File backup seems slow since V 7.2.4884 - SOLVED Bad Hard Drive


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Curt G
Curt G
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I have a 3tb disk, call it DD1 that has 295336 # of files, 16087 Folders, size of 724.57 GB for the backup using Version 7.2.4971. It states that it will take over 200 hours to do a full backup. The I/O performance was Read 8.9 Mb/s and Write  11.3 Gb/s. I cancelled that file backup since it would take too long. That Dell system is running Windows 10 V 1903 Build 18362.900.

I checked my Macrium logfile and the last time I did a full backup was 5/17/2020 using Macrium V 7.2.4884. At that time the # of files was 295229, # of folders 1607, size 723.89 GB total time for that backup was 6:12:21 hours. The I/O performance was Read 1.4 Gb/s and Write 4.0 Gb/s according to the log. I don't have a record of the version of Windows 10 build that I was running then. Is there a way to get the older version of Macrium 7.2.4884 to see if it is the version of Macrium has an issue? No hardware has changed on my system. FYI there does not seem to be any speed issues using that drive with applications. Using Defraggler the fragmentation is 0% at the time of writing this.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.
Thanks,
Curt G.

Edited 1 July 2020 4:48 PM by Curt G
jphughan
jphughan
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I've seen Macrium Support provide installers for older releases before, but I doubt something this severe would have crept in during a minor release update without several reports of problems.  Any chance you're running third-party anti-virus that might have updated in the background and is now interfering with Reflect?

And just as a suggestion, if you're backing up an entire disk, you should probably consider performing an image backup rather than a File & Folder backup.  It's absolutely possible to extract individual files and folders out of an image backup if that's what you're concerned about -- in fact in some ways it's actually easier to do than out of an F&F backup due to a limitation with the "Browse" feature when using F&F backups -- and even under normal circumstances, image backups tend to outperform F&F backups because F&F backups are file-level backups and are therefore subject to per-file processing overhead, while image backups are block-level backups that are not subject to that overhead.  On a file server that I support, an image backup runs about 2.5x faster than an F&F backup of the same data.  The only reason I can think of for making an F&F backup of an entire disk (or even an entire partition) would be if you had a lot of custom, non-inherited NTFS permissions defined at various levels of your folder hierarchy, as might be the case on a file server, for example.  In that case, the fact that the Restore wizard for F&F backups allows you to restore the content and its custom NTFS permissions can be valuable, since achieving that outcome with an image backup would require command line tools.  But apart from that, I can't think of any time where backing up an entire disk would be better done via F&F than image backup.  The only times I've seen people do this is when they figured it was necessary in order to be able to restore individual files and folders because they weren't aware that image backups have a Browse feature for this purpose.

Curt G
Curt G
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jphughan - 30 June 2020 5:23 PM
I've seen Macrium Support provide installers for older releases before, but I doubt something this severe would have crept in during a minor release update without several reports of problems.  Any chance you're running third-party anti-virus that might have updated in the background and is now interfering with Reflect?

And just as a suggestion, if you're backing up an entire disk, you should probably consider performing an image backup rather than a File & Folder backup.  It's absolutely possible to extract individual files and folders out of an image backup if that's what you're concerned about -- in fact in some ways it's actually easier to do than out of an F&F backup due to a limitation with the "Browse" feature when using F&F backups -- and even under normal circumstances, image backups tend to outperform F&F backups because F&F backups are file-level backups and are therefore subject to per-file processing overhead, while image backups are block-level backups that are not subject to that overhead.  On a file server that I support, an image backup runs about 2.5x faster than an F&F backup of the same data.  The only reason I can think of for making an F&F backup of an entire disk (or even an entire partition) would be if you had a lot of custom, non-inherited NTFS permissions defined at various levels of your folder hierarchy, as might be the case on a file server, for example.  In that case, the fact that the Restore wizard for F&F backups allows you to restore the content and its custom NTFS permissions can be valuable, since achieving that outcome with an image backup would require command line tools.  But apart from that, I can't think of any time where backing up an entire disk would be better done via F&F than image backup.  The only times I've seen people do this is when they figured it was necessary in order to be able to restore individual files and folders because they weren't aware that image backups have a Browse feature for this purpose.

jphughan,
I am running BitDefender. Under Protection>FireWall>Settings I have the following EXEs with rules allowed All access and ports and Anytime:
reflectbin.exe, reflectui.exe and reflectmonitor.exe. Should there be any additional EXEs included?
I'll try the image when I have access to the machine again. It just seems strange that the process slowed from one version to another.
jphughan
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Reflect.exe should probably be added.  And RMBuilder.exe since sometimes AV interferes with Rescue Media creation.  But I don't know why that would be under "Firewall" settings.  Typically allowed applications in firewall settings are allowed to send and receive network traffic without interference, which isn't relevant here -- unless I guess you're backing up to a network location, but even then the goal is to prevent interference from anti-malware interference, not firewall interference.

And then if you can exclude your destination folder(s) from background scanning, that wouldn't be a bad idea either.

Edited 30 June 2020 6:51 PM by jphughan
Curt G
Curt G
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jphughan - 30 June 2020 6:49 PM
Reflect.exe should probably be added.  And RMBuilder.exe since sometimes AV interferes with Rescue Media creation.  But I don't know why that would be under "Firewall" settings.  Typically allowed applications in firewall settings are allowed to send and receive network traffic without interference, which isn't relevant here -- unless I guess you're backing up to a network location, but even then the goal is to prevent interference from anti-malware interference, not firewall interference.

And then if you can exclude your destination folder(s) from background scanning, that wouldn't be a bad idea either.

I'll add those EXEs. The destination drive is connected local to the machine via eSATA the external enclosure is a VanTec NST-366SU3-BK.

jphughan
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Ok, then I guess I'm just wondering if those EXEs might be listed in the wrong area of the application, i.e. you're marking them as trusted/allowed for a completely different (and in this care irrelevant) component.  Are you sure that the slow performance occurred just after updating?  The reason I ask is that anti-malware applications tend to update constantly in the background, so there's always the possibility of breakage occurring even without you actively doing anything.  And there are plenty of cases of third party anti-malware solutions dramatically slowing down or completely blocking various Reflect tasks.  Macrium even has this KB article about it.  Making things even more exciting, many such solutions don't always give an indication that they're interfering with or blocking anything, and sometimes even disabling them doesn't truly disable them.  I've helped people where things didn't work as expected until the offending anti-malware solution was completely uninstalled.  This is all mostly why I dumped third party AV when Microsoft introduced Security Essentials (later rebranded as Defender and built into Windows), but that's a bigger soapbox.

Curt G
Curt G
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jphughan - 30 June 2020 7:22 PM
Ok, then I guess I'm just wondering if those EXEs might be listed in the wrong area of the application, i.e. you're marking them as trusted/allowed for a completely different (and in this care irrelevant) component.  Are you sure that the slow performance occurred just after updating?  The reason I ask is that anti-malware applications tend to update constantly in the background, so there's always the possibility of breakage occurring even without you actively doing anything.  And there are plenty of cases of third party anti-malware solutions dramatically slowing down or completely blocking various Reflect tasks.  Macrium even has this KB article about it.  Making things even more exciting, many such solutions don't always give an indication that they're interfering with or blocking anything, and sometimes even disabling them doesn't truly disable them.  I've helped people where things didn't work as expected until the offending anti-malware solution was completely uninstalled.  This is all mostly why I dumped third party AV when Microsoft introduced Security Essentials (later rebranded as Defender and built into Windows), but that's a bigger soapbox.

Made the changes. Running Image. The speed is 11.3MB rather than GB. How about I boot from the Rescue Media and try the Image backup. That would eliminate the Virus software. I'll make sure to remove the Network cable. What do you think should I try that?

Curt G
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Curt G - 30 June 2020 7:52 PM
jphughan - 30 June 2020 7:22 PM
Ok, then I guess I'm just wondering if those EXEs might be listed in the wrong area of the application, i.e. you're marking them as trusted/allowed for a completely different (and in this care irrelevant) component.  Are you sure that the slow performance occurred just after updating?  The reason I ask is that anti-malware applications tend to update constantly in the background, so there's always the possibility of breakage occurring even without you actively doing anything.  And there are plenty of cases of third party anti-malware solutions dramatically slowing down or completely blocking various Reflect tasks.  Macrium even has this KB article about it.  Making things even more exciting, many such solutions don't always give an indication that they're interfering with or blocking anything, and sometimes even disabling them doesn't truly disable them.  I've helped people where things didn't work as expected until the offending anti-malware solution was completely uninstalled.  This is all mostly why I dumped third party AV when Microsoft introduced Security Essentials (later rebranded as Defender and built into Windows), but that's a bigger soapbox.

Made the changes. Running Image. The speed is 11.3MB rather than GB. How about I boot from the Rescue Media and try the Image backup. That would eliminate the Virus software. I'll make sure to remove the Network cable. What do you think should I try that?

I booted from the Rescue Media using Macrium 7.2.497. No performance change. Read I/O speed in MB Write in GB.
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Testing in Rescue is indeed a good way to eliminate other variables within the OS environment.  The write speed relates to the destination.  But that read speed is indeed very slow.  If you're lucky, this might be fixable by replacing the SATA cable if this is a desktop PC.  Otherwise, typically extremely slow read speed is that's a symptom of a damaged or imminently failing disk because Reflect is trying repeatedly to read data that the drive isn't able to read.  Since you mentioned that your drive appears to be performing normally in other contexts, my guess would be that you might "just" have a damaged portion of the disk that Reflect is trying to read (and re-read, over and over again) as part of its backup job, but that you haven't yet tried to read in the course of your general usage.  I helped my parents capture a Reflect image backup of a failing disk and it definitely hung at various locations.  To deal with that, I had them resort to the very crude but effective method of applying a bit of force.  They had an all-in-one PC where the hard drive was mounted right up against the rear of the chassis.  I told them what when Reflect got stuck, they should knock on the back of the chassis where the hard drive was located a few times, knowing that with spinning hard drives, sometimes a bit of external vibration can nudge the spinning parts just enough to allow a good read on a dying disk.  They had to do it at about a dozen points in the image process, and in the end there were a few sectors that Reflect couldn't capture at all, but every time they knocked on their system the progress bar started moving forward again, and the ETA dropped from hundreds of hours to dozens of minutes.

Obviously that's not a sustainable solution.  That was just to get a backup of their data before replacing the disk -- which you may want to consider doing at this point.

Curt G
Curt G
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jphughan - 30 June 2020 9:29 PM
Testing in Rescue is indeed a good way to eliminate other variables within the OS environment.  The write speed relates to the destination.  But that read speed is indeed very slow.  If you're lucky, this might be fixable by replacing the SATA cable if this is a desktop PC.  Otherwise, typically extremely slow read speed is that's a symptom of a damaged or imminently failing disk because Reflect is trying repeatedly to read data that the drive isn't able to read.  Since you mentioned that your drive appears to be performing normally in other contexts, my guess would be that you might "just" have a damaged portion of the disk that Reflect is trying to read (and re-read, over and over again) as part of its backup job, but that you haven't yet tried to read in the course of your general usage.  I helped my parents capture a Reflect image backup of a failing disk and it definitely hung at various locations.  To deal with that, I had them resort to the very crude but effective method of applying a bit of force.  They had an all-in-one PC where the hard drive was mounted right up against the rear of the chassis.  I told them what when Reflect got stuck, they should knock on the back of the chassis where the hard drive was located a few times, knowing that with spinning hard drives, sometimes a bit of external vibration can nudge the spinning parts just enough to allow a good read on a dying disk.  They had to do it at about a dozen points in the image process, and in the end there were a few sectors that Reflect couldn't capture at all, but every time they knocked on their system the progress bar started moving forward again, and the ETA dropped from hundreds of hours to dozens of minutes.

Obviously that's not a sustainable solution.  That was just to get a backup of their data before replacing the disk -- which you may want to consider doing at this point.

Interesting! Looking at the Defraggler stats for the drive I noticed. See the attached stat file


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DD1 Stats.txt (8 views, 1.00 KB)
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