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USB naming backups

Posted on 2013-10-28
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Last Modified: 2013-10-31
hi Experts,

One of our clients (not a big one probably about 50 users) has a backup Server which ran out of space, so he decided to buy USB with 3.9 TB size and plugged into backup Server ( I know it is not ideal, but that's his choice). We setup backups of 5 servers to that USB device.
He plugs in another USB to backup server do daily backups to take it off site.
We run scripts to automatically delete old backups of the USB disk that is supposed to be taken offsite.
We installed USBDLM software to assign only specific driver letters to USB device.
Yesterday Server restarted in middle of the day and it assigned Drive letter that is supposed to be for offsite USB to USB that we use for backups and vise-versa. Our script deleted all the backups.
Now literally users doesn't have any backups.
Can you please advise what is the best solution for this issue?
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Question by:ukitsme
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:_
ID: 39607718
I would give Recuva a try:
http://www.piriform.com/recuva

I have had pretty good luck with it.


Or try:
PhotoRec
http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/PhotoRec

I have not used this one, but it gets good comments from others around here.


There are others around, but these are both free.

Here are additional reviews of them, plus 4 others:
http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9224577/6_data_recovery_tools_for_SD_cards_USB_drives_and_more
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Expert Comment

by:Skyler Kincaid
ID: 39607760
This is why something like AppAssure or Datto is a much better idea because you don't run into silly issues like this and they also provide the ability for replication offsite.

Does he only have 5 servers? You could look at a cheaper solution like BackupAssist but you still might run into the drive letter errors.
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Expert Comment

by:dbrunton
ID: 39607765
Try GetDataBack http://www.runtime.org/data-recovery-software.htm

Free to try.  If it sees your files pay for the full functionality.  Industrial type software.  Note you'll want the NTFS version.

PhotoRec is NOT the util to try in these circumstances.  Sorry coral.  PhotoRec is the last util to try when everything else doesn't work.  It is excellent but it isn't an easy product to use.
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Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 39608035
My second vote for GetDataBack.
Another option would be one of these: http://lifehacker.com/5237503/five-best-free-data-recovery-tools
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Expert Comment

by:usieber
ID: 39608142
Yes, use GetDataBack or just create new backups.

And fix the USBDLM configuration before. Use the included ListUsbDrives or UsbDriveInfo tool to check if the right INI section applies to the drive you think it does.
If you have used the volume label as criteria then maybe someone has changed it. The most reliable criteria is the drive's device ID because it cannot be changed and never fails to be read.
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by:_
ID: 39608876
>> It is excellent but it isn't an easy product to use.

That's why I posted the Review link.    ; )
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Author Comment

by:ukitsme
ID: 39610637
hi xKincaidx,

Client will not change backup solution. We have about 70 clients and we supply Acronis and Shadow protect. I cant train our guys on new backup solution again. It will take ages.

I already recovered deleted backups, but my issue is more based on drive letter change with 2 usb's.  
Is there a script or software that assigns a drive letter based on USB type/Size/ type/ content in folder?
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Expert Comment

by:Skyler Kincaid
ID: 39610647
I know we have the same issue for our cheaper clients that use BackupAssist and I don't know of anyway to fix it. If the wrong drive is plugged it doesn't delete everything though :) I wonder if you can run some kind of time check on the created date of the files in your script to make sure it is the right drive?
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Accepted Solution

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dbrunton earned 500 total points
ID: 39610787
Drop a dummy file into your USB backup drive with a name like CHECK.

In your script have a line something like

if exist <usbdrive>:\CHECK do the backup

or

if not exist <usbdrive>:\CHECK abort backup and give warning message
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Author Comment

by:ukitsme
ID: 39612984
hi dbrunton,

Good idea but I am stuck with the script.

I created a folder XXX in usb and said if folder XXX found run a script to change to drive letter G. else run del to delete all the files.

But the problem I am  having is powershell script to change drive letter from Q to G
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Expert Comment

by:dbrunton
ID: 39613048
See if the subst command works eg

subst G:  Q:\

Run script

subst G: /d   <---   this to delete the substitution and put it back to how it was.
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Author Comment

by:ukitsme
ID: 39615368
no I can create it with out a problem.

Example if drive letter Q I can change it using the command subst F: Q:\
Thats creating a duplicate driver with letter F
if I  try to delete Q drive it doesn't work command -- subst Q: /d. I am getting error message saying Invalid parameter -- Q:
Subst f: /d works fine though
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by:dbrunton
ID: 39615401
>>  That's creating a duplicate drive with letter F

Yes.

>>  if I  try to delete Q drive it doesn't work command -- subst Q: /d. I am getting error message saying Invalid parameter -- Q:

Correct.  Q drive can't be deleted.  It stays there.

>>  Subst f: /d works fine though

Yes.  You are now removing the substituted drive.

This is only a fix for allowing the backups to occur if the drive mapping goes wrong and assigns Q: to F:  Doesn't solve the problem of Q: being wrongly assigned.
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Author Comment

by:ukitsme
ID: 39615654
ok I found a fix. We installed USBDLM software and you can assign Drive letter based on Size of the Harddisk

[DriveLetters1]
MinDriveSize=3GB
Letter1=F

;all other USB drives at Q:
[DriveLetters2]
Letter1=Q

I tested this is and it worked. Thank you anyways for  the help
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Author Closing Comment

by:ukitsme
ID: 39615655
Thanks for your help dbrunton:
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