Problems with Synctoy; need new backup software

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I'm hoping someone here can help me with my problem. I'm running Windows 7 Home Premium on a system with an I7 Chip and 16 GB of Ram. I've been using Microsoft's Synctoy 2.1 program to backup my photos and data files. Until now it has run fine and done all that I need. I simply want a program that will copy all of my files (in this case photographs) from my system hard drive to an external backup drive. It needs to be able to do incremental backups so that it simply adds new files to the backup as I create them on the system hard drive. Synctoy has been excellent at this. Easy to use and understand.

My problem is that Synctoy ran fine until recently. Now if I create a new folder-pair, syntoy will run and create the file copies, but once I close synctoy and restart it, the new-folder pairs are gone. Also, if I delete folder pairs previously created, synctoy will delete the pair, but the next time I start the program, the original deleted pairs are back. I can not create new folder-pairs nor can I delete those no longer required.

I have uninstalled and reinstalled synctoy 2.1 but it has not changed this behavior. How do I get synctoy to allow me to create or delete folder-pairs again?

And if no one here is familiar enough with synctoy to help - can you recommend a good back-up program. I don't need something complicated - I just want to be able to back up my photos to several different external drives (I keep two back-up copies of everything).

Thanks,

Fred
 

Growltiger

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I don't believe in any of the above products, unless you really have to sync in two directions. Many people don't need that. Those products have to use hidden files or a database to decide what to do. If anything gets out of step the result is a terrible mistake.

What you want is to make a backup copy, a replica, but you don't want to write all the existing files again each time, you want to add new files, update those that have changed, and delete any that have been deleted.

The answer used to be Karen's Replicator, but sadly Karen died. I searched for a new solution and eventually found it. It is called BART and it does the same job but runs 5 times faster! It is staggeringly fast. I can backup tens of thousands of files in a huge nest of folders, 20GB, in a couple of minutes. I use it extensively.

Here it is, and it is completely free:
http://www.zhornsoftware.co.uk/bart/
 
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I've used Araxis Merge for years - it lets me compare 3 different hard drives at one time and merge changes. Most importantly, I can compare files byte by byte so I can catch file corruptions before they cascade out to backup drives - that's the exact problem I had with SyncToy many years ago.

http://www.araxis.com/merge/index.html

Sean
I don't believe in any of the above products, unless you really have to sync in two directions. Many people don't need that. Those products have to use hidden files or a database to decide what to do. If anything gets out of step the result is a terrible mistake.

What you want is to make a backup copy, a replica, but you don't want to write all the existing files again each time, you want to add new files, update those that have changed, and delete any that have been deleted.

The answer used to be Karen's Replicator, but sadly Karen died. I searched for a new solution and eventually found it. It is called BART and it does the same job but runs 5 times faster! It is staggeringly fast. I can backup tens of thousands of files in a huge nest of folders, 20GB, in a couple of minutes. I use it extensively.

Here it is, and it is completely free:
http://www.zhornsoftware.co.uk/bart/


Thanks guys. I'll take a look at all of these, although on my initial look it seems that Araxis is much more program than I need. Syncback and Bart seem to be what I need, as what I want to do is what Rich has so aptly described.

Rich - one question...I already have a folder with complete backup of my photos on my two external drives. Any idea if when I run Bart the first time, will it compare the source and destination folders and add new files to it, or will it copy everything and I'll end up with two copies in the destination folder?
 

Growltiger

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Rich - one question...I already have a folder with complete backup of my photos on my two external drives. Any idea if when I run Bart the first time, will it compare the source and destination folders and add new files to it, or will it copy everything and I'll end up with two copies in the destination folder?
It will do exactly what you want. It won't copy any that it doesn't need to, even the first time.
 
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I don't believe in any of the above products, unless you really have to sync in two directions. Many people don't need that. Those products have to use hidden files or a database to decide what to do. If anything gets out of step the result is a terrible mistake.

What you want is to make a backup copy, a replica, but you don't want to write all the existing files again each time, you want to add new files, update those that have changed, and delete any that have been deleted.
I used to use Karen's but it is so slow. Syncback you can sync either way or both ways, your choice. It uses a database yes, which makes it very very fast. You can set it to do a complete scan as often as you wish if you are afraid of issues such as getting out of step, but if you leave your backup files alone that doesn't happen. I have mine set to rescan once a month. You second paragraph above is exactly what i use it to do.
 
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I thought I would give Bart a try as I am a user of Karen's Replicator.

I setup all my jobs exactly as they were setup in Karen's. Source/Destination.
When I kicked off the job, it did something I was not expecting.

It deleted every file in the destination. I immediately stopped the job before it went to other folders.

I am curious as to why it would do that? Does it have to re-make the files for use in Bart?
I would have thought it would have compared the source and destination and not overwrote them.

I did not have the Safe Mode box checked. I didn't think I would need to do that.

Don
 

Growltiger

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I thought I would give Bart a try as I am a user of Karen's Replicator.

I setup all my jobs exactly as they were setup in Karen's. Source/Destination.
When I kicked off the job, it did something I was not expecting.

It deleted every file in the destination. I immediately stopped the job before it went to other folders.

I am curious as to why it would do that? Does it have to re-make the files for use in Bart?
I would have thought it would have compared the source and destination and not overwrote them.

I did not have the Safe Mode box checked. I didn't think I would need to do that.

Don
It does not have to remake the files, provided thay are completely identical including their time stamps.
You must have set the source to a place that doesn't have the files.

Check you have it set correctly is why there is a Safe mode, so you can check before you use it for real.

I suggest you look very very carefully at what you typed in those boxes, and try safe mode. It does work.
 
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If you are okay writing a simple batch file, then I suggest taking a look at Robocopy it comes with Win7 (and I think a lot of others).

lots of options, but I set it up to do a 1 way copy and only add files. That way even if I delete from the main drive it does not mirror the deletion to the backup.

I also set it to only backup files that are newer and that way it can run though a lot of files and only do the incremental additions/changes.
 
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I thought I would give Bart a try as I am a user of Karen's Replicator.

I setup all my jobs exactly as they were setup in Karen's. Source/Destination.
When I kicked off the job, it did something I was not expecting.

It deleted every file in the destination. I immediately stopped the job before it went to other folders.

I am curious as to why it would do that? Does it have to re-make the files for use in Bart?
I would have thought it would have compared the source and destination and not overwrote them.

I did not have the Safe Mode box checked. I didn't think I would need to do that.

Don
It does not have to remake the files, provided thay are completely identical including their time stamps.
You must have set the source to a place that doesn't have the files.

Check you have it set correctly is why there is a Safe mode, so you can check before you use it for real.

I suggest you look very very carefully at what you typed in those boxes, and try safe mode. It does work.

Richard - I gave Bart a try, ran it first with safe mode checked. All seemed fine. Then I tried to run it without safe mode on and, like with Don, it began to delete files. Not all of them, but enough to worry me. After it ran, I manually compared my source to my destination.

Turns out all was good. I had moved files and reorganized some folders a while back. With Synctoy, I was not allowing deletions - only copying one way. Bart simply made the destination exactly mirror the source, which is what I wanted. The files Bart deleted from the destination were those that had been moved in the source folder. They were now in the proper location.

Thanks for your help.

Don, - I would suggest looking at the files deleted by Bart, and then looking in your source folder to see if they were previously moved. Like me, you may have moved them some time ago and Bart is putting things were they belong.
 
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I stopped the job just as it was adding the first file to the same destination it had just deleted all files from.

I had 2 jobs, each copying files from one folder to a common folder.
So.. Like this, as an example:

Job 1: Source: Pics1 to Dest: BackupPics
Job 2: Source: Pics2 to Dest: BackupPics

At the least, it should have kept the files that were in Pics1 when Job 1 started.

Maybe Karen's Replicator added something to the files so they were not identical. I checked the source and dest paths and they were correct.

It does not have to remake the files, provided thay are completely identical including their time stamps.
You must have set the source to a place that doesn't have the files.

Check you have it set correctly is why there is a Safe mode, so you can check before you use it for real.

I suggest you look very very carefully at what you typed in those boxes, and try safe mode. It does work.
 
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Larry, does Puresync recognise a USB drive when it's plugged in, no matter what drive letter is allocated to it? (Windows often allocates different drive letter when it's plugged in)
Yes, it has always recognized mine.
 

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