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26  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Seeking experiences from people backing up relatively large personal data sets on: November 23, 2012, 02:12:37 AM
Thanks Renegade. Unfortunately with that little data (relatively speaking), it's not a direct comparison. I also have a very beefy machine, actually a bit beefier than yours. Wink And have 16GB of RAM. Most of the time I can "spare" 2GB for my backup process, it just seems like I shouldn't have to. However...

Jibz, I appreciate the angle you took, and it was something I was thinking about as well but didn't really know how to quantify. From your "back of the napkin" calculations indeed the memory use could be justifiable for deduplication. I'm kind of tempted to disable that if I can and see what happens. I do have 2 separate backup sets, 1 for photos (like you, though I haven't changed its frequency of backup, and maybe I should), and one for everything else. The photos are by far the largest backup set, about 2/3s of the data.

So, I'll try to tweak a few things, but would still love to hear some feedback from others with similar backup needs/scenarios, especially anyone using one of the other "unlimited" online backup services with 1+TB of data, e.g. Carbonite, Backblaze, etc.

- Oshyan
27  News and Reviews / Mini-Reviews by Members / Re: Not-so-mini review of CrashPlan backup software on: November 21, 2012, 07:23:38 PM
Sooo, I started running into a persistent crashing issue with, er, CrashPlan (hah!). Upon contacting support, they indicated it seemed to be running out of memory and that I should up the amount allowed for the service process. OK. Default is 512MB. Increased to 768MB. Nope. 1024MB. No... 2048MB? Yes, it works! And oddly, for a few days, seems to be using little more than the 500MB it was originally allowed, even though a 768MB allowance did not let it run. But wait... a few more days later and the service process is now using 1.5GB!? Oh damn. A week later, ~2GB. Well crap. Response from their support is "You have a complex/big backup set, CrashPlan is doing a lot of work, it's going to take a lot of memory." OK, I say, "Do you think this is "normal" for anyone backing up this much data in general, or is this just CrashPlan?" Unsurprisingly, their answer is "I can't comment on other software." So now I'm really wondering if this is just what I have to put up with because of my "big data" needs (I hope and think not!). Hence my new thread, hehe: http://www.donationcoder....rum/index.php?topic=32951

- Oshyan
28  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Seeking experiences from people backing up relatively large personal data sets on: November 21, 2012, 07:23:00 PM
I am currently dealing with some issues with CrashPlan, the combined online and local backup service I reviewed and selected last year for my personal backup needs: http://www.donationcoder....m/index.php?topic=26224.0

One of the problems I am seeing is really high memory use, 1.5-2GB for the backup process (running as a service) at peak. It starts out lower but climbs over the course of a day or two to about that level, then hangs there, presumably as a result of performing more complex operations on the large data set, e.g. encryption, deduplication, versioning, etc.

Now until recently I've been reasonably happy with CrashPlan, but my confidence has definitely been shaken lately. I'm not seeking actual recommendations for other options just yet, but I'm starting the research process. A big part of that is trying to determine whether what I am experiencing is anywhere close to normal *considering my data backup needs*. It may simply be that I'm asking too much of the system and need to get more reasonable, hehe. So what I would love is to hear from other people who are doing fairly large backups to *online* systems, ideally with the following features/characteristics (or close to):

  • Data set at least 1TB, preferably around 2TB (my full data set is 1.9TB at present)
  • Number of files at least 1 million, ideally 1.5 million or more (I have 1.5 million files backed up at present)
  • Combined local and online backup (online backup is an important component; if you're only doing local, your info may be valuable, but it makes it not a direct comparison with CrashPlan)
  • Encryption (being done locally)
  • Deduplication being done on the backup set(s)
  • Continuous backup/file system monitoring (this is not a critical requirement as I do not absolutely need the feature, but this is the way CrashPlan runs, so it would make it most directly comparable
  • File versioning

The info I'm looking for is 1: What software are you using, 2: How often/on what schedule does it run, 3: How much data are you backing up, both in terms of number of files, and total size, 4: How much memory does the process (or processes) use at peak and on average, 5: How much CPU does the backup process use when actively backing up.

Hearing from other CrashPlan users with similar circumstances to myself would certainly be useful. It's very possible that the combination of data size, number of files, and features such as deduplication and file versioning simply make such high memory use somewhat inevitable (or a much slower backup by paging out to disk a lot more). If so, then it's time for me to think about getting rid of some features like possibly versioning (or try reducing length of version history perhaps). But I won't know until I can get some reference points as to whether this seems normal under the circumstances. Trying a bunch of different backup systems myself seems somewhat unfeasible as most would make me pay for uploading more than a fraction of my data, and online backup is a critical component of this.

Any info you can provide on your experiences would be great. Thanks!

- Oshyan
29  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: I need some help configuring Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4 on: November 21, 2012, 06:53:55 PM
Can you give examples of what text fields (or other actions) trigger the problem? Does it seem at all related to accessing the Windows file system, or is it far more Lightroom-specific, i.e. typing in pretty much any dialog (e.g. adding a keyword to a file) causes it? Are there any other delays or slowdowns, both in Lightroom, and other apps? I use LR4 regularly myself and, though there are occasional issues, it seems at least as fast as LR3 for me in most cases, and for some things it's faster.

- Oshyan
30  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Help me choose an online backup service on: October 31, 2012, 01:43:43 PM
What you say about their forum was not entirely the experience I had when I last checked/used it, but that was more than a year ago. My experience differed in the fact that I saw plenty of complaint threads, so it did not seem so much like the forum was "sanitized", and there was a reasonably level of response from support there, but still too many unanswered questions, particularly more obscure issues. In other words, I found that it was not a censorship issue (though that may be the case now, if they've decided to clean things up), rather they answered easy questions (um, yay?), but sometimes left harder ones unanswered, which is really the opposite of what's needed in a way; the easier questions should be covered by FAQ usually...

Anyway, glad to hear you got a quick response. Overall I was happy with their support and my direct contact with them, I think their forum support just may not be the best contact method.

Also, that review is pretty much worthless. The guy mentions no real, actual problems besides a default he doesn't like/agree with for what to backup (a default that I personally think is quite reasonable), and that the upload bandwidth being used wasn't ideal. But then he writes snarky and totally non-applicable responses to the legitimately helpful CrashPlan support rep that comments on his review. The rep said nothing promotional, they merely explained the choice of default and a possible reason for the slow upload, both of which could address his only reported issues. He fails to comment on the efficacy of the recommended fixes, spending several paragraphs simply saying how dumb the default is and how promotional the obviously not promotional CrashPlan post is. His responses to other comments are also terrible. Meanwhile his review title/headline implies that CrashPlan actually *crashed*, which he does not report at all in the text of the "review", again only citing what are essentially *defaults he doesn't agree with*. Whoopty fricking do. Sorry mouser, I'm a bit surprised you actually linked to that one. Wink

- Oshyan
31  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Help me choose an online backup service on: October 30, 2012, 09:05:21 PM
I've been backing up my 2+TB of data online for more than a year now, so it's certainly possible. It wouldn't be without the "seeding" option though, which is why CrashPlan is one of the few workable services for my needs. Once the initial large data volume is seeded, even though I generate a lot of data regularly (5-25GB/wk, mostly photos), I can keep up just fine.

However I'm fortunate to have a broadband service with no data cap, and I've chosen it carefully in part for that reason. I know not everyone has the option, but sometimes if you research a bit there is indeed a possibility. A great example is Comcast regular consumer service is capped at 250GB, but the business class service is *not*. There is of course a price difference, but it's not near as bad as you might think.

- Oshyan
32  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Help me choose an online backup service on: October 30, 2012, 07:49:26 PM
I too continue to use CrashPlan, but remain frustrated with its high memory use and some other issues. The compelling factors in my case are different than mouser's. Unlike him I am in fact dealing with *lots* of data, over 2TB at this point. So I clearly need an unlimited service. That eliminates a number of options off the bat, and makes many others cost-prohibitive. This large data set causes 2 additional problems that further limit the field of options. First, in order to successfully backup 2TB of data "online", you need to either spend literally months uploading at a theoretical maximum speed (which as mouser points out, and we all know besides, is never realized in practice), or you need to have a physical drive sent to you to "seed" the backup. The latter option dramatically speeds the process and is essentially critical when dealing with more than 100-200GB of data, let alone 2TB+. On the other end of that issue, with *restore*, you likewise need a company that provides the service of sending you a recovery drive in the event of a failure, because who wants to be *downloading* 2TB of data to restore? So again this significantly limits my options. Thus any recommendation I could ever make about any service - CrashPlan or otherwise - must take these constraints into account and is therefore based on my particular needs which I grant are not necessarily common to many others.

Bottom line: if you have "big data", CrashPlan may be one of the few viable options, though it is far from ideal unfortunately. Personally I would hope to see truly native client versions of their backup engine in the future, with Qt-based cross-platform UI. This could accomplish similar cross-platform coherence while achieving much lower memory use (I believe) and higher efficiency.

P.S. Dunno if it has already been referenced or not, but here's a Wikipedia table of online backup options which can potentially narrow your options quickly when you're researching: http://en.wikipedia.org/w...of_online_backup_services

- Oshyan
33  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Another experiment in free software profit models from Bryan Lunduke on: July 06, 2012, 01:16:04 AM
A subject of ongoing interest here (for obvious reasons) is how developers can make money from free or practically free software. Bryan Lunduke has previously had some interesting things to say on this subject, his name has come up here before in related discussions, and he's been experimenting with various approaches for a while now.

Now he's trying a new approach to funding his software development efforts, which he lays out in this blog update: free source code (under the GPL), but only those that donate get compiled binaries. This has of course been thought of and tried before, but I suspect we'll learn more about how it all works out from following his updates from here on as he has tended to be pretty transparent about things. He's got a few other donator benefits thrown in to the mix as well, and I think he's got a reasonable chance of moderate success overall. But is that just due to his existing notoriety as a speaker and FOSS advocate, and building off the established name of his software company? Is this a model that new software devs have a chance with? It remains to be seen if even he will make it work, but I'm hopeful.

I imagine there will also be those who disagree with the idea, perhaps on the grounds that it's against the FOSS ethos, but it's interesting to note that this is coming from a pretty vocal FOSS advocate.

- Oshyan
34  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Software to make image collages, film strips, and other multi-image compositions on: July 05, 2012, 09:56:51 PM
Just found a surprisingly nice (simple but really flexible and easy to use) online app for this:
http://www.picmonkey.com/

While it doesn't meet *all* my needs, it handles the majority, and faster, easier, and more flexibly than Picasa or any other free desktop app I've tried.

- Oshyan
35  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: HTPC - Revisited - Input requested on: February 27, 2012, 05:40:58 PM
Why RAID? Why, god, why?

- Oshyan
36  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Google: Do no evil (once you're caught) on: February 27, 2012, 04:51:04 PM
I have to ask, once again, why isn't anyone talking about Instant Runoff Voting? I know it's OT for this thread, but it's been OT for a while. Wink

- Oshyan
37  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Anyone playing Mass Effect 2 game yet? on: February 18, 2012, 02:32:12 PM
Yeah, it's really ludicrous. I'm hopeful that they're learning their lesson from it and won't do the same in the future, but I wouldn't be surprised if this is the direction they want to go...

- Oshyan
38  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Anyone playing Mass Effect 2 game yet? on: February 17, 2012, 08:01:43 PM
You can't run BF3 directly, it always launches Origin, then loads a web page interface where you can select single, co-op, or multiplayer, which then loads the respective actual game instance. There's no easy way to launch single player directly, nor multi. The server browser is web-based and very poorly implemented. It requires a *browser plugin*. Both the browser plugin and Origin need to be updated on average at least once a week and you can't start a game until they are. Even when you do update them, sometimes it doesn't recognize it's been updated or doesn't auto-refresh, so it continues to not work. Sometimes even restarting the browser doesn't fix it. Chat and team management is horrendous and seldom works the first (or 2nd, or 3rd) time. Joining and leaving parties is confusing and error prone. I could go on and on. I suspect they integrated Origin and its various slimy tentacly components much more deeply in BF3 than the games you're referring to and not for the better.

- Oshyan
39  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Help me choose an online backup service on: February 16, 2012, 02:22:40 AM
Web-based backup is in my view not a very good option. It's going to be slow to do proper syncs, doesn't do versioning (granted this may not be a concern for you), and in fact many web hosts actually have policies against using their "unlimited space" plans for this purpose. So while you may get away with it for a while, you could also find your account suspended without warning and unable to access your backups.

Having written about this quite some time ago now, though admittedly I never followed-up with my full recommendations (damn me!), I'm surprised you haven't considered CrashPlan yet. That's what I use and overall I'm quite pleased with it. Unlimited backup space, reasonable pricing, good level of control, cross-platform, versioning, etc. And if you have lots of data to backup, it's one of the few that offers both a "seeding" service (they send you a drive that you load up with most of your data, then you don't need to upload it over your no-doubt-not-very-fat-outgoing-Internet-pipe), as well as an emergency recovery service (they send you a drive with your recovery data on it, instead of having to download 100s of GB over the wire). Both services cost extra, but are worth it for large data IMO. I backup 1.5TB with them right now. Also, though it may not be of interest if you already have backup software taking care of everything else, Crashplan does do local backup as well.

Edit: I don't know how S3 got this reputation of being cheap, but if you actually have large amounts of data, it's really, really not. I have 1.5TB of data. I pay CrashPlan $50/yr and it's unlimited, I have all 1.5TB up there now so I know it allows at least that much. According to this S3 calculator, just to store that much data at S3, much less transfer in and out any notable amount, it would cost me $135/mo for "reduced redundancy storage", more for full redundancy. Almost any of the other services, from Carbonite to Mozy to Humyo are cheaper for equivalent storage. S3 is nice due to its accessibility options, but for anything larger than a few 10s of GBs it's not really cost competitive in my view.

- Oshyan
40  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Anyone playing Mass Effect 2 game yet? on: February 16, 2012, 02:07:19 AM
Just in case you hadn't guessed, Origin is the biggest piece of shit ever. Yes, swearing is justified. I play Battlefield 3 and it's just... dear lord, atrocious.

- Oshyan
41  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Recommend some music videos to me! on: February 10, 2012, 03:53:23 PM
Nice find 40! That's one bad-ass big ol' bass!

- Oshyan
42  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Just like the MPAA didn't learn from the RIAA, the games industry is next on: February 10, 2012, 03:15:50 PM
Yes I was. But I've had a little time to think about it so I've modified my stance somewhat. (I'm not so full of myself that I'm unwilling to rethink my position or opinions.)
 tongue

But I still think it would be better not to buy any more than humanly possible until such time as we completely kill off the existing music and record industry. Because as long as they're around funding bad legislation, they will prevent my further suggestion (see below) from ever happening.

Hooray for the ability to intelligently debate, consider our perspective, and modify our opinions or approach if necessary. I think I can get behind your "minimal consumption" approach. smiley

- Oshyan
43  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: A nice bit of profanity from "Apple Scotland and Siri" (video) on: February 10, 2012, 02:54:59 PM
AWESOME!

- Oshyan
44  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: February 10, 2012, 02:42:23 PM
Haha! I had no idea there were so many Cthulhu parody videos. Nice.

- Oshyan
45  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Just like the MPAA didn't learn from the RIAA, the games industry is next on: February 10, 2012, 02:09:40 PM
Wait, 40hz, weren't you recently advocating *not buying anything* rather than buying from independents, as I suggested? Isn't that the opposite of "giving something back to the creatives"? cheesy

As for the roots of this problem, let us be clear, there will always be special interests and they will usually have money, and as long as money is involved in the political process it will bias the results towards moneyed interests. There are two possible solutions I see, one more effective than the other but also less likely.

That first approach is to literally remove money from the process, from life in general if possible, but (only slightly more realistically) at least from politics. This is about as likely as me flying around like superman. Even if you could get the system to outlaw campaign contributions, then you're just sending it underground; instead of public lists of who the biggest campaign contributors are as we now have, you have the same - or even larger - amounts of money going from god knows who to whatever politicians, in exchange for no doubt even firmer allegiances, all of it undocumented and untraceable. Remember that outlawing anything that people (or corporations, for that matter) really want to do never stops it, sometimes it even in strange ways encourages it. Look at prohibition or the modern drug war.

Anyway, failing that option, there is something you really *can* advocate for that can make a real difference and actually has a chance of happening. I'm going to put this in bold and underlined so people read it instead of my largely useless preamble above:

Instant Runoff Voting

Instant Runoff Voting is one of a number of alternative voting systems that have a statistically demonstrable and mathematically provable advantage in obtaining fair voting results. It is one of the single most important of possible reforms to any democracy that doesn't already use it. More important than campaign finance reform, more important than redistricting issues, electoral college reform, even Citizens United.

The single biggest threat to the effectiveness of our democracy is our (literally) broken method of electing leaders. Believe it or not it is actually statistically and mathematically demonstrable that a Plurality voting system like the US uses is one of the least fair and effective ways of electing candidates which the majority of voters desire. Think about that for a second. One of the most powerful nations on Earth uses one of the least effective voting methods!

This system has resulted in the widely lamented "2 party system" we have today, in which voting for a "3rd party" ("independent") is almost always seen as useless, "throwing your vote away". This is obviously a very dangerous attitude for the majority to have if we're to have any hope of change. It means that moneyed interests have fewer targets and a much easier time creating consensus for their interests. What we desperately need are more choices, a greater variety of options, diffusion in the political process such that money can concentrate less effectively, and candidates with differing views can at least have the possibility of winning major grass-roots support (which can be incredibly powerful - if there's anything we've learned from the likes of Kickstarter, not to mention the Obama campaign and more, it's that "the people" can really do a lot when inspired). Campaigns like Ralph Nader's have sadly and ironically actually reduced people's hope and desire for 3rd party candidates, because circumstantially many felt that votes for Nader cost Gore the presidency. This is just one example, but a relatively recent and powerful one. Imagine if Instant Runoff Voting, or at least some other more representational system, had existed at that time. The results would have been very different. Simply knowing that your *desires* will *always* be reflected in your vote can dramatically change *how* you vote. From fear-driven to aspirational, hope-driven voting.

The beauty of all this is that IRV has already been implemented in some local governments and has even come close to passing at the state level (Alaska, I believe). It will necessarily start small, just like this, but if we each support IRV or similar ranked voting options in our local and state governments, we can eventually move it up to a national policy vote. If IRV could be made national law for voting on our presidential, congressional, and gubernatorial candidates, I believe we would see a lot of change for the better. If nothing else we would know that the will of the people was being much better reflected, even if that will may manifest sadly in the realization that everyone is stupid after all. Wink

- Oshyan
46  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Recommend some music videos to me! on: February 05, 2012, 04:45:56 PM
Good stuff guys. I loves me some Tim Minchin. smiley

I saw Jonathan Coulton, who wrote "Still Alive", perform it live a few months back. Pretty awesome. smiley

- Oshyan
47  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Betanews.com - What was once a great site, is no longer on: January 29, 2012, 07:39:19 PM
I do likewise YoungJohn. Hooray for RSS! cheesy

- Oshyan
48  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: All-In-One Multi-Touch Computers - Thoughts? on: January 29, 2012, 07:13:14 PM
Well that's just lame, both on Win7's part and, IMO, on the monitor manufacturer's part as it sounds like they're doing some non-standard weirdness. Oh well.

- Oshyan
49  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Can U Say Crap-O-Riffic?? on: January 26, 2012, 03:51:22 PM
Damn, I should have mentioned TLER earlier. It did cross my mind... Well, at least you tracked it down.

- Oshyan
50  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: All-In-One Multi-Touch Computers - Thoughts? on: January 26, 2012, 03:23:40 PM
Can't you just use generic display drivers for those monitors?

- Oshyan
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