WinRE cannot open backup folder


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Joe Ossino
Joe Ossino
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This is for V7.2 Build 4971

I do a FULL files backup monthly on the first Monday of each calendar month. I had a successful backup last night. I created a recovery USB (WinRE) drive afterwards, from the same build. I did this because I could not find my originally created recovery disk.

To test the newly created recovery disk, I booted Win RE. When I tried to browse the full backup, I could not open one folder which contains backups of my digital photos. Only that folder had errors. The other folders that were backed up were browseable.

I rebooted win 10 and mounted the backup file. The backup of the photos folder opens just fine.

This concerns me a bit, since I don't want to lose the photos if the computer becomes unusable.

jphughan
jphughan
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What was the error?  If a screenshot would be efficient, note that the Rescue environment has a screenshot capability.  Just click the camera icon in the taskbar, and then a file save dialog box will pop up.  A full screen screenshot will be stored wherever you choose to save it.

If the log of the job that created the F&F backup in question doesn't show any errors and the backup mounts properly in Windows, then I suspect this will be a quirk of the WinRE environment you're using and/or a transient issue.  Again, a screenshot or at least a more detailed description of the error might be helpful.  Since you're using WinRE, this may well be an issue new for WinRE 10 2004.  WinRE causes your Rescue Media to be built using the WinRE files that match the kernel of the Windows version you're using.  The problem that creates though is that if Microsoft ever releases a buggy WinRE version, then that can adversely affect Reflect.  It's one of the reasons I stick to using WinPE 10 instead, since (currently) that causes Reflect to always build with WinPE 10 1709, a release that is not changing over time and that Macrium actually tested.  WinRE had an issue with the 1809 release where the first version broke Reflect's automatic driver loading, for example.  Microsoft recalled Windows 10 1809 entirely and the re-release didn't have that issue, but the early adopters who were using WinRE had Rescue Media problems simply because they updated Windows.

Lastly, as a general note, if you're using F&F backups and rely on browsing, be aware of the red-boxed note in this article.  Almost certainly not an issue if you're dealing with photos, but it's good to be aware of nonetheless.

Joe Ossino
Joe Ossino
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jphughan - 4 August 2020 5:28 PM
What was the error?  If a screenshot would be efficient, note that the Rescue environment has a screenshot capability.  Just click the camera icon in the taskbar, and then a file save dialog box will pop up.  A full screen screenshot will be stored wherever you choose to save it.

If the log of the job that created the F&F backup in question doesn't show any errors and the backup mounts properly in Windows, then I suspect this will be a quirk of the WinRE environment you're using and/or a transient issue.  Again, a screenshot or at least a more detailed description of the error might be helpful.  Since you're using WinRE, this may well be an issue new for WinRE 10 2004.  WinRE causes your Rescue Media to be built using the WinRE files that match the kernel of the Windows version you're using.  The problem that creates though is that if Microsoft ever releases a buggy WinRE version, then that can adversely affect Reflect.  It's one of the reasons I stick to using WinPE 10 instead, since (currently) that causes Reflect to always build with WinPE 10 1709, a release that is not changing over time and that Macrium actually tested.  WinRE had an issue with the 1809 release where the first version broke Reflect's automatic driver loading, for example.  Microsoft recalled Windows 10 1809 entirely and the re-release didn't have that issue, but the early adopters who were using WinRE had Rescue Media problems simply because they updated Windows.

Lastly, as a general note, if you're using F&F backups and rely on browsing, be aware of the red-boxed note in this article.  Almost certainly not an issue if you're dealing with photos, but it's good to be aware of nonetheless.

This is the result if I doubleclick the image folder (after mounting the backup). I am going to create a PE image and retry. I'll post the results here.

jphughan
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The dialog box indicates that the error is being thrown by the PE Explorer application, which is the very basic file browser application that Macrium developed for Rescue Media.  It does not necessarily indicate a problem with the backup itself.  One thing you might try if you're comfortable using Command Prompt is opening the Command Prompt application from the taskbar and seeing whether you can browse into that folder of your mounted backup that way.  If Command Prompt works, then you may have stumbled on a bug related to Macrium's PE Explorer application that's simply being triggered by something about the contents of the folder you're trying to access.

Joe Ossino
Joe Ossino
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I'll try the command prompt access after I try PE. Right now I'm formatting a thumb drive to take the PE image. You are correct that I am using Win 2004. I chose the RE version as the rescue media create process recommends that. But I didn't consider that 2004 might have issues that percolate down to the RE version.

jphughan
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Joe Ossino - 4 August 2020 6:18 PM
I'll try the command prompt access after I try PE. Right now I'm formatting a thumb drive to take the PE image. You are correct that I am using Win 2004. I chose the RE version as the rescue media create process recommends that. But I didn't consider that 2004 might have issues that percolate down to the RE version.

WinRE is the default because it can be used without having to download and cache a WinPE package from Microsoft (WinPE 10 1709 is about 1 GB) and because WinRE is required if you want WiFi support in Rescue.  And in some cases there is merit to having your Rescue Media built with the same Windows kernel as your main Windows environment.  For situations where additional drivers need to be copied into Rescue Media, that kernel alignment means that drivers can be copied right out of the main OS.  But the fact that Microsoft issues new major releases of Windows 10 approximately every 6 months means it's also true that using WinRE amounts to building a house (Rescue) on a shifting foundation (WinRE) -- and Microsoft's track record in terms of quality of new Windows 10 releases has been on the decline, in my opinion.  Even their regular monthly patches have had more than their fair share of serious side effects these days.  I don't need WiFi support in Rescue, and there's nothing that's been added to WinPE/RE since 1709 that I need, so I'm happy using WinPE 10 as my Base WIM so that I'm always feeding Reflect a baseline that is unchanging and Macrium-tested.

Joe Ossino
Joe Ossino
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I get the same error pop-up under WinPE 10 Release 1709 (64-Bit). Per your request, I tried and am able to access the directory and its subdirectories via the command prompt.

As to the file sizes: The largest .jpg files in the imgfiles directory (parent) are each about 18 megabytes. Nowhere near the 4GB limit. There are 312 subdirectories in the imgfiles directory. Could that be an issue?

jphughan
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Ok, then it sounds like you've stumbled on a bug within Macrium's PE Explorer application, possibly triggered by having a substantial quantity of subfolders.  Macrium Support reps may see this thread on their own, otherwise I would suggest submitting a formal support ticket as a bug report and linking to this thread.  My experience over a few years here has been that bug reports are worth submitting to Macrium, because the developers do try to reproduce them, and if they can, then those bugs usually get fixed in short order -- unlike many other vendors where submitting a bug report feels about as productive as shouting into the abyss.

GO

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