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Convert a Full Backup to an Incremental one

Posted: Thu Dec 02, 2021 8:41 pm
by jstav
Hi,

Is there any "easy" way to convert an existing full backup to an incremental one?

Our use case is this, we have a large base OS image (say 7gb) that we put onto many PC's which we then customize some software on (changing say 300MB) and then once we are done we back the disks up to an attached USB stick. On that USB stick we need it to be a full backup so it can be fully restored. We then take a copy of the contents of the USB sticks back to our office and want to archive those onto our network. Ideally we'd then like to generate an incremental backup from those full backup (using the base image) so that we can store just the ~300MB and not the 7gb+ on our network servers forever and a day.

Is there an easy/clever way to do this operation? Is this something that could be readily scripted for non-technical users somehow?

Thanks,
Jay

Re: Convert a Full Backup to an Incremental one

Posted: Thu Dec 02, 2021 9:39 pm
by Bob Coleman
You have a TBI image of a base that you restore onto multiple PCs, then make modifications on each PC, make a full backup of each PC and take it to a central location?

Considering one of the many modified PCs for clarity, how about restoring its full backup to the base PC from which the original full backup was made. That PC will now be an exact clone of the previously modified PC, right? Now make a backup of this clone specifying changes only and the original base backup as base for the changes only backup.

I'm not convinced there are not pitfalls regarding using backup files from one PC on another, but you seem to be already doing that to install the base on the many PCs, so maybe all the PCs are identical hardware and maybe this would work.

Re: Convert a Full Backup to an Incremental one

Posted: Fri Dec 03, 2021 2:02 am
by TeraByte Support
Full back could be base when you do a changes only backup. If you meant convert incremental to full, you use the consolidate option.

Re: Convert a Full Backup to an Incremental one

Posted: Fri Dec 03, 2021 3:39 pm
by jstav
Yes both of those are feasible solutions if I still have the hardware.

Let me construct the question a bit differently. At the end of what we do with these PC's, we have two files, a base.tbi (which is a full backup of what was originally put onto the pc), and modified.tbi (which is a full backup of that same pc but is now modified somewhat, but likely is 90%+ the same as base.tbi). When we have these files back at the office, and no longer have access to the PC hardware in question (we could scrounge for a similar hardware setup but we're talking at a minimum 10 PCs at a time).

I want to run a script or something that takes those 2 tbi files as input and then outputs an incremental.tbi (which is the content of the modified.tbi as an incremental/changes only backup using the base.tbi as its base image). Ideally I don't want to restore that image first. I think I'm looking for pretty much the opposite operation of the consolidate.

Is this possible? I think if I could specify an *.tbi file as a virtual drive to backup and a different *.tbi file as the existing backup I'd be able to do this.

Thanks,
Jay

Re: Convert a Full Backup to an Incremental one

Posted: Fri Dec 03, 2021 7:23 pm
by TeraByte Support(PP)
Don't know if it would work, but have you tried mounting the new image with TBIHD and seeing if you could use it as the source for a Changes Only backup based on the original? I assume IFW would need to see it as the same drive (or close enough).

Re: Convert a Full Backup to an Incremental one

Posted: Fri Dec 03, 2021 7:43 pm
by jstav
There's the magic... It looks like TBIHD is able to make this work (mounting the modified.tbi). Then Image For Windows can do the incremental backup against the base.tbi.

By any chance does TBIHD have a command line interface?

Jay

Re: Convert a Full Backup to an Incremental one

Posted: Fri Dec 03, 2021 10:25 pm
by TeraByte Support(PP)
Yes. Run tbihd /? for usage info.