To use the backup server, you must first download the latest Retrospect client for your computer; free client installers for both Windows and MacOS can be found on the Retrospect web site.
During the client installation, you will be prompted for a password; this password allows the backup server to initiate access to your machine. You must provide this password to the lab staff in order to have your machine added to the backup server. Once your machine has been added, this password is no longer required (in fact, the lab staff will change the password after initiating access) so please choose a non-obvious one.
If you are prompted to create an firewall rule to allow the retrospect application through, do so. If you are not prompted, you will need to manually configure an exception. Windows clients need only run few commands.
In the interest of keeping the backup server accessible, the lab staff suggest that users not catalog their entire PC, in particular files which can be restored more efficiently from installation media (operating system, application installations, etc...). Users are encouraged to keep all their files they wish to have backed up in a single folder (or a small set of folders if necessary). You should provide the path to this folder in your request, so that it may be configured on the server. Note: if the folder is a system-aliased file, such as My Documents, please list the full path to this file (i.e. C:\Documents and Settings\user\My Documents).
Once the client is installed, please contact the Lab Staff to have your machines added to the backup server's client list. Please provide the following information:
|Machine name:||IP address|
|Password:||to allow initial access by server|
|Data directory:||path to files you wish backed up|
Client Configuration and Usage
The installer places a Retrospect control panel on the computer; all user interaction with the backup server is controlled through this. Figure 1 shows thepane of the control panel. The backup history is displayed here as well as the current status. The client may be deactivated here to prevent a backup from occuring while using the machine.
Figure 1. Retrospect Client's Status Tab
Figure 2 shows thepane of the control panel. This controls the frequency of backups; the default setting is , which is currently once per day. A computer placed on the network that has not been backed up for more than a week will immediately be placed in a queue for backup. Note that Retrospect performs incremental backups, so if there are no new files at backup time, the server will exit after checking the dates of the backup directory. If the user has new files that need to be backed up, they can choose the "As soon as possible" option and click . This will immediately queue the machine to be backed up.
Figure 2. Retrospect Client's Backup Server Tab
The backup server runs continuously, so users may have their computers backed up at any time. The exception will be during the administrative PC backups which begin daily at 7:00pm; the backup server will defer new backup requests shortly before these backups take place, and will resume once these backups have completed. Users who try to backup their machines up during this time will have the execution deferred until the administrative backups complete.
Once the user's computer is configured in the backup server, requests to restore files should be sent to the Lab Staff. Note that due to the incremental backup scheme, different versions of files from different dates can be restored, not simply "the last copy". Please contact the Lab Staff if you have further questions.