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How to identify "orphaned" files in backup set

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John Riley
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How to identify "orphaned" files in backup set

Post by John Riley »

If the profile specifies that a file on the destination should be deleted if it is deleted on the source, then the file is deleted on the destination if it does not exist on the source.

But if that file has versions, the versions are not deleted but stay in the backup set. (for this discussion I am calling versions of files that exist without a current file "orphans." Not sure if there is a better name.) More generically, I am thinking that an "orphan" is any file that will remain in the backup set until manually removed even if there are purging rules set.

I have a few questions related to this:

1. Is there any way to easily identify files in the backup set that have versions stored but not a current file?

2. Is there a way to exclude files from versioning either at the folder or file level?

3. Are there cases where other kinds of "orphan" type files are created and if so any way to find them in the backup set?

One reason for the question is that after a while there may be a lot of files in the backup set that are orphans and not needed. Would be nice if there was an easy way to list them and clean them up... else I think they just sit there forever, maybe forgotten about and are sort of out of the backup loop.
John Riley
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Re: How to identify "orphaned" files in backup set

Post by John Riley »

I should mention that I understand why versions of deleted files are preserved. I think that is the proper method of dealing with that situation because you may later need the versions even though the file was deleted. So it's the correct conservative approach. But at the same time it potentially leaves a lot of files that may not be needed that don't show up anywhere and may take up unnecessary space. So I am wondering if there is a better way to deal with that issue.
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