Unable to restore a file

For years I have been backing up to My Passport Ultra, but now I have tried to restore for the first time. I only want to restore a single file.

I went through all the steps as explained in the example on support.wd.com and got the single file highlighted. I asked that the file be restored to its original location (which still exists). When I clicked on “Restore,” the promised horizontal thermometer bar appeared in a window entitled “Restoring.” But nothing happened. I waited 15 or 20 minutes, but nothing happened.

I have never done a Restore, however since you only have one file…how about trying a stand alone copy/paste from your backup device. Open the directory tree using Explorer (Win) and point to your device…F:, H: or whatever. Expand the folder of “WD Backup.swstor” then expand and drill down to a weird folder (some strange character). You should now see a History and a Volume (…) folders. The Volume() folder should contain the latest file that you last backed up. The History folder has the multiple copies and has a stranger presentation of file names…hope you don’t need one of these. Copy and paste the desired file back to your PC folder. Use the date sort to find you files.

As to your Restore, I hope you post back your findings on this issue.

Copy and Paste! What an excellent idea! Why didn’t I think of that? I should have. Alas, I didn’t.

I did think of trying to do a regular file “copy” command, but that didn’ t work.

I should have been sharp enough to delete the corrupted version of the file on my C: drive but, alas again, I was not. The outcome was that by the time I saw your suggestion, WD had performed a backup so that the corrupted file had been copied to the My Passport.

But thank you for your idea. I will be sure to remember it.

Seeker…all is not loss, there are many backed up version of the file on the WD Backup…just a little more tricky to get to. This would still be a brute force method vs the Restore procedure of the Software (I have yet to try, especially on an older file). You could try this to get your file back, then experiment with the WD Restore of an older file… Was your file a virus corrupt or just one that got Over Saved as a bad copy?

Open the folder tree of the WD device and folder ‘WD Backup.swstor’. Open your Name folder, the next Random name folder and you will see a Volume(…) and History folders. The Volume() contains the latest Updates as stored on your PC. The History is all the backups. Keep expanding till you Find your file folder. In Explorer (PC), press the Name Col so that the files are sorted by names…you should see the dates/sizes in it’s col.

Your file is listed with a _LAST (just some pointer) and files with random letters after the name…like monthly.xlsop379. Find the one closest to a correct date/size and copy/paste back to your PC folder. Now you can Rename the file and strip out the random letters. Seems straight forward. Remember, that the resulting file will now have the same name as the previously stored corrupt file so you need to juggle the files around.

On another issue. Do you back up just you necessary data or say your PC name folder. I notice my 6mo daily backup drive was starting to increase in size…a 1T drive. Search online for a PC product called, Treesize…it’s free. Its a pgm that gives you a directory listing of you folder tree, listing the total size and the number of files in each. After running, you can expand the folders to see the size and # of files…scary. On mine, I saw one folder with over 4million files…yup, millon! It was in the Users…AppData/Local…Mozilla. The Mozilla browser creates over a thousand scratch files daily, that because each is unique, gets an individual backup. Heck, I could not even open the folder to view. Treesize has a free and some Pro version but check it out…you can select the drive, or folder and you can save the expanded display as a PDF. I expanded the tree and just did a Snip screen copy…Shocking results. Went back and changed my Schedule…I may even go back and delete some of the bad folders from both the History and Volume() to reduce the # of files…good luck! How much data do you currently have stored on your backup drive?

Voila! I was not actively thinking about the History folder, even though it was hiding in plain sight. I must have seen it dozens of times, but it just did not register with me. But using your technique I found my missing information. Did a copy and paste, and all is well with that particular file.

Now I just need to be able to restore at will. I assume this external drive and its software are compatible with Windows 10. I think that W10 came out in 2015 (even though I didn’t use it until getting a new computer this past January). And I bought the external drive in 2016.

Thanks for the tip about treesize. I will check it out.

To answer your question, my external drive has 639 GB on a 1.81 TB drive. Clearly those history files are beginning to take up space. I need to check into that.

Thanks for everything.

Seeker…Awesome that you were at least able to brute force retrieve that file. I’ve had Excel files that I needed back after an over-file. I was able to get it back too.

Please do check out the Restore, especially the older files. Care in file names because the Restore of the History type files will strip out the trailing characters and could/would interfere with the existing PC name.

The Treesize program, or any other Folder statistic program is a must. I was having issues when I was running Malwarebyte pgm against the Passport. Pgm terminated, complaining about files…as I investigated I notice some folders had lots of data…especially a Mozilla cache2 under AppData/Local…right now, I am Explorer deleting over 2.7million files from the History and 1.2million from the Volume(). Only about 50GB of space. I modified my Passport schedule to Exclude the AppData and only proceed with my work, home, play files, etc…If my computer crashes, I can reload programs and applications…but need my real stuff. For you 639GB of data stored on the 2T drive is a LOT, unless its large movies. Most other real important stuff is MB size. Treesize will get you a Snapshot of you drives for reference and direction for going forward.