Old 07-10-2010, 05:40 AM   #1
Mgoldman
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Default Dissappearing Backup files - HELP

Today, on "As the PC Turns..."

Can I sue Microsoft or IBM for pain and suffering?

Today's issue - I have 3 Western Digital external backup drives
which I use to archive my images. Two are My Books and one is
an Element. They are all redundant.

I'm using software called "Backup Wolf Pro".

The problem I am running into is every now and then when I check
a drive - a problem I have with seemingly all of them? is despite
having properly backed up all my images I will later notice that
ALL folders alphabetically higher then "P" are missing.

They back up fine. They show up fine. BUT... a month later I
note that folders "Roanoke 981107" from "Zoo Philadelphia 100704"
are missing.

What's going on? All back ups are incremental.

This just in - though missing, if I try to drag a folder from one drive
to the one missing that folder it says that file already exists yet I
can not see nor find it. I "overwrote" it to see what would happen and
it copied file by file, one by one for about 40 seconds but I can not find
those either. Going to MS-DOS Command does not show anything that
Windows does not and hidden files are marked to be visible.

What is a good back up program you can recommend?

I signed up for Carbonite and seems I have about 2 to 3 more months of
24/7 uploading to do.

/Mitch

Last edited by Mgoldman; 07-10-2010 at 06:11 AM.
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Old 07-10-2010, 11:50 AM   #2
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I once had a seagate drive go bad in which all my files became only 32kb in size instead of their original size. From that moment on, I have everything backed up twice and keep the mirror set at my parents house. Nuclear warfare or thermal pulse is the only way I'll loose all my files. The unfortunate side to all these drives is the expense of all of them but I'd rather spend the extra cash and know that my files are safe.

I dont know why your issue is happening. My best suggestion in Apple.
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Old 07-10-2010, 01:07 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mgoldman View Post
The problem I am running into is every now and then when I check a drive - a problem I have with seemingly all of them? is despite having properly backed up all my images I will later notice that
ALL folders alphabetically higher then "P" are missing.

They back up fine. They show up fine. BUT... a month later I
note that folders "Roanoke 981107" from "Zoo Philadelphia 100704"
are missing.

This just in - though missing, if I try to drag a folder from one drive
to the one missing that folder it says that file already exists yet I
can not see nor find it. I "overwrote" it to see what would happen and
it copied file by file, one by one for about 40 seconds but I can not find
those either. Going to MS-DOS Command does not show anything that
Windows does not and hidden files are marked to be visible.
Missing when viewed in your backup program, or missing when you view the external drives using 'My Computer?'

Plug the externals into another computer and look for the files using My Computer. It sounds like a flaw in your backup software.

Quote:
What is a good back up program you can recommend?
If you're looking for automatic backups, evaluate http://dropbox.com .
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Old 07-10-2010, 01:29 PM   #4
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Missing when viewed in your backup program, or missing when you view the external drives using 'My Computer?'
Missing when I look at the drives using 'My Computer'.

So it seems I have two problems - the back up software and Windows.

What's going on that I can not see or access certain folders but when I try to drag and drop folders from another drive in Explorer (or even backup) the folders can only be overwritten yet doing so leaves them invisible afterwards?

/Mitch
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Old 07-10-2010, 01:46 PM   #5
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Somehow the folders got marked as hidden? We had that happen on an external drive at work, never found out how it happened, we presumed user error but we don't know who or how.
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Old 07-10-2010, 02:24 PM   #6
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If they are there, they are hidden but I can not unhide them despite setting "view folder options: display hidden". I can drag other folders over but not the ones that are missing (since they are "there").

/Mitch
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Old 07-10-2010, 03:20 PM   #7
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So it seems I have two problems - the back up software and Windows.
I tend to agree with Janusz that something (probably your backup software) is marking those directories as hidden for some reason.

I suggest reformatting one of your external drives (assuming the three are duplicates) and manually backing up your computer, just in case. Next, I would install another backup program and back up to a second reformatted external drive, and see how that goes. If your directories don't disappear, get rid of your old backup software, reformat the third external drive, and do a backup. Once you're happy everything is back to normal, you can overwrite your manual backup.
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Old 07-10-2010, 03:21 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by lerro984 View Post

I dont know why your issue is happening. My best suggestion in Apple.
Mac. Time Machine. Problem solved.

In all seriousness it sounds like an issue with the software you are using. I'd suggest searching the internet for other people that have the same problem with it. Maybe they have a fix.
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Old 07-10-2010, 03:27 PM   #9
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I tend to agree with Janusz that something (probably your backup software) is marking those directories as hidden for some reason.

I suggest reformatting one of your external drives (assuming the three are duplicates) and manually backing up your computer, just in case. Next, I would install another backup program and back up to a second reformatted external drive, and see how that goes. If your directories don't disappear, get rid of your old backup software, reformat the third external drive, and do a backup. Once you're happy everything is back to normal, you can overwrite your manual backup.
Problem is over time and with all these sporadic errors unknown to me at the time, all 3 back ups have varying information. I'm not sure what's missing on each drive - one drive has folders from A-P, another has A-Z but no subdirectories and the other, who knows? I need to incrementally back up one to the other full circle so I can't erase. I could get a FOURTH drive....

The issue at hand now is unhiding the folders in WINDOWS. So forget about the back up software for now. I can go to "DOS" and change directory to a hidden folder and it shows. Now what? Seeing how show hidden folders is already checked.

/Mitch
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Old 07-10-2010, 03:43 PM   #10
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Problem is over time and with all these sporadic errors unknown to me at the time, all 3 back ups have varying information.
I suppose I should clarify one thing - the method I suggested assumes your C: drive has a complete copy of your files. If it does, then don't worry about what's on the external drives now - blow it away and make a fresh copy from C:.

Obviously, that won't work if you don't keep everything on your main computer.

As for DOS, try 'attrib -H D:\*' (replace D: if necessary, of course) - that should unhide all the subdirectories, and you should be able to see them in My Computer.
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Old 07-10-2010, 03:55 PM   #11
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I suppose I should clarify one thing - the method I suggested assumes your C: drive has a complete copy of your files.
It did until I made the 3 copies onto the external drives and verified. Then I started deleting the RAW files folder by folder to give Photoshop some needed breathing space.

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As for DOS, try 'attrib -H D:\*' (replace D: if necessary, of course) - that should unhide all the subdirectories, and you should be able to see them in My Computer.
Didn't work. Still can only see to "P".

Just went an attempted to edit my registry but "Showall" is set already as prescribed to a value of "1".

I guess this is like Final Destination - I haven't had a computer problem for over a month - one month in a row! And now it's coming to haunt me.

/Mitch
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Old 07-10-2010, 04:02 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by PLEzero View Post
Mac. Time Machine. Problem solved.
I'd suggest searching the internet for other people that have the same problem with it. Maybe they have a fix.
I am the originator of all PC computer problems - they are invented, discovered and cured here at my home. Since I chose to use a PC there has been no need for MAC problems to exist.

/Mitch
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Old 07-10-2010, 04:30 PM   #13
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It did until I made the 3 copies onto the external drives and verified. Then I started deleting the RAW files folder by folder to give Photoshop some needed breathing space.
[Jake Blues]

"Well then, I guess you're just up $#!+ Creek, then."

[/Jake Blues]


Try ATTRIB one more time.

ATTRIB -H D:\*.* /S /D

Report back.
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Old 07-10-2010, 04:51 PM   #14
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"Well then, I guess you're just up $#!+ Creek, then."
Is that near Sandpatch? There are no trains there either.

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Try ATTRIB one more time.
ATTRIB -H D:\*.* /S /D
Report back.
That yielded "Not resetting system files - J:\Photos\A throgh PRR Museum 070823" and then instead of resetting folders R through Z I got "data error ".

/Mitch
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Old 07-10-2010, 05:16 PM   #15
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That yielded "Not resetting system files - J:\Photos\A throgh PRR Museum 070823" and then instead of resetting folders R through Z I got "data error ".
OK, at least we now know why they're not showing up.

Did you run ATTRIB on all three drives? If you haven't, do so.

Have you tried opening one of the 'invisible' files in Photoshop?

CRC errors indicate corrupt data. It may just be one subdirectory that's preventing you seeing the rest, or it could be worse.

We may come to the conclusion that need to send one of the externals off for recovery. I use http://gillware.com
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Old 07-10-2010, 05:27 PM   #16
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A couple things to note which may help you --

1) I have used WD external drives for a few years now. About once every year or so I will retire one to my safe deposit box. I have too much info to back up totally to them anymore, so I will wipe the backup files off the drive first, and then use Windows to fill the drive up with files. I only use the backup program on the active drives that I am still using. In the end, I trust Windows more than any backup program.

2) I have had all files in a folder beyond a certain letter "vanish" when a corrupt file was introduced to that folder. While the other files were there, the computer was not seeing anything alphabetically beyond the one corrupt file. You may have a corrupt file or folder with that starts with "O."

3) I have had a WD drive fail to recognize a file name because it was too long (not too long for Windows). As I had included names of everyone in many JPeG files of family pics, this was a huge problem to deal with.
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Old 07-10-2010, 05:38 PM   #17
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A couple things to note which may help you --

2) I have had all files in a folder beyond a certain letter "vanish" when a corrupt file was introduced to that folder. While the other files were there, the computer was not seeing anything alphabetically beyond the one corrupt file. You may have a corrupt file or folder with that starts with "O."

3) I have had a WD drive fail to recognize a file name because it was too long (not too long for Windows). As I had included names of everyone in many JPeG files of family pics, this was a huge problem to deal with.
Interesting....

John - I did not reset the ATTRIB of the other working drives but was able to open a hidden file in Photoshop.

/Mitch
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Old 07-10-2010, 06:34 PM   #18
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3) I have had a WD drive fail to recognize a file name because it was too long (not too long for Windows). As I had included names of everyone in many JPeG files of family pics, this was a huge problem to deal with.
Some software can't deal with copying files where the entire string contains more than 256 characters. I've run into this issue a few times at work and have gotten yelled at by our IT staff for making their jobs more difficult.
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Old 07-10-2010, 07:14 PM   #19
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After my initial back ups all files were there - is it not normal for files and folders to simply disappear when using a PC?

As for now, I can go into MS-DOS command (good old days - it's all coming back to me), and I can go into hidden directories and even open files if loaded manually into Photoshop except it seems some folders are in fact corrupt while others (still invisible) are accessible.

I guess I held on to my WD Elements drive too long. It's been well over a week since I opened the box.

/Mitch
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Old 07-10-2010, 07:38 PM   #20
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Mitch,

I do think that there is something in the idea that perfectly fine files without any problem are being hidden by the fact that they come either alphabetically or numerically after a corrupt file.

That being said, the fact that this happened on all three drives, makes me think the corruption is on your C Drive.

I am not a computer guy... so you should maybe internet search any advice I give in order to make sure it's okay... but my gut instinct in your situation would be that I would run the Fix Disk utility (MS DOS) on my C Drive. That should hopefully find, and maybe even fix the corrupt files (which I would think would then make them appear revised to your backup program when you backed up again).

Another alternative, is that there was just a thread on Scans_Of_The_Day yesterday about a program called Spinrite, http://www.grc.com/intro.htm. I know NOTHING about this program, but folks on the Scans forum were saying it's a miracle worker on recovering and fixing files that are located on bad sections of a drive.

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Old 07-10-2010, 07:38 PM   #21
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Oh, one last thing... my experience with a corrupt file was that even though I dropped it into a folder where the other files were two years old and fine, the intro of that corrupt file made everything that came after it alphabetically vanish.
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Old 07-10-2010, 08:05 PM   #22
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Oh, one last thing... my experience with a corrupt file was that even though I dropped it into a folder where the other files were two years old and fine, the intro of that corrupt file made everything that came after it alphabetically vanish.
I searched the web for this problem and got no where - even a tech is lost with this issue. Yet - you had this seemingly unique problem? Do you want to start a club?

I just made a directory called Test and it will not show up upon refresh.
I made one called A Test and it shows fine.

I am not sure how to find the corrupt file that might be the issue. And in DOS Shell, I can not access my folders that for the most case are two or more words - can't find the sub for the space neither " "'s or ~1 seem to work. I would like to rename a few folders with a Z or 1 in front.

/Mitch
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Old 07-10-2010, 08:09 PM   #23
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Interesting....

I . . . was able to open a hidden file in Photoshop.
OK, then I agree with Charles. In DOS, whatever the next subdirectory after "PRR Museum 070823" is, rename that to ZZ:

REN j:\photos\whatever j:\photos\zz
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Old 07-10-2010, 08:14 PM   #24
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How do I rename PRR Museum 081102? In DOS Shell I can not find a substitute for the space. Running Windows XP. I tried PRR_Museum and even "PRR Museum" but they are invalid directories. Haven't tried with the REN but tried to open via CD PRR_Museum and CD PRRMus~1 and CD PRR Museum but all were invalid. Yet a one word folder works fine.

/Mitch
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Old 07-10-2010, 08:15 PM   #25
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How do I rename PRR Museum 081102? In DOS Shell I can not find a substitute for the space. Running Windows XP. I tried PRR_Museum and even "PRR Museum" but they are invalid directories. Haven't tried with the REN but tried to open via CD PRR_Museum and CD PRRMus~1 and CD PRR Museum but all were invalid. Yet a one word folder works fine.

/Mitch
REN "j:\photos\PRR Museum 081102" j:\photos\zz
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