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Apparent mirroring failure, need to understand the cause

SyncBackFree is the freeware version of SyncBack. It is *not* an evaluation version of SyncBackPro/SE.
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Joined: Mon Jun 05, 2017 3:37 pm

Apparent mirroring failure, need to understand the cause

Post by jhsachs »

I've been using SyncBackFree to synchronize my laptop and desktop computers for about a year, and have had no problems. Today it very nearly wiped out a week of work by overwriting new files with old ones. I urgently need to find out how this happened and do whatever is necessary to prevent another such incident.

On both machines I'm using v7.6.28.0 for Windows. I'm aware that more recent versions are available, but I have not updated it on the principle that "if it ain't broke, don't fix it." If the problem I'm having is fixed in a later version, I'll update now.

Here's my procedure: I have two SyncBackFree jobs on each computer, one to mirror files from the computer to a portable hard disk, and the other to mirror files back. Before the weekend I run the "computer to portable" job on the desktop, then the "portable to computer" job on the laptop. After the weekend I do the reverse.

Today I started the "portable to computer" job on the desktop, but the list of changed files seemed much too big, and included files that I didn't think I had touched over the weekend. I investigated further, and found that:
  • I mirrored the desktop to the portable drive on 6/01 at 4:30 PM.
    I mirrored the portable drive to the laptop on 6/01 at 4:36 PM.
    I mirrored the laptop to the portable drive on 6/04 at 4:46 PM.
    Nevertheless, there were many files on the portable drive whose timestamps matched the laptop (last changed 5/19) instead of the desktop (last changed 5/31).
    Files that I did update over the weekend were mirrored correctly.
I see only one way this could have happened: At some point SyncBackFree failed to mirror an entire batch of files, leaving old versions on the portable disk when updated versions were on the computer.
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