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corby 03-13-2008 03:21 PM

hanging on open file?

I have a scheduled nightly smart backup job. I also have VM Fusion and run a virtual machine.

Sometimes the VM is running when the scheduled job kicks off. When this happens, it appears that SD! hangs, but the log doesn't give enough info on why it hangs. It shows the top level folder (/user or /home, I can't remember as I am not there at the moment.....regardless, it's the top level directory where the VM is stored).

Even if I close out the VM, it seems like SD doesn't continue. The VM is only about 17GB, so I don't expect that it would take very long to backup over FireWire 400.

After closing the VM and stopping SD, I am able to restart the backup and everything works fine.

So, I am wondering:

1) How does SD! deal with open files? Can it skip the file and continue with the rest of the backup.

2) If it's stuck on an open file, should closing that file allow SD to continue?

3) what about other open files? Suppose I have an app running with an open document. I haven't tested this yet, but I hope that wouldn't cause SD to hang because of an open document.

Thanks for any advice

dnanian 03-13-2008 06:25 PM

Files that are not "flushed" or might be extended while we're copying them will not copy properly. In general, you should absolutely not run VMWare, Parallels, Virtual PC, Entourage, BitTorrent or similar programs while backing up.

corby 03-13-2008 07:20 PM

Ok. I do understand that backing up a file that's in use or changing will be a problem for that particular file. But should the backup get stuck or hang when it comes across that file?

I normally would close down everything, but once in awhile, I might be doing something when the scheduled backup starts up. (That's what happened to me yesterday)

Is SD supposed to gracefully deal with the open file and and skip it and continue with the rest of the backup?


dnanian 03-14-2008 12:06 AM

Most open files are fine, actually. Files that are being extended trigger a bug in OSX's file copy code, and the file tends to copy until the destination fills. (See the Troubleshooting section of the User's Guide.)

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