done all your testing, I'd scrap those test jobs and start from scratch. That way, you'll know everything is clean. Once everything is set up as you want, I'd also "Export" the profile, and put it somewhere that'll get backed up. That will keep a copy of all your jobs, which you can import if you ever need to re-install AllWay Sync.

Those "characteristics" should include the drive's id, so it should find the right drive whatever it's drive letter changes to if you tick binding. Have you tried adding a synchronisation folder to sync both drives at the same time. It might improve performance ?

You mentioned in a previous post about not always needing to sync a folder where you've not made any changes. One of my regular "jobs" is to backup my NAS box to an external usb disc, and the job scans the whole NAS. That currently looks at some 75,000 objects, files and folders, and it takes less than 10 minutes to do the analyze bit (the copy time obviously depends on what it finds it needs to copy), so I would suggest you set up a group which includes all the jobs for the folders you want to scan, and just do it regardless of what file changes you might remember making. It won't take very long, and at least you won't miss anything you've forgotten about. Backup has always meant going and making a cup of coffee (in my early days in IT it meant going home to bed for the night and hoping the tapes didn't jam and were long enough!)

Incidentally, Allway Sync also adds files (xml with a binary object, so you can't read it) in folders to the source and destination folders to keep track of all the file details just like SyncToy, its just that Allway Sync sets them as hidden so you don't normally see them, as curiously, it also does with it's log file.

Glad you go it working, at least you shouldn't be back here telling us all your files have gone.
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Old 25-05-2013, 11:25
jsmith99
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Plugs13amp - thanks for all the detail in your last post.

I've just run a small test, using my test folders and a memory stick. I added a second folder to the job spec, and it ran perfectly. Even when I deleted some files in one target folder and not in the other.

Later today I'll create new jobs, each with two target folders. Then finally I'll export the job descriptions and do a final run.

I notice that the 'File' menu also includes a "run all jobs" command. That'll be useful - as you say, there's probably not a great deal of time saved in omitting folders and then adding then later if something changes.

That'll get me all backed up before I leave early tomorrow morning for a few days in the north east.
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Old 25-05-2013, 23:46
jsmith99
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plugs13amp :

Right, I first of all created new job definitions to with F: as the target. These worked.

Then I added a second target, on G: to the first job. This worked, so I amended the other jobs.

After running all jobs, I used File | Analyse All. This took about 5 seconds, so you're right about leaving all files in the job description. Finally I ran File | Synchronise All.

At some stage (can't remember at which points ) I had errors.

1. Initially I clicked 'bound', but got an error message. So I left all the targets unbound.

2. I had an error message at the end of one run. Quite a long one, with a 'send' button at the end. Re-running it, there was no problem.

3. I tried to export the settings, but the file type (*xml) didn't show any value in the "file of type" field, so the "save" button didn't work.

Anyway, I'm happy with where I've reached at the moment - many thanks for all your help, I appreciate it.
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Old 26-05-2013, 11:29
plugs13amp
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Without details of the error message, I can't really say anything sensible, other than ask was it an Allway Sync error message or a Windows error message. Allway Sync can send emails on error, but only if you set it up to do so on the "Custom Actions" page in the profile. There's no detail in the help file but the custom actions page kind of implies an email gets sent automatically on error. What you saw sounds like a Windows error message to me, with the option to inform M$

Exporting the settings; I never noticed the lack of filetype, but you do have to give the file a sensible name other than the "*.xml" thats presented in the filename box when you try to save.
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Old 31-05-2013, 10:04
jsmith99
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I seem to remember the error report was in respect of the last job of a 'file | synchronise all' run, and appeared in the middle of the screen in place of the normal job run analysis. It was highly technical, and I can't remember now what it was about. I re-ran the 'synchronise all' without incident.

I've also just done a 'synchronise all' run this morning, after adding 56 photos. There were no incidents.

The 'export' also worked successfully this morning, despite the lack of 'filetype' drop down menu. As a test I changed the entire filename to "a.txt". This didn't produce a drop down menu either, but saved ok. So I did the export again, and this time it worked. I have a feeling that when I did it last time, I may have omitted to delete the '*' in '*.xml'.

Once again, thanks for your help.
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