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Arrgh - how do I restore external backup?

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Arrgh - how do I restore external backup?

Postby SPOinNS » Thu Apr 27, 2017 12:23 pm

Well, I've come to terms with the need to do a factory reset to add a 4th HDD to my existing 3 HDD RAID 5 volume. I don't pretend to understand why it has to be done this way. I'm at the mercy of Tech Support and that is their recommendation.

Thanks to Kapitein Haak for his info on my previous post about this dreary adventure.

I used ADM/Backup & Restore/External Backup to backup my data to an external USB drive. I also backed up my System Settings.

Before taking the irrevocable step of a factory reset and wiping out my data and settings, I can't seem to find how to restore that external backup to the NAS. It's probably right in front of me but I can't find it spelled out in ADM/Backup & Restore options.

No doubt I'm suffering from a case of the stupids but I plead ADM burnout. What should have been a very simple NAS function - add a 4th disk to an existing RAID 5 - has turned into a baffling waste of time that has spanned days and days and added hundreds of runtime hours to my disks.

Can someone point me in the right direction to restore a backup from external USB -> NAS? I've looked through the Asustor College lessons but can't find an appropriate one.

Is there a preference for order of restore: System Settings followed by External Backup or the other way around?

Thanks for any help provided. I'm going to go bang my head on the wall for a while...
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Re: Arrgh - how do I restore external backup?

Postby orion » Fri Apr 28, 2017 11:05 am

The backup function can actually restore data back. However, I think it's not intuitive enough. If you do restore function with default settings, it will create different directory structure. You'll need to enable "1 on 1 folder synchronization" to keep the directory structure. Note: it will remove all new files on the destination (i.e., to keep exactly the same files / directories on destination as the source).

You should restore data back first, then restore system settings. (I'm not sure if ACL settings will be restored or not. I did not enable it.) Oh, you'll need to re-install applications.
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Re: Arrgh - how do I restore external backup?

Postby SPOinNS » Fri Apr 28, 2017 12:29 pm

Thanks Orion. I wouldn't have known that was how to preserve my directory structure without that advice.

I asked Tech Support for explicit instructions on restoring a NAS from an external backup. When I get them I will consider my current open ticket closed.

I also suggested restoring from backup as an Asustor College module. Documentation isn't particularly fun or sexy but often it is a critical piece of the usability puzzle. In my circumstance it would have helped to know what options mean what when setting up the backup job. Realizing that you should have set a particular option before running the backup job isn't much good when the backup is finished and your original data is wiped.

I wish Asustor participated in the forums a bit more. Don't they realize how many tech support tickets are avoided or closed because of forum dialogs?
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Re: Arrgh - how do I restore external backup?

Postby MikeG.6.5 » Fri Apr 28, 2017 1:30 pm

SPOinNS wrote:I wish Asustor participated in the forums a bit more. Don't they realize how many tech support tickets are avoided or closed because of forum dialogs?


No, they don't. Or there would be Asustor employees on these forums as much as there are people like @orion and myself. (And a few others.) Sad that customers are the company voice on any company forums... :(

PS. And yes, in case you hadn't noticed it, I'm a moderator and still voice negatives about how Asustor does support through these forums. (Or doesn't, as the case may be.)
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Re: Arrgh - how do I restore external backup?

Postby SPOinNS » Fri Apr 28, 2017 1:50 pm

For what it's worth I sent a link to this thread to my open ticket. I don't have much confidence in it getting read but you gotta keep trying.

My impression of Asustor is that of a company that builds high quality hardware, mediocre software and doesn't like to spend money or time on documentation or forum participation.

My interactions with Tech Support have always left me impressed. Not always satisfied but impressed none the less.

They also strike me as aggressively conservative. I don't think there is a burning drive to innovate but maybe that's not so important in this market.

My thanks as always to the regular contributors and mods. That this place works at all is down to your efforts.
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Re: Arrgh - how do I restore external backup?

Postby steamship » Fri May 12, 2017 7:42 pm

Did you ever get proper instructions on how to do the restore, other than what Orion stated above?

I had a similar issue in that I run a RAID0 setup and added two more drives, which necessitated deleting the array and restoring from my backups. I searched and searched and couldn't find the restore option.

As Orion states, the External Backup allows you to do a restore. What you need to do is create a new Backup job. On the very first popup screen you have two options:

Your NAS -> External device
External device -> Your NAS

By default, the first one is selected. You need to select the second one. At this stage, you have to think along the lines of you are backing up your external device to the NAS. It's a bit naff, but once you figure out how it works, it's plain sailing. I just ensured that I named the Backup job with something appropriate like 'Restore Files...'.

You would think that they would name the Backup option as Backup/Restore and that when you select the second option, it would change the text accordingly to avoid confusion.
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Re: Arrgh - how do I restI'llore external backup?

Postby SPOinNS » Sat May 13, 2017 8:28 am

I ended up taking Orion's advice and everything worked as it should.

Asustor never responded to my suggestions but it seems they don't like listening to user input. I'll never understand a company that ignores user input and doesn't participate in their own forums.

It's obvious that most important performance measurement for Customer Service is tickets closed. Period. That is why the only way to get useful feedback from Asustor is by opening a ticket. It's a terribly monolithic approach to measuring Customer Service but I empathize with people whose pay cheques and bonuses depend on tickets closed. They're never going to have much time to deviate from their established CS procedures.

The whole exercise of restoring my backup was fraught with unnecessary tension. I kept feeling that I was one keystroke away from obliterating my data. All because Asustor won't take the time or trouble to clarify their documentation. This isn't a code issue, it's a clear and precise instructions issue. So simple and inexpensive to correct you'd think.

Your nicely detailed description of the process is now part of the forum and this thread is currently a users best hope for clarification in a similar situation.
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