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  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger
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    I just thought I'd post a warning so people can try to avoid the headache I'm going through now. I bought a new 2 TB backup external USB drive (Western Digital) and, after putting lots of files on it, tried to continue the backup process by simply using Windows Copy/Paste for another very large block of files. Nothing seemed to happen; the system seemed to hang and hang and hang. I'm not sure if I left it overnight but I know I gave it lots of time to finish copying. Nothing I could do would stop the hang, not Cancel, not Task Manager, nothing. So finally I pushed the reset button. I think that's what caused the trouble. Now every time I plug in that external USB drive, Windows offers to Scan and Fix it. I found this explanation: "Typically this prompt means that a delayed write wasn't completed (i.e. a cache wasn't flushed successfully) and it marks the drive signature as dirty and needing to be scanned." So I let it try to Scan and Fix, overnight again. About 8 hours later it still wasn't finished, and in fact it appeared to have finished checking the files, index entries and the SDs/SSIDs (whatever they are exactly) and I think it was starting to check the files again - the message about exactly what it was doing was not helpful. So I canceled it. Somewhere on the Internet it says I should do a chkdsk :j /f from the command line rather than using Scan & Fix, so I'm trying that. At the moment I do not have access to all my backup files and worry that they all might be lost.

    The moral? I'm not sure. Is it not to use Windows Copy/Paste for large blocks of files, or wait 3-4 days to see if a Windows Copy/Paste finishes, or find some new way to interrupt a Copy/Paste? At the moment I'm thinking I should keep TWO backups of everything (as if it's not hard enough to force myself to backup regularly once).

    I know I should wait until the ongoing chkdsk process finishes before posting this message, but it has been working for 3-4 hours so far and it is still only 67% complete. I hope it's going to end by repairing the drive successfully, giving me access to it and keeping all my files intact.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Windows Copy/Paste is fine but in reasonable chunk sizes. I like to avoid coppying more than a dozen GBs at one time with USB type drives.

    Yes, I would wait for the checkdisk to finish with the drive and also consider running Western Digital's own diagnostic utility on it if there is anymore
    question about the integrity of the drive.
    Another thing to keep in mind is that with a 2 TB drive, extensive scans like checkdisk f or r, will take long periods of time to run through all that space.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
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  3. #3
    New Lounger
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    I agree with Clint above re: limiting any one copy experience to approximately 12GB at one time. However, with what you've been doing so far, and with not being sure if data copied accurately, I would consider formatting the drive and starting your copy and paste over, in batches of 12GB at a time. Once that's done, you'll have your backup and will only have to copy new material when you create it. Good luck

  4. #4
    Gold Lounger Roderunner's Avatar
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    As you used copy/paste, the originals will still be in original location, so do a full format.
    O wad some Power the giftie gie us, to see oursels as ithers see us!

  5. #5
    2 Star Lounger
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    You're all probably right that I might have to format my new 2 TB drive and start over again, this time without using Copy/Paste. Fred Langa's recent column put me on to Windows Robocopy, which I might try. Or maybe I'll use my preferred backup program, Karen Kenworthy's Replicator, to copy/backup everything. But the job is not going to be pretty, since there are tons of files on the big drive accumulated over many years and copied from several smaller external drives whose originals were then deleted (the Copy/Paste problem occurred only in the most recent phase of the process). I`ll have to dump everything onto some other media before the reformat.

    Windows Backup & Restore refuses to use the big drive, saying "Back & Restore to J: Windows cannot find the disk or network location where your backups are being saved" and my other external drives don't have enough space on them, so I don't have any image backup even close to current.

    Just for interest, here's what I experienced using chkdsk. It worked through various stages:
    1. verifying files
    2. verifying indexes
    3. verifying security descriptors (SDs/SIDs)
    4. verifying Usn journal
    5. Usn Journal verification completed.
    That took -89 hours. Then it froze.

    All in all, it became one of those ongoing computer horrors that made me want to give up technology completely and go live in a cave. It's a week later now, and I'm just barely beginning to think I might have to address this problem again ... sometime.

    I appreciate the helpful comments.

  6. #6
    2 Star Lounger
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    I like Teracopy.

    Very fast when copying,
    Does not stall when Windows permissions etc. refuses to copy, but moves on to the next file,
    Even faster when reading back each copy and computing hash checksums to compare with originals,
    Upon completion "Cleanup" removes from screen all the successes and shows only what failed,
    and allows you to suspend whilst you fix permissions etc and then will resume copying only the failures.

    I never copy a GB without Teracopy.

  7. #7
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    Here's a link to the Teracopy homepage - Codesector.com - Teracopy.

    Joe
    Joe

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