Real time unattended mirroring utility

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spicydog
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Real time unattended mirroring utility

#1 Post by spicydog » Wed May 04, 2011 7:46 am

Does anyone know of any XP application that will mirror a specific folder (on a USB flashdrive) to another folder (on another USB flashdrive) both plugged in the same machine?

Note that both USB drives have 2 assigned letters which will never change.

I'm looking for something that will run in the background (perhaps as a service) that will automatically mirror the 2 folders in real time (not at a scheduled time like at the end of the day).

I am doing this for a person who discovered the computer hobby at an old age and therefore I should be setting this up for him without involving any interaction from his side... Actually it would be ideal if he could just plug in the 2 flashdrives, change whatever needed on one of them (always the same... let's say the master/source USB drive) and changes should be immediately (automatically and silently) reflected on the other (slave/target) USB drive.

Thanks in advance for any creative input :mrgreen:

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I am Baas
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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#2 Post by I am Baas » Wed May 04, 2011 8:22 am

Bəəs 2.0

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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#3 Post by spicydog » Wed May 04, 2011 8:42 am

I am Baas wrote:BlueFish File Mirror maybe.
I have tried that but I cannot make it work... I make changes in the master folder then I go and check the target folder and no changes are reflected :(

If you don't mind me asking, do you have positive memories yourself of that application (meaning you use/d it) or was it just a (sort of blind) suggestion?

Thanks

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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#4 Post by SYSTEM » Wed May 04, 2011 9:23 am

Consider using a junction point.

You can replace the master folder by a junction that points to the target folder. For example, "F:\Master" can point to "G:\MyFolder\Target".

Now, if he tries to edit the file "F:\Master\personal\work.doc", he's actually editing "G:\MyFolder\Target\personal\work.doc". Similarly, if he later tries to view "F:\Master\personal\work.doc", he actually views "G:\MyFolder\Target\personal\work.doc".

He can access the target folder even if the master folder is unavailable, but not the other way around. If the target folder is inaccessible, the master folder can't be opened either.

Does this sound a good option?
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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#5 Post by webfork » Wed May 04, 2011 9:25 am

spicydog wrote:Does anyone know of any XP application that will mirror a specific folder (on a USB flashdrive) to another folder (on another USB flashdrive) both plugged in the same machine?
Apart from BlueFish, this is admittedly a hole in our collection. Dsynchronize comes pretty close, but the real-time mirroring functionality is listed as experimental and Dsynchronize itself sometimes seems to become unresponsive (and eventually come back) on XP. Still, I have a hard time finding a better sync program for some operations.

Although my tests with the realtime sync were fine, I never used it more than for a few hours at a time.
Last edited by webfork on Wed May 04, 2011 12:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: (direct link added to dsyncronize)

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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#6 Post by spicydog » Wed May 04, 2011 9:38 am

SYSTEM wrote:Consider using a junction point.

You can replace the master folder by a junction that points to the target folder. For example, "F:\Master" can point to "G:\MyFolder\Target".

Now, if he tries to edit the file "F:\Master\personal\work.doc", he's actually editing "G:\MyFolder\Target\personal\work.doc". Similarly, if he later tries to view "F:\Master\personal\work.doc", he actually views "G:\MyFolder\Target\personal\work.doc".

He can access the target folder even if the master folder is unavailable, but not the other way around. If the target folder is inaccessible, the master folder can't be opened either.

Does this sound a good option?
In a perfect world it would be... But he needs actual files (not hard/soft links) on both USB drives :(

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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#7 Post by m^(2) » Wed May 04, 2011 10:20 am

RAID?

spicydog
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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#8 Post by spicydog » Wed May 04, 2011 11:28 am

webfork wrote:
spicydog wrote:Does anyone know of any XP application that will mirror a specific folder (on a USB flashdrive) to another folder (on another USB flashdrive) both plugged in the same machine?
Apart from BlueFish, this is admittedly a hole in our collection. Dsynchronize comes pretty close, but the real-time mirroring functionality is listed as experimental and Dsynchronize itself sometimes seems to become unresponsive (and eventually come back) on XP. Still, I have a hard time finding a better sync program for some operations.

Although my tests with the realtime sync were fine, I never used it more than for a few hours at a time.
Howdy webfork!

I am ashamed to admit that (being a happy user of the superb DTaskManager) I did not know about the existence of DSynchronize... I have been running a few tests with v.2.30.1 and so far the performance is more than satisfactory. Knowing this person's (ref. my 1st post) needs I believe that *drum roll* I found what I was looking for :mrgreen:

I'll carry out more tests in the next days and I'll post here some feedback, but... My feelings about DSynchronize are very positive indeed!

Thanks again ;)

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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#9 Post by webfork » Wed May 04, 2011 12:04 pm

spicydog wrote:I found what I was looking for
Excellent -- glad that helped out. And yes, DTaskManager is also great.

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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#10 Post by I am Baas » Wed May 04, 2011 9:32 pm

Bluefish works for me (source folder on HD, mirror on a flash drive).

Did you mix the source and destination folder by any chance?
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spicydog
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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#11 Post by spicydog » Wed May 04, 2011 10:28 pm

I am Baas wrote:Bluefish works for me (source folder on HD, mirror on a flash drive).

Did you mix the source and destination folder by any chance?
If you have the time/chance, kindly run this (Bluefish) test:

1. Source folder on a flash drive, mirror on another flash drive
2. Place 3 files on source (1 .xls + 1 .txt + 1 .doc)
3. Edit them (just add a word/number in the documents, not in the file names)
4. Check if mirror reflects changes and (if at all) how long time after you edited the source

Thanks in advance :mrgreen:

EDIT: Actually, whether I run the test on local or external drives, the result is the same... No dice! :( But I am curious to hear if you (or anybody else) got BlueFish to work starting from point 2 above.

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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#12 Post by Ruby » Fri May 06, 2011 7:22 am

Not sure if you settled on what to use, so here's another option.

Allway Sync

Write up on makeuseof (slightly outdated)

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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#13 Post by spicydog » Fri May 06, 2011 9:25 am

Ruby wrote:Not sure if you settled on what to use, so here's another option.

Allway Sync

Write up on makeuseof (slightly outdated)
Really appreciated suggestion Ruby, thanks!

I have briefly tested Allway Sync... My preliminary conclusion:

1) FOOTPRINT: Allway Sync (well in excess of 20 MB) whereas BOTH DSynchronize and BlueFish are much lighter (well within 1/2 MB if you really count all files). I know that I should compare "apple with apple" but (bottom line) I don't think the person mentioned in my 1st post cares much about the fancy GUI animations and the config granularity offered by Allway Sync (since for him it will all silently happen in the background), which -I repeat- is not to be compared with the other 2 smaller tools that -with all due respect- seem to be real ass-kickers, BTW ;)

2) PERFORMANCE: Unlike DSynchronize, Allway Sync seems to delete and recreate files whenever they are edited/saved (negative for defrag + speed)... The file physically disappears from the target location and then re-appears a couple of seconds later.

3) The real-time synch of Allway Sync is min. 1 minute (DSynchronize = 20 sec.)

So at this point I suspect that (for this specific task) I will stick to DSynchronize... Unless I'll somehow manage to make BlueFish work properly... I must confess that I am really really curious about that "fishy" utility :mrgreen:

Thanks again for your input, mate.

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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#14 Post by Ruby » Fri May 06, 2011 9:39 am

I never used Allway Sync; I remember reading that write up, and since you were testing apps I figured I'd throw it out there.

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Re: Real time unattended mirroring utility

#15 Post by Ruby » Fri May 06, 2011 11:06 am

What I've gathered from testing BlueFish; it does not save a changed file twice in succession.

I'll be a little clearer:
Creating 'file1' in 'source' copies 'file1' in 'dest'
Creating 'file2' in 'source' copies 'file2' in 'dest'

Open 'file1' in 'source' and type "Hello, World" and it's saved in 'file1' in 'dest'
Open 'file2' in 'source' and type "Hello, World" and it's saved in 'file2' in 'dest'

Open 'file1' in 'source' and modify to "Goodbye, World" and it's saved in 'file1' in 'dest'
Open 'file2' in 'source' and modify to "Goodbye, World" and it's saved in 'file2' in 'dest'

Now open file2 again, the one we just saved and modify back to "Hello, World" and the file is not saved.

This program (BlueFish) will not write/save a modified file twice in succession.

If this is not some sort of anomaly I (and I suspect spicydog) are experiencing, than it is a serious flaw in this program.

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