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Archive of Deleted Items

PaulK :

Sep 15, 2014

So, over the weekend we had a DFS server fail. Neat. The good news is that we have two other servers serving the data. The bad news was that several files hadn't replicated to the other servers prior to the failure.

But that's OK, because I back all that stuff up. Bvckup (quite rightly) determined that the files that hadn't replicated had been deleted and proceeded to move those to the Archive for safe keeping.

Here's the rub - instead of 072914 1.jpg I now have 072914 1 (deleted on 2014-09-14 at 02-00-00).jpg. Not a big deal if you're recovering one file here or there, but when you have a few hundred to restore it's a bit annoying. I'm going to write a vbscript to handle the rename, but it would be nice if there was another way to handle this.

genl :

Sep 16, 2014

I agree, this needs to get addressed.

There needs to be an option to not include dates in the filenames at least.

Seems like it was partly discussed elsewhere: I think Bvckup needs a separate log inside "$Archive of Deleted Items (Bvckup)\" that would save all events inside that folder, with dates.

Alex Pankratov :

Sep 16, 2014


The thing is that these tags are the simplest way to resolve ambiguities when the same gets deleted twice or when a file gets deleted on its own and later on gets deleted again as a part of its folder. I mean, if there are no tags, then in both of these cases we'd have two copies of a file competing for the same spot in the archive.

Incidentally, it's possible to get rid of the tags altogether. In the settings.ini file of a backup job there's an entry called "conf.archive_file_tag" and that's the archived item tag. Emptying it would yield no tags on the archived files, so it's doable.

All that said, this -

it would be nice if there was another way to handle this.

- is a fair point. What I'm thinking is that there probably needs to be some sort of archive management module in the UI. Another request that has surfaced earlier was to allow manually trimming the archive to certain size. If this is done, then it'd be a logical place to put the un-archival option as well.

genl :

Sep 17, 2014

I think the importance of an old copy of some file that was deleted from the source more than 1 time is overestimated, at least it's too much to do the whole time-tag-naming thing. Perhaps this is something that file versioning should take care of?

I'm more concerned about the fact that it may potentially greatly increase the size of backup destination, and about potential file paths and names that may be too long to be handled by applications.

"$Archive of Deleted Items (Bvckup)" - 34 symbols
" (deleted on 20xx-xx-xx at 00-00-00)" - 36 symbols

genl :

Sep 29, 2014

I've now tried to get rid of some files inside $Archive folder for one job and Explorer said it can't do it since its name/path is too long. Had to rename at least one parent folder to do anything with it at all.

Alex Pankratov :

Oct 01, 2014

I think the importance of an old copy of some file that was deleted from the source more than 1 time is overestimated

Oh, I agree. It *is* an edge case. The tags though are re-used for keeping track of the item's age in the archive, which in turn is used when trimming the archive. The alternative would be to keep the archival timestamp in some sort of archive index, but then it would mean having such index to begin with and dealing with its consistency and what not.

I hear you on tags being too long, but I frankly don't see any viable *simple* alternative. This issue should indeed just go away with the addition of full versioning, but that's some time away from now.

pjb :

Oct 01, 2014

Here's an alternative on keeping timestamp to minimum.

In databases I've worked with Oracle and Mysql, a database field defined as datetimestamp is really Unix timestamp which is basically the number of seconds from a fixed date Jan 1, 1970 GMT


So in order to have user friendly display in Bvckup, Bvckup would need to calc it.  However, if you are looking just at the path in the archive folder under Windows Explorer, the value of the unix timestamp would not mean alot but the Date modified field in Windows explorer would give a clue by giving a user friendly date at least.


Alex Pankratov :

Oct 01, 2014

The thing is that archiving is done by moving and moving preserves both created and modified timestamps. And that's a nice thing to have if anyone ever needs to restore from the archive, so they could get an *exact* file back just by moving it back in place.

Re: unix timestamp - I'll add this. At the moment the app understand $time and $date variables in conf.archive_file_tag from backup's settings.ini. I'll just add $epoch that will get expanded into the unix timestamp. Good suggestion, thanks.

genl :

Oct 01, 2014

I would gladly have a full logfile with file move operations inside $Archive over being able to auto-clean old deleted files AND having them name-tagged.

You could use c-times for that... I wouldn't mind. I think original filenames are more important than original c-times.

jpk2118 :

Jan 07, 2015

i cant seem to find my archive files, sometimes it puts the deleted files in the same folder but the folder i am backing up to is in appdata, it has administrator rights, where does it put the archive?

Alex Pankratov :

Jan 08, 2015

The archive folder is at the root of your destination (backup) location. Right-click on the backup job in main window, select Open Location > Archive and it will open it up in Windows Explorer.

AndCycle :

Jan 13, 2015

you can just create separate directory for deleted file like

$Archive of Deleted Items (Bvckup)\(deleted on 2015-01-08 at 06-01-26)\file.a
$Archive of Deleted Items (Bvckup)\(deleted on 2015-01-08 at 06-01-27)\file.a

this is also a simplest to solve the issue which I remember oops backup do

sunk818 :

Oct 31, 2017

Is it possible to configure $date and $time to be a different format?

Was looking to do YYMMDD HHmmss in the file name instead.

$epoch is not implemented right? I just tried and it doesn't work for me.

Alex Pankratov :

Nov 01, 2017

Is it possible to configure $date and $time to be a different format?

No, not possible.

$epoch is not implemented right?

Not yet. I thought it'd be an easy tweak, but upon close inspection it wasn't, so it was pushed on a ToDo list. It is still on it though.

bobbyz :

Oct 16, 2020

Is this available now:

"$Archive of Deleted Items (Bvckup)\(deleted on 2015-01-08 at 06-01-26)\file.a
$Archive of Deleted Items (Bvckup)\(deleted on 2015-01-08 at 06-01-27)\file.a"

It will be great if I can have a root Archive folder based on the day those files were deleted. I see in another topic that it was mentioned that this might be available on version - 82.

Alex Pankratov :

Oct 16, 2020

This is planned for R82.

The background here is that the archiving was originally meant as a safety net for accidental deletions at source on individual files. So the focus was on an easy retrieval of archived copies by the _file name_ rather than by _date_. You'd just navigate where the file was originally, and there it'll be, with the date/time tag added to allow for multiple copies of the same file to be archived side by side.

Over the years the Archive purpose has evolved with people using it to preserve files in bulk. This makes restoring from the archive tedious. So with R82 we'll migrate to a new scheme whereby the date/time is recorded in the name of a top folder under $Archive.

bobbyz :

Oct 16, 2020

Thanks. Looking forward to this. In the mean time, I should get the paid version and start using it.

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