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Crashplan restore – winners and losers

December 13, 2015 Leave a comment Go to comments

Losers – more problems with Crashplan restore

I’m having some more issues with restoring from a Crashplan backup.

I recently restored a VM that had become unstable from a local backup; the restore seemed to work fine, but then the VM complained of access problems to a file, or a file missing. After some troubleshooting, I decided just to restore from a different date.

However, now the restore isn’t working at all. I get a lot of “Unknown problem for …”

The interesting thing is, the network traffic is showing it IS downloading it all from the backup to my local machine; it just isn’t actually persisting any data to disk.

The app logs in C:\ProgramData\CrashPlan\log show a lot of warnings, one per file, with each containing:

. . . . BACKUP DATA IGNORED! Restore BackupHandler is null!! backupData=BackupData[BackupB

So – that’s something I have a case open with them.

Winners – Crashplan’s thoughtful design for file restore

In the meantime, I thought I’d try and find another backup I can restore from, and this is another example of where Crashplan shines.

I do occasional (monthly) backups of my backups – I basically do a simple file sync of everything on my NAS to some external Hard Drives, so that if something happens, I have a fallback copy. This external drive therefore includes all my NAS-based crashplan backups.

Since Crashplan supports attaching local archives, this means I was simply able to attach that USB drive directly to my laptop – not the NAS – browse to the Crashplan folder for my laptop’s backup – and attach it directly within the app. Again, the developers have got the little details right here; I need to identify which folder is the one for my laptop, and by selecting it but not attaching it, Crashplan gives me that information without having to fully load it.

Once attached, it has to sync all the block information, which means fully reading the data, taking time, but hopefully at the end of this, I’ll be able to restore the older backup directly from there.

It’s great that Crashplan supports alternate approaches like this. I have always run backups to a Computer over the network, as on the destinations list, but I can copy those files to a USB drive, attach it directly to my PC, and then restore from the Folder – it’s a different destination, but the file storage is exactly the same, so I can switch between those in order to access my data. A lesser product would have insisted that I re-copy the files back onto the NAS, and then access the data that way… but not Crashplan.

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