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Old 06-09-2006, 11:21 AM
avex avex is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 2
SuperDuper! erased my data during smart update

Hi All,

This is a tale that hopefully might save someone out there from having their data wiped. Here is my story.

I loved the look of superduper and after tinkling for a bit decided to purchase it. Previously I used CCC but it never worked right for me after upgrading to Tiger.

My laptop's external backup drive was also used to keep an archive of 150GB's of files from the last 10 years that would not fit on my powerbook's drive. The files were in a separate folder called "archive".

I chose to do the smart update. I read through the forum and skimmed the manual looking for tips and it looked like the right thing for me. I read some notices about copying and erasing files in the GUI, but I assumed that the out of sync files were deleted. After I hit "copy now" i happily watched as the drive was backed up.

After it was all done, and to my absolute shock I realised my "archive" folder had been deleted. I cannot describe that intensely sick feeling in the pit of your stomach.

What I did not realise was that when superduper does a smart update for the first time everything from the target drive get erased. Since the wording was "copy and erase" i knew things were deleted, but I thought this would only be the files that had vanished off my laptop.

Also, when I did the same process in CCC it always kept the "archive" folder untouched *and* allowed for a bootable backup.

Superduper does not allow a backup and archive to exist on the same partition.

Looking back to see where I went wrong I believe the text in the GUI is ambiguous. Usually when anything will be erased there is a very noticeable warning. My feeling is that because superduper strives to be so friendly and easy to use it glossed over important details and buries it in a paragraph of text.

This following screen should say very clearly "THE BACKUP DRIVE WILL BE ERASED"


To me, wording it "copy and erase" makes me think it adds files, and then deletes files that are not on the computer you are backing up, rather than erasing *everything* that is not actually on your hard drive.

Straight after it happened I panicked and IM'd the developer who was helpful in methods to try to recover the data. We spent a lot of time on IM, and for that I am very grateful. (Unfortunately, I lost 100% of the files)

So, I am posting this as a message for other's new to superduper new users to look out for, and hopefully as a way to have the wording changed to make it unequivocally 100% clear. I hope nobody else has to lose their important data.
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