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Kudos0

Previously deleted, moved, & renamed files being inproperly restored

I had to restore all my files after taking my PC back to factory settings.  However, in the restore process I also restored hundreds of previously deleted, renamed, or moved files.  Now I have a real mess trying to figure out which are the most current files and which need to be deleted.  How could I have prevented this mess from occurring in either the restore process settings and/or how the backup set is kept current and aligned with my file directory on the PC?

Replies

Kudos0

Re: Previously deleted, moved, & renamed files being inproperly restored

The only way I can see is to delete the files every so often from the backup & run the backup again from scratch. The incremental backups don't remove files/folders which have been deleted.

Virginia/Twilight Princess. Windows 10 Pro 64bit, iPhone X, iPad Pro 9.7".
Kudos0

Re: Previously deleted, moved, & renamed files being inproperly restored

I thought of that, but this seems to be a poor way to design a file backup system.  

Kudos0

Re: Previously deleted, moved, & renamed files being inproperly restored

How would a backup program know if you deleted or renamed a file on purpose?

Kudos0

Re: Previously deleted, moved, & renamed files being inproperly restored

Backup software does not need to know how or why the files were moved, renamed, or deleted.  All that is needed is a comparison between what is currently on the PC and what has already been backedup.  If the two sets do not match, make them match by either uploading the file to the backup set or deleting what is on the backup and no longer on the PC.  While version control would be nice, the current approach to version control by only retaining renamed or moved files is a pretty poor way to accomplish that.

Accepted Solution
Kudos1 Stats

Re: Previously deleted, moved, & renamed files being inproperly restored

I guess I didn't explain myself.

What you describe is known as a "mirror" and some "backup" programs actually work that way.  Just as you describe, the destination is made to match the source.  If files are present in the backup but no longer on the source, those files are deleted so that the source and destination always match.  But that's not really "backing up" anything.

For example, say you have an extremely important folder full of files you need.   That folder gets deleted by mistake and then the next time the mirrored "backup" runs it sees that the folder is no longer on the source so it deletes it from the destination as well.

Now you just lost your important folder and have no way of getting it back.

That's why I said "How would a backup program know if you deleted or renamed a file on purpose?"

People would be coming here to complain about loosing important files because they were only backed up until the next time the program ran and that is not a useful backup.

I'm not saying there is no issue, I can see both sides of the problem but any attempt of "synchronizing" the source and destination would have to be user initiated and not done by the program because the program is incapable of "knowing" what was done on purpose and what was done by mistake.

Since the program does not provide an option to "sync the backup", the user initiated way to do so is either deleting the backup set and starting over or creating a new backup job with the same files and folders and keeping the old set for a while to make sure you don't need anything from it. (versioning the whole set).

As you become more aware of your backup needs and what exactly you want, you may want to consider a more robust backup program.  Personally I always use image based backups and only use file and folder backups for redundancy of important files or on systems where space is limited to backup files that may have changed in between full images.

Dave

Kudos0

Re: Previously deleted, moved, & renamed files being inproperly restored

DaveH,

Understand the difference now.  At the same time, I would think it easy to have a flag to indicate a "current" file on the PC so you could either restore a single file/folder or restore everything back as a mirror using the "current flag."

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