Select and backup individual files - How to?


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Roger
Roger
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Hi,

I just downloaded the trial of Macrium Reflect and have activated the File and Folder backup feature. How do i select just individual files when creating a new File and Folders backup?

Let´s say that i have five HDD´s and want to backup one (1) single file per HDD i see no option to select just file/files, i see only the option to select folder/s. I use Acronis True Image today and can easily select those five files from each one of the five HDD´s. It seems that i am missing something obvious in Macrium Reflect, so please guide me in the right direction. Smile
jphughan
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Unfortunately that isn’t possible, at least to my knowledge. I believe the only way to define files for backup is by extension matching as shown in the exclude files field example. The only way I can think to achieve individual file selection without reorganizing your data (and assuming this file resides on an NTFS file system) would be to create a new folder and then create a hard link to the file of interest so that it appears inside that folder in addition to its normal location, then have Reflect back up that folder. This does NOT cause a copy of the file to be made, so it doesn’t take up any extra space on your drive, and it is not a distinct entity. But it’s more functional than an actual shortcut, because a hard link allows the same file to be accessed from multiple paths, and the file doesn’t actually get deleted until you delete all links to it.
Edited 4 January 2020 3:19 PM by jphughan
Roger
Roger
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jphughan - 4 January 2020 3:14 PM
Unfortunately that isn’t possible, at least to my knowledge. I believe the only way to define files for backup is by extension matching as shown in the exclude files field example. The only way I can think to achieve individual file selection without reorganizing your data (and assuming this file resides on an NTFS file system) would be to create a new folder and then create a hard link to the file of interest so that it appears inside that folder in addition to its normal location, then have Reflect back up that folder. This does NOT cause a copy of the file to be made, so it doesn’t take up any extra space on your drive, and it is not a distinct entity. But it’s more functional than an actual shortcut, because a hard link allows the same file to be accessed from multiple paths, and the file doesn’t actually get deleted until you delete all links to it.

O.k, thanks. 
Octopuss
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This is quite a shortcoming for a backup program, and makes no sense.

Roger
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Octopuss - 8 January 2020 8:29 AM
This is quite a shortcoming for a backup program, and makes no sense.

Agreed!

I have used many backup applications during the years and this is the first one that don´t offer a way to select individual files that still claims to be a superiour backup application.

No buy for me.
jphughan
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I guess there aren’t many cases where users only need to back up specific individual files as opposed to specific file types? I’m actually curious about your use case and folder structure that creates this need if you’d be willing to share the details. I agree it would be nice if it were available to those who needed it though.

I also forgot to mention that if it just so happens that your folder structure happens to be that you have a parent folder and then only that one file of interest even if you also have subfolders, you could select the parent folder as the backup source and then uncheck “Include Subfolders” in order to back up only the files immediately inside that parent folder.
Roger
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jphughan - 8 January 2020 2:30 PM
I guess there aren’t many cases where users only need to back up specific individual files as opposed to specific file types? I’m actually curious about your use case and folder structure that creates this need if you’d be willing to share the details.

I do video editing and video files are large, so they are manually backed up to multiple drives before one start cutting and do not need to be backed up again. In each project there are one or more project files for Adobe Premiere Pro, one or more project files for Adobe After Effects, a folder for older backup versions of the projects, one or more text files. There are one folder with nine subfolders per project. In each subfolder there is different file types such as .wav, .mp3 or .png, .psd, .jpg.

With other backup applications i can manually select those individual project files and text file/s files, one by one, scattered in the subfolders and in the root folder. This is not the case as easy with Macrium. Some times it is even impossible if there are multiple file wrappers in one folder while some needs backup while some don´t.
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Ah ok, cool use case.  If the video files you want to exclude always use a certain set of extensions and you never want to use Reflect to back up any files with those extensions, then you can definitely exclude files by extension, or INCLUDE only files with certain extensions and exclude everything else.  But if you need to get more granular than that, then unfortunately Reflect might not be the right tool for this particular job.  Sorry!

Octopuss
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If we can exclude specific files, I see no reason why we couldn't include some as well.
This doesn't even feel like some sort of limitation of the program, just a design decision that doesn't make much sense. Maybe they simply didn't think about this possibility.
My case - I back specific configuration files for specific programs up, but I do not want any of the other files to be present in the backup. Achieving this is borderline impossible under current implementation or exremely awkward.

BGregory
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Octopuss - 11 February 2020 9:27 AM
If we can exclude specific files, I see no reason why we couldn't include some as well.
This doesn't even feel like some sort of limitation of the program, just a design decision that doesn't make much sense. Maybe they simply didn't think about this possibility.
My case - I back specific configuration files for specific programs up, but I do not want any of the other files to be present in the backup. Achieving this is borderline impossible under current implementation or exremely awkward.

Hi Octupuss,
I don't want to steer anyone away from Reflect because it does what it was designed to do without equal, but I agree there are times when more granularity is necessary so I turned to a product called Backup4All by Softland for my file and folder backups.  It DOES NOT do imaging, only file and folder backups with more options, including your specifics, than one would possibly need.  Check it out.
Bob Grgeory
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