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newbie-can I recover from PACK?

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  • newbie-can I recover from PACK?

    I have a client who uses Alpha4 to do mailings to his customers. He deleted a bunch of his data, and then packed it, and now wants to recover what he deleted.

    He has no current backup, is running Alpha Four on DOS, and does have norton installed. Do we have any options, or are we up a creek?


  • #2
    RE: newbie-can I recover from PACK?

    Once you pack, the data is gone from your data file for good. Without a backup, there's no way for you to get it back. It usually takes this type of hard lesson for someone to learn the importance of keeping current backups. He's actually quite lucky that he only lost a portion of his data and not all of it like he would have in the case of something like a hard drive failure.


    Lenny Forziati
    Vice President, Internet Products and Technical Services
    Alpha Software Corporation


    • #3
      RE: newbie-can I recover from PACK?

      Good backups are important.
      You should also teach him how to reformat a floppy with the /U parameter to get a full format which tests the media with a low level format and reports any bad sectors. If he uses the backup feature of Alpha Four, it formats floppies but also writes to any bad sectors, so you need to have 100% good media with no bad sectors on it for backups.

      He should go through the whole loop of restoring the data to another location and reading it to see if its good. You may want to keep an application backup for him too. Restoring the data makes for a complete disaster drill.

      For quickie backups he can copy to the hard drive before running dangerous commands like pack. Do remind him that his hard drive will die some day too.



      • #4
        RE: newbie-can I recover from PACK?

        If he doesn't want to back up he can install a raid card and put in a second ide drive. Then he can always have redundant copies of the whole drive. If one fails, just change a jumper. This still won't help if he deletes a file or packs, but with a raid drive he can use the hard drive itself for backup. That will protect from most things short of lightning taking out the whole thing or theft of the computer.
        To protect against these a backup, preferably kept off site it the best protection.
        We use a tape backup and continually rotate them so we can always go back if necessary. It's saved my butt on numerous occasions.



        • #5
          RE: newbie-can I recover from PACK?

          One other thought. If in order to pack Alpha copies the database and then renames --- which would do what a pack does. The it might be able to access the original using Norton recover. I guess it would depend on the sequence alpha uses to pack. If the old one was renamed before the new one was renamed then something might be there. Also if the data is valuable enough a data recovery service might be able to get it back - but at great expense.



          • #6
            RE: newbie-can I recover from PACK?

            Yes there is a way to recover, (maybe)

            I believe there is one option that should recover all the data (In fact I KNOW it will), but you have to be careful.
            If your client had the program "GOBACK" installed and running when he packed the DB. Using goback will return everything on the computer to a state it was befor.

            In order for this to work, you must know how far back you want to go. For example:
            (1) You did the packing on 7/28/02 at 9am in the morning.
            (2) This means you can can GOBACK to some date and time
            before you did the packing, and bring your system back
            to where it was then.
            (3) So, you could go back to 7/28/02 at 8am.
            or, it might be better (and required) to goback to
            7/27/02 {any time}. The program (goback) allows you to
            input the date and time you want to go back to.
            (4) GOBACK is not designed to "goback" for the reason you need it, but it will do so. Just make sure you know what you are doing. By the way, if one "goback" DOESNOT work you can goback to an earlier date and/or time.

            (5) Even if this works (or doesnot), from now on; BACKUP,
            BACKUP, BACKUP, BACKUP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!