Need help to determine my backup strategy


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capair45
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dbminter - 25 February 2021 1:42 PM
I also keep 2 Rescue Media (3 if you count the boot menu option.) but I only have 1 USB; the other is a BD-RE.  I like to have redundant fallback options, so I also have an optical disc I can boot from should the other 2 methods prove unusable.


@capair45

I also do mostly Full's.  The only others I do are Incrementals and they're only done in two cases:

1.) between Daily backups before and after new software/software updates are installed or changes to software/Windows are made. 

2.) Incrementals are done manually on my data partitions as new files are added to them.

In addition to the Reflect images I store, I also use Bvckup2.  This program monitors all additions & changes made to the My Documents folder (this folder is on a dedicated internal disk separate from my OS disk).  The backup files stored there are in the native language which is convenient.  As soon as I save a document, a taskbar icon shows me that the file is being backed up.


Windows 10 Home (22H2)  Build 19045.4046 (Desktop)
Windows 11 Home (23H2)  Build 22631.3155 (Laptop)
Macrium Reflect 8.1.7847



d2racing911
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jphughan - 24 February 2021 10:01 PM

If your PC is off when a scheduled backup is supposed to occur, then it is considered "missed".  There is an option to have Reflect run missed backups as soon as possible when the PC starts up again.  If you have that enabled, then a missed backup will run immediately, which may or may not be convenient.  If you keep that disabled, then those missed backups will simply be skipped and you'll get your next backup at the next scheduled time.  Note that even if you have the "Run missed backups asap" option enabled, you won't end up with back-to-back executions of the same job. 

I searched everywhere and I didn't find the "Run missed backups asap", can someone tell me where's that option Tongue
Thanks :
jphughan - 24 February 2021 10:01 PM
Happy to help!  The good news is that what you want to do is possible, and Reflect is designed to deal with some of the concerns you're raising.

Yes, you can create a Full backup schedule that runs on the first Monday of every month.  I'd recommend making sure you're using the Macrium Task Scheduler rather than Windows Task Scheduler for that though (check Edit Defaults > Schedule) because when I used that schedule under Windows Task Scheduler, it created an unwanted second backup each month on the day before it was supposed to.

Yes, you can also create a Differential schedule that runs once per week on Sunday.  But you may want to set that to Monday for reasons I'll get to in a moment.

And yes, you can certainly schedule an Incremental backup to occur on all other days.

Reflect has a useful design feature when it comes to scheduling.  If you have a schedule that means multiple backup types for the same job are scheduled to occur at the same time, then only the "highest order" backup will run.  So a Full takes priority over a Diff, which takes priority over an Inc.  So for example you could say, "Incremental every day at 6 PM" and "Differential every week on Sunday at 6 PM".  On Sundays, Reflect will only run the Differential and automatically skip the Incremental.  And this is why I said you might want to schedule your Differentials for Monday, the same day as your Fulls.  Because if you do that, then on any Monday that is the first Monday of the month, Reflect will run the Full and automatically skip the Differential AND the Incremental.

You do not have to worry about making sure backups finish before the next one is scheduled to start.  If a backup is already running when a second backup is scheduled, then the second backup will be queued and will begin as soon as the current backup completes.  So the second backup will start late, but it will still run normally otherwise.

If your PC is off when a scheduled backup is supposed to occur, then it is considered "missed".  There is an option to have Reflect run missed backups as soon as possible when the PC starts up again.  If you have that enabled, then a missed backup will run immediately, which may or may not be convenient.  If you keep that disabled, then those missed backups will simply be skipped and you'll get your next backup at the next scheduled time.  Note that even if you have the "Run missed backups asap" option enabled, you won't end up with back-to-back executions of the same job.  For example, if you have daily Incrementals scheduled, and you enabled "Run missed backups asap", and then turn off your PC for 4 days during the week, then Reflect isn't going to create 4 Incrementals in a row for the same job when you finally turn your PC back on.  That would be pointless.  It will only run one backup, and I believe it will be the "highest order" backup that was missed.  So for example if your PC was off long enough to cause you to miss an Incremental, then a Differential, and then two more Incrementals, I think only the Differential will run -- but I'm not 100% sure about that.  But by comparison, if you have multiple completely separate JOBS configured and all of them have that option enabled, then you will get one backup for each of those jobs to compensate for the backups that were missed.

In terms of retention, you can set the retention policy you want.  Reflect allows you to set separate retention policies for each backup type (Full, Diff, Inc) in terms of either how many backups to retain or how long to retain them.  If you want to use time-based retention, you can specify time in days or weeks.  So if you want 6 months, enter 24 weeks.  That's not precisely 6 months, but Reflect doesn't allow month-based retention, possibly because of complications from the fact that not all months have the same number of days.  And then you could say to keep your Differentials for only 4 weeks, and your Incrementals for 1-2 weeks (or whatever you wanted).  Just make sure that your Fulls have the longest retention period, then your Differentials, then your Incrementals.  It would not make sense to try to keep Fulls for 4 weeks and Differentials for 12 weeks, for example.  The Full would get deleted after 4 weeks, and that would cause any of its Differentials to be deleted as well, so you would never end up retaining Differentials for 12 weeks that way.


Beardy
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I searched everywhere and I didn't find the "Run missed backups asap", can someone tell me where's that option Tongue

Guide scheduling:
https://knowledgebase.macrium.com/display/KNOW72/Scheduling+backups
About the 4th illustration down you'll see a checkbox at the bottom of the dialogue.


jphughan
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It's not exactly where it's shown in the KB article.  When you click Add Schedule and select a type (Full/Diff/Inc), in the dialog that pops up, you'll see a Conditions button in the lower-left corner.  Click that. Smile

Edited 27 February 2021 6:00 AM by jphughan
d2racing911
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Beardy - 27 February 2021 5:55 AM

I searched everywhere and I didn't find the "Run missed backups asap", can someone tell me where's that option Tongue

Guide scheduling:
https://knowledgebase.macrium.com/display/KNOW72/Scheduling+backups
About the 4th illustration down you'll see a checkbox at the bottom of the dialogue.


Thanks Tongue I removed that option, because anyway I run the father,grandfather and son schedule.

d2racing911
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jphughan - 24 February 2021 10:01 PM
Happy to help!  The good news is that what you want to do is possible, and Reflect is designed to deal with some of the concerns you're raising.

Yes, you can create a Full backup schedule that runs on the first Monday of every month.  I'd recommend making sure you're using the Macrium Task Scheduler rather than Windows Task Scheduler for that though (check Edit Defaults > Schedule) because when I used that schedule under Windows Task Scheduler, it created an unwanted second backup each month on the day before it was supposed to.


Do I need to make sure that Macrium is running in background all the time ?
Last night I rebooted my PC and I don't remember starting it. Did I miss a backup schedule because of that ?

Thanks :
jphughan
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No, regardless of whether you use Macrium’s scheduler or Windows Task Scheduler, Reflect does not need to be open for backups to run. You don’t even need to be logged into Windows, which is how it’s possible to back up servers where local user logon sessions are typically rare.
d2racing911
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I'm doing something wrong for sure, my scheduled backup did start at 2h00 am.

What am I missing do you think ?

I did all run my first full backup on every task.


My PC will run 24/7 until Monday morning for sure.

Maybe everything will take it's place on next Monday (first Monday of the month). I thought that running a full backup manually could let start the first incremental and on next Monday, I would endup with an another full backup and now the schedule could run as usual.

Thanks Tongue


Edited 27 February 2021 6:13 PM by d2racing911
jphughan
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I'm not sure what you're asking here. Did you mean to say that your backup did NOT start at 2 AM?  In your post above you say it "did start", in which case I don't see a problem.  But if you have multiple completely separate jobs all set to start at the same time, Reflect will not run them all simultaneously.  It will run them sequentially.  Also, it appears you have many different definition files but you're using the exact same schedules for all of them.  Unless you are using different retention policy settings for those jobs, then you might want to consider backing up all of those folders in the same job in order to simplify your configuration.  A File & Folder backup job can include more than one source folder, even if they are on different drives, as shown below.  If you need to use different retention policies for different data and/or want to back up that data to different locations, then you will want to have separate definition files.  But if you are using the same schedule, retention policy, and destination folder for all of the jobs in your screenshot, then you should consolidate all of those into a single backup job.  Also, you do not have to manually run a Full.  If Reflect ever has a Differential or Incremental scheduled to occur and it isn't possible to create one of those because there is no Full available, then Reflect will automatically create a Full instead.  And the job log will note that this happened and why it happened.

Here is an example of a single File & Folder backup job that includes 3 completely different folders on 3 different drives.  All of this will be backed up as a single job.



Edited 27 February 2021 10:05 PM by jphughan
dbminter
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I was a bit confused over the did start at 2 AM statement myself.

GO

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