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Last post Author Topic: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !  (Read 62504 times)

TaoPhoenix

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #25 on: October 22, 2013, 01:31 PM »
It's a matter of terminology really. To each his own. For example, I disagree that compression is an expected part of backup. Nor do I think that Restore should be a built-in app's function, especially if it"s essentially a thinly veiled basic file copy. I hear you that many people were led to believe that a backup without compression is not a "proper" backup, but that's not a reason enough for me to play along. This tendency to compete on the length of a feature list is very unfortunate.

I think this is a trickier topic than it sounds. It chains a bit to your earlier remark about my theme.
"Submit a bug report for an unreleased theme to Microsoft - do I expect them to do anything? No."

But for these smaller apps, having the dev put in features feels to me like an important process, because it can change a user's opinion of the developer.

I "specialize" in these smaller apps, and I get a good feeling when a dev can put in a requested feature vs the old school top down "you'll take our features and like them! (And Like them on Facebook!)

See that thread about horrible upgrades!

So for example if the program can "hot feed" into an already zipped folder, then it ends up compressed and that's fine by me.

Restore might be a little more tricky.


TaoPhoenix

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #26 on: October 22, 2013, 01:40 PM »
Bvckup is not a system backup, it's a data backup. The principal difference is that it is not aware of things like bootable sector, MBR and other file system elements that are not files, but that are required for a successful OS boot-up. So while you can backup entire C:\, it will not give you a bootable image.

Basically the use-case for Bvckup is that of backing up your precious data, but not the program files or drivers or DLLs. Then, if the source collapses, you'd reinstall the OS and all the apps and then restore app's data from the backup created with Bvckup.

Hmm. Then I think I need a second program that operates at some kind of "image level". Suppose I have over a hundred big apps and two hundred small ones on my comp! I want some kind of "12 click restore whole image" type program where it copies over C/Program Files and wherever else components end up (registry sync? C/Windows32?) and voila all 300 apps are back.

Then separately an entire image capture level backup, so it's like the three bears of backups : )


tomos

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #27 on: October 22, 2013, 01:47 PM »
So for example if the program can "hot feed" into an already zipped folder, then it ends up compressed and that's fine by me.

Restore might be a little more tricky.

'"hot feed" into an already zipped folder' sounds good to me.

Re the requests:
I think it's a case of who you're aiming your product at. I personally prefer a backup programme that is "essentially a thinly veiled basic file copy" as apankrat says - and that "restore" be simply a case of navigating to the backup folder/file and copying to wherever I want to use it. I rarely restore to the original location.

OTOH I might have other feature requests :-[
Tom

tomos

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #28 on: October 22, 2013, 01:50 PM »
Hmm. Then I think I need a second program that operates at some kind of "image level". Suppose I have over a hundred big apps and two hundred small ones on my comp! I want some kind of "12 click restore whole image" type program where it copies over C/Program Files and wherever else components end up (registry sync? C/Windows32?) and voila all 300 apps are back.

Then separately an entire image capture level backup, so it's like the three bears of backups : )

A lot of people keep the OS and data on seperate partitions/drives - then you just need a data backup and an image backup of the OS partition.
Tom

Jibz

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #29 on: October 22, 2013, 02:02 PM »
I seem to remember we've discussed the name before -- I think "backup" gives people some associations about features like restore, compression, etc. As I understand it, what Bvckup does is one-way sync, which can be used for simple backups.

It's a matter of terminology really. To each his own. For example, I disagree that compression is an expected part of backup. Nor do I think that Restore should be a built-in app's function, especially if it"s essentially a thinly veiled basic file copy. I hear you that many people were led to believe that a backup without compression is not a "proper" backup, but that's not a reason enough for me to play along. This tendency to compete on the length of a feature list is very unfortunate.

Personally I think there is definitely a use case for one-way sync used as backup, and I commend you for sticking to doing one thing really well, instead of adding all the features other backup software has :up:.

TaoPhoenix

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #30 on: October 22, 2013, 02:06 PM »
Personally I think there is definitely a use case for one-way sync used as backup, and I commend you for sticking to doing one thing really well, instead of adding all the features other backup software has :up:.

Plus I "chain" programs. So it might be okay if this dev doesn't burn say 1000 hours putting in Restore if any of 3 other programs can do it.

I put a separation when "this dev is available" and puts in a *custom feature* that *no one else has*. Then that makes the program special! That is why I do ask for context how hard a feature is - if he can do it in like 20 hours that's one thing, vs "let's invent this entire thing called an automobile from scratch" ... well, okay, that wish doesn't get filled today!

:-*


apankrat

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #31 on: October 22, 2013, 02:17 PM »

You misunderstand what the delta copying is and I guess the explanation I have in the Backup Config window should be reworded -
 (see attachment in previous post)
Delta copying doesn't copy deltas and store them in a separate file. It copies them into the existing backup copy. Think of it as a selective, per-block update of the backup copy. Performance-wise it makes no difference on the first run, but on the second run in vast majority of cases it delivers significant speed up (over copying file in its entirety).

I'm not so sure that I am. Copy Files In Full creates "snapshots" in a point in time, right?

Correct, but so does the delta copying.

Say you have C:\Temp\file.ext and you set it to be backed up to X:\Backup.
You run the backup first time, it creates X:\Backup\file.ext. An exact copy.

Then you go and edit C:\Temp\file.ext, change something in it.
You run the backup second time. It updates X:\Backup\file.ext and again it becomes an exact copy of C:\Temp\file.ext.

This happens regardless of whether you are using the full or the delta copier. The "full/delta" differences affects *how* the file is updated, but the net effect is the same - the backup copy becomes an exact replica of the original. Think of it as a performance optimization that allows the backup complete faster, but doesn't affect what's actually being done to the backup.

Does this make sense?
Alex

apankrat

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #32 on: October 22, 2013, 02:24 PM »
@apankrat: the logs look so nice and easy compared to your average log :-*

I agree :-)

Query (similar to one in previous post) -
does it do versioning? (with apologies if stated above - have been following the events, but not very closely...)

It doesn't do versioning, but here are my thoughts on this.

I firmly believe that versioning needs to be done in a way that doesn't lock file history to specific software. This means that the version archive format needs to be open and documented. This in turn means that I should either invent and document such format (but then someone else will need to code alternative tools to work with it) -or- I can adopt an existing format.

Can you guess where this is going? ... 3,2,1 ... That's right - it should use Git :-)

So the plan as it stands is to get the V2 on the road first and then to tackle file versioning.
Alex

apankrat

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #33 on: October 22, 2013, 02:34 PM »
It's a matter of terminology really. To each his own. For example, I disagree that compression is an expected part of backup. Nor do I think that Restore should be a built-in app's function, especially if it"s essentially a thinly veiled basic file copy. I hear you that many people were led to believe that a backup without compression is not a "proper" backup, but that's not a reason enough for me to play along. This tendency to compete on the length of a feature list is very unfortunate.

I think this is a trickier topic than it sounds. It chains a bit to your earlier remark about my theme.
"Submit a bug report for an unreleased theme to Microsoft - do I expect them to do anything? No."

Just to close this particular issue - you are using a theme that wasn't released or is supported officially, that causes a common control not to be painted correctly and then somehow it should be me working around this issue in my program. Sorry, this makes little sense. Admittedly, in certain cases devs do work around other people's problems, but these are singular high-impact cases (like having a setup package mis-detected as a trojan by Symantec) and they are rare exceptions.

But for these smaller apps, having the dev put in features feels to me like an important process, because it can change a user's opinion of the developer.

I made a lot of changes in 5 months that the app sat in private beta. But I never add features just because they are easy to do and somebody asked for them. This is a design by a committee and it is a ROAD TO HELL. Retaining app's focus is really hard and it involves both (a) knowing what it is and (b) saying No on a regular basis.
Alex

apankrat

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #34 on: October 22, 2013, 02:36 PM »
Personally I think there is definitely a use case for one-way sync used as backup, and I commend you for sticking to doing one thing really well, instead of adding all the features other backup software has :up:.

Commendation well received, thank you :-)
Alex

tomos

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #35 on: October 22, 2013, 03:21 PM »
I firmly believe that versioning needs to be done in a way that doesn't lock file history to specific software. This means that the version archive format needs to be open and documented. This in turn means that I should either invent and document such format (but then someone else will need to code alternative tools to work with it) -or- I can adopt an existing format.

Can you guess where this is going? ... 3,2,1 ... That's right - it should use Git :-)

So the plan as it stands is to get the V2 on the road first and then to tackle file versioning.

I'm not sure what exactly you mean there by "file history", but this sounds very interesting!
I've been tempted to use some sort of DVCS but it seems to me that the learning curve/overhead is too much for regular files (e.g. graphics) - yet, I'm very dissatisfied with the alternatives. I use Filehamster, saving a comment with each save (it's *mostly* dependable, with a lot of potential - but the developers show little interest). Also use SFFS (Syncovery) which can do a silent revision of each save (works very well, but I miss the ability to 'comment').
Tom

tomos

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #36 on: October 22, 2013, 03:30 PM »

You misunderstand what the delta copying is and I guess the explanation I have in the Backup Config window should be reworded -
 (see attachment in previous post)
Delta copying doesn't copy deltas and store them in a separate file. It copies them into the existing backup copy. Think of it as a selective, per-block update of the backup copy. Performance-wise it makes no difference on the first run, but on the second run in vast majority of cases it delivers significant speed up (over copying file in its entirety).

I'm not so sure that I am. Copy Files In Full creates "snapshots" in a point in time, right?

Correct, but so does the delta copying.

Just to be 100% clear: both create a snapshot, which gets modified as your files gets modified. It doesnt create a new snapshot at each backup. [Just in case the "snapshots" query was also about some form of versioning.]
Tom

TaoPhoenix

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #37 on: October 23, 2013, 12:47 AM »
Say you have C:\Temp\file.ext and you set it to be backed up to X:\Backup.
You run the backup first time, it creates X:\Backup\file.ext. An exact copy.

Then you go and edit C:\Temp\file.ext, change something in it.
You run the backup second time. It updates X:\Backup\file.ext and again it becomes an exact copy of C:\Temp\file.ext.

This happens regardless of whether you are using the full or the delta copier. The "full/delta" differences affects *how* the file is updated, but the net effect is the same - the backup copy becomes an exact replica of the original. Think of it as a performance optimization that allows the backup complete faster, but doesn't affect what's actually being done to the backup.

Does this make sense?

Sort of, except it seems you are making the use case that I only want one backup and to keep it current. I don't! I like having the redundancy protection of several snapshots in Backup1, Backup2, Backup3. Plus it captures "the state of the union at the time". So because I am a scatter brained bird, looking at say the June snapshot reminds me that I was heavily into some topic, and all the files are there. In one of the current snapshots they are likely to get all "bound up in a batch and parked" whereas in the earlier snapshot they'd be laid out conceptually in the workflow order. In a perfect world I'd include a screenshot of the desktop because I use horozontal-vertical layout on the desktop as part of the workflow to indicate progress status of an incomplete project component and as the "to do" reminder in the Get Things Done type systems.

Somehow it just makes me feel that all of that disappears with Deltas unless you have "perfect rollback to any point in time to recreate that day's files. Can your deltas do that?


TaoPhoenix

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #38 on: October 23, 2013, 12:49 AM »
Can you guess where this is going? ... 3,2,1 ... That's right - it should use Git :-)

So the plan as it stands is to get the V2 on the road first and then to tackle file versioning.

Hehe snapshots are my "my eyes! it hurtz!" method of versioning as well!

 :D

TaoPhoenix

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #39 on: October 23, 2013, 12:51 AM »

You misunderstand what the delta copying is and I guess the explanation I have in the Backup Config window should be reworded -
 (see attachment in previous post)
Delta copying doesn't copy deltas and store them in a separate file. It copies them into the existing backup copy. Think of it as a selective, per-block update of the backup copy. Performance-wise it makes no difference on the first run, but on the second run in vast majority of cases it delivers significant speed up (over copying file in its entirety).

I'm not so sure that I am. Copy Files In Full creates "snapshots" in a point in time, right?

Correct, but so does the delta copying.

Just to be 100% clear: both create a snapshot, which gets modified as your files gets modified. It doesnt create a new snapshot at each backup. [Just in case the "snapshots" query was also about some form of versioning.]

It doesn't get modified if you change the destination folder for the second snapshot! That's perhaps the unstated trick that I use and intend behind my comments.


apankrat

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #40 on: October 23, 2013, 02:01 AM »
Just to be 100% clear: both create a snapshot, which gets modified as your files gets modified. It doesnt create a new snapshot at each backup. [Just in case the "snapshots" query was also about some form of versioning.]

That's correct. It does not create new snapshot on every run, it updates the one created on the first run.
Alex

Jibz

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #41 on: October 23, 2013, 02:09 AM »
Somehow it just makes me feel that all of that disappears with Deltas unless you have "perfect rollback to any point in time to recreate that day's files. Can your deltas do that?

Try to think about Bvckup as a one-way sync app instead of a backup app.

Terminology like snapshots and deltas usually mean other things in backup software, but in the case of Bvckup, there is only one "snapshot" which is the last sync, and there is no delta encoding involved, it does "delta copy" which just means it copies only the blocks of a file that have changed while doing a sync.

One solution to get multiple snapshots would be to do like in the screenshots, and create a daily job that syncs to a folder called daily, and a weekly that syncs to a folder called weekly. That way, even if you screw up the daily snapshot, you have a weekly to fall back to.

Another simple option would be if apenkrat added support for adding a timedate stamp to the destination folder, so each time the job runs it syncs to a new folder.

But of course, using something like git content tracking would give a lot more options.

Jibz

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #42 on: November 12, 2013, 03:01 AM »
Finally had a chance to try it :-*. Here are a few random thoughts:

Usually there is a button to exit the installer without running the program, here the only option is to start the program.

When I pressed the Run Bvckup button at the end of the installer, it ran the program, but the window didn't come to the front. It was hidden behind my browser, and I had to click the icon in the task bar to bring it to the front.

For missed backups under periodic backup, perhaps an option to ask me if the backup should run now or wait?

Also, some people might want to schedule backups to run say Sunday night at 2 AM, it's possible to do this by selecting first backup to run Sunday night and setting the interval to 1 week, but perhaps there could be a more intuitive way?

I loathe the default Windows choose a folder dialog -- it's tiny, has little options, starts with all paths collapsed. Would it be possible to use the choose a file dialog instead like many programs do?

Perhaps a button on the main interface to show/hide the log instead of having to go into the Options menu?

An option to not show seconds once more than a minute or two have passed since last backup? I find the ticking seconds distracting on the interface.

Impression so far: Very nice UI and seems to work well.

apankrat

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #43 on: November 12, 2013, 07:04 AM »
Thanks, Jibz.

The installer can be closed with (x) if you don't want to run the program, though I just went by my own experience and assumed that very rarely people would want to install, but not run the app.

App window getting stuck behind others - thanks, fixed.

Missed backups - there's an option for that (sans the "ask" part) - http://bvckup2.com/wip/#04102013

Sunday backups - I would rather not over-complicate the UI to cater to people who can't figure it out just the way you did it. Consider it a natural selection to cut down on the support costs :)

The Browse window - I hear you and I will be redoing it shortly. Though I am so NOT looking forward to it. But regarding the file dialog - got an example?

The Log open/close button - just give it few days. Existing arrangement will grow on you. I had the button initially, because it seemed to make sense, but then realized I never actually used it.

Seconds - If I remove them after 5 minute mark, will that be better? As it is, they will get hidden once it gets over an hour.

--

By the way, spot anything familiar? - http://bvckup2.com/wip/#24052013
Alex

Jibz

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #44 on: November 12, 2013, 07:52 AM »
Missed backups - there's an option for that (sans the "ask" part) - http://bvckup2.com/wip/#04102013

The Browse window - I hear you and I will be redoing it shortly. Though I am so NOT looking forward to it. But regarding the file dialog - got an example?

For instance SourceTree, when I click one of the '...' buttons to select a folder, I get a dialog like the one to select files, but one that lets me select a folder:

openfoldersample.png

The Log open/close button - just give it few days. Existing arrangement will grow on you. I had the button initially, because it seemed to make sense, but then realized I never actually used it.

Ok, I'll see how it goes ;D.

Seconds - If I remove them after 5 minute mark, will that be better? As it is, they will get hidden once it gets over an hour.

Sounds better yes. The reason I mention it was that I noticed, with the window open, that the changing seconds kept getting my attention and I checked the window even though there was no real change.

By the way, spot anything familiar? - http://bvckup2.com/wip/#24052013

I like your font :-[ .. btw, I notice the bwckup in the header guard -- was the use of double-v a codename for bvckup 2?

TaoPhoenix

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #45 on: November 12, 2013, 08:45 AM »
...
One solution to get multiple snapshots would be to do like in the screenshots, and create a daily job that syncs to a folder called daily, and a weekly that syncs to a folder called weekly. That way, even if you screw up the daily snapshot, you have a weekly to fall back to.

Sure, and my sync needs are very simple so I don't even do it monthly. "When I get bored" every few months or sometimes years is sorta my theme - because of all the "Cloudiness" of everything, I don't really mind losing a month's stuff of random notes. Just not to lose all of everything, ever. So because I for example already have that test sync done, because of the way I "collate and batch" stuff almost like "filed by month", I don't need 12 copies of my complete desktop - maybe two or three is fine, then I just drag "this month's folder" via boring old "drag and drop".

The first sync was just because I had no idea where anything was, so power-synced it. But new stuff would have to only be in like ten places. 


apankrat

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #46 on: November 12, 2013, 04:23 PM »

The Browse window - I hear you and I will be redoing it shortly. Though I am so NOT looking forward to it. But regarding the file dialog - got an example?

For instance SourceTree, when I click one of the '...' buttons to select a folder, I get a dialog like the one to select files, but one that lets me select a folder:
 (see attachment in previous post)

Would you look at that ... apparently it's a standard Windows dialog, just a (much) less popular one.
Here's a code for it just in case if anyone else needs it - http://code.msdn.microsoft.com/CppShellCommonFileDialog-17b20409

By the way, spot anything familiar? - http://bvckup2.com/wip/#24052013
I like your font :-[ .. btw, I notice the bwckup in the header guard -- was the use of double-v a codename for bvckup 2?

I like your font too! :)

bwckup - yeah, it's an internal name. w = v+v = v2. It didn't work as a release name though - I ran a poll on the mailing list and lots of people said it sounded like aww or eww. Though technically either one is unpronounceable ... heh.
Alex

Jibz

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #47 on: November 16, 2013, 03:39 AM »
If any moderators would prefer I post stuff like this on bvckup's own forum please let me know, right now it's just easier not to have to sign up and figure out one more place :-[.

In the What to backup dialog, could there be a way to duplicate a rule so it's easier to create multiple similar rules?

Is there a way to exclude, say, files larger than 10 MB? I can only make rules for name and attributes I think.

Is there a way to edit the default set of rules? I may have some rules I would like to apply to multiple backups.

Would it be helpful with checkboxes next to the rules so they can be easily turned on/off?

apankrat

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #48 on: November 18, 2013, 01:57 AM »
In the What to backup dialog, could there be a way to duplicate a rule so it's easier to create multiple similar rules?

Noted, let me think about it.

Is there a way to exclude, say, files larger than 10 MB? I can only make rules for name and attributes I think.

No, not at the moment. Is this really needed? I'm guessing this stems from the need to skip over very large files, in which case they can typically be excluded by name, no?

Is there a way to edit the default set of rules? I may have some rules I would like to apply to multiple backups.

I am adding an option to edit backup defaults (i.e. a template for new backups).

Would it be helpful with checkboxes next to the rules so they can be easily turned on/off?

This I will not do. This is mostly static part of the configuration. A vast majority of people will configure it once and never touch it again, meaning that these checkboxes will just simply add noise to the UI and won't benefit that many users. It's a niche feature that optimizes very specific and rare usage scenario and as such I don't think it belongs to the UI.
Alex

Chris

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Re: Bvckup 2 is in open beta !
« Reply #49 on: December 11, 2013, 01:51 AM »
I am using the current beta and find it very good. I only want copies of files; not compressed files, so I have very easy retrieval. I use 2 type of backup; one is instantaneous to a second hard drive in the PC and second to a USB connected drive. This gives "instant" backup as well as a weekly snapshot.

The one feature that is missing BUT is promised is some form of version control. This will greatly improve the program for me.

Bvckup is a great tool, but it is not my only strategy to save my data.

I look forward to further versions.

Chris

Chris Harris
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