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Kudos0

Wrong date after restore

I wanted to do a clean installation of windows 10 . I backup all my files, on an external hard disk, with Norton 360 premium , and did a clean installation of windows 10. I restored my files and to my surprise all folders and all files have the date ( creation date and modification date)  of the day I did the restore. I cannot do any search by dates anymore.

For this time , I think I cannot do anything to  resolve my problem ( all the original files were deleted). But I want to do the same manipulation on my wife's computer and I do not want to have the same result.

Is there any setting in the program to keep the right dates of the files and folders after restore???? 

Labels: Restore

Replies

Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

Hi Eridan.

Welcome to the Norton Community Forums.

I have just done a restore from an online backup using Norton and the "Date modified" and the "Date created" both show the original dates and not the date of the restore.  This test was done using the restore to a new location but I would not expect the result to be any different if done to the original location.

I am only using Windows 8 but using that, if I use Windows Explorer and select a file and right click then select Properties it should show several different dates (Created, Modified, Accessed).  In my case all show the original date.  If I look at the top bar in Windows Explorer and right click I get a large range of file attributes to select from including many different dates.  Do either of these options help you?

Obviously the files are being written back, and so created (!?) on the restore date but I do not see the problem you are having.

Does the above help?

Have you tried a test with just one or two files to see if you can get any different results?

I look forward to hearing back from you.

Mike
Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

It looks I did something wrong and my answer to your help post did not go through.Here again my answer

Thanks for your welcome wishes and for your help

I had to backup something as 200 Gb so I could not do it online ( time consuming and a lot of space to buy).

I did a local backup on an external drive . About your question about tests with few files :it is the same result.

about displayed dates : the creation date and the modification date are the same ( the one of my restore backup). ( I did not found any other possibilities in explorer)

I agree with you that if you copy a file on a new device , it should take a new date , but I am not copying files , I am restoring files , so I should get the dates of the original files. 

Again , thanks for your help

Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

Hello again Eridan.

Thanks for the clarification.    Interesting....

I had tried my previous restore from the online storage because it was all I had accessible at the time you posted your earlier message.  But after your clarification I today tried a restore from a network drive (using the latest NSBU and Windows 8.1) and found what you have found that the date shown on the restored file is the date of the restore.  In fact I find all the following dates related to the file as showing today's date:-

Date modified: Date: Date accessed: Date created: Date last saved: 

Why the result should be different for online backup and local backup I do not know.  I will try asking around and see if I can get an explanation and hopefully a fix but I would not hold my breath if I were you.  Wish me luck.  

Sorry I have no fix for you. 

Mike
Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

Hi Eridan.

I have asked around a bit and done some more testing and the result is what you do not want to hear.  SendOfJive pointed me at a couple of old posts by Norton staff who stated clearly that any restore will give the date of the restore and not the original file date.  Others have confirmed that this is also the case with other backup software.

I have run another test restoring from the online servers and this time there was no doubt but the dates were all the restore date and nothing else.  I have no idea what happened last time unless I mistakenly checked the original file rather than the restored one.  I do not think that likely but cannot now account for my apparently aberrant result in any other way.

Sorry about that answer.

Should I hear anything that suggests it may be possible to get the original file dates back I will let you know.

Mike
Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

First of all , Thanks Mike for all your efforts.

I did, too , some researches  and I found that this problem of files/folders dates after restore or copy is quite general. Until now I did not found a backup program that clearly state that the files/folders dates are kept.

Some people said to use the command : Robocopy ( but it is a copy and not a backup and also it is a command line with a lot of options which will need to be carefully checked). I tried some backups programs  which returned to me the originals dates for the files but all the folders took the date of the restore. I will continue to check.

Again , Thanks Mike

Best regards

Eridan

Kudos1 Stats

Re: Wrong date after restore

Hello Eridan,

I hope you don't mind me jumping in here. Andmike has been discussing this offline with a number of the gurus.

Previously I have restored individual files which always retained their time stamps but wanted to test again to gather information for this specific case. I tried restoring a couple of files from both my Seagate Manager local backup and from my Norton Secure Online Storage.  In both cases the files retained their original time stamps.

With both programs I was sure to use the actual 'restore' option and did not perform a drag and drop or other method.

My production machines are configured to use Seagate as local backup and NSBU with Secure Online Storage, but I will set up a test computer to use Norton backup with an external hard drive as the destination and let you know the outcome of restoration.

Would you be willing to list the exact, step by step procedure you followed?  This may help us pin down the issue.

Now for robocopy.  I used that a few years back when transferring files from an XP machine to a new Windows 7 computer.  You are correct that since it uses a command line which must have the proper syntax it may seem challenging at first, but I does transfer files with their original time stamps intact and it works very quickly once executed.  Should you decide to go that route, let me know and I'll review my notes on the procedure and provide a few tips I found along the way.

"Anyone who isn't confused really doesn't understand the situation."   Edward R. Murrow
Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

Hi Eridan,

I have stumbled upon something interesting.  Using Comcast NSS (NSBU) v22.5.2.15 on my test machine, I defined a local backup set with a destination to an external hard drive.  After waiting a few hours and restarting the machine, I restored three different files and one folder.  I was disappointed to see that the time stamps all mirrored the restoration date and time.  I restored by using the Norton UI interface and also using Windows explorer > My Computer > Norton Backup Drive > right clicking the files and selecting 'Restore'. The metadata with the original file creation date had been replaced. 

So, I have reproduced the same issue you describe.  I do not know why this occurs when I can restore files from the same HDD using Seagate Manager and the time stamps are preserved.

Along with Mike, I am going to pursue this with Norton staff to see if there is an explanation.

"Anyone who isn't confused really doesn't understand the situation."   Edward R. Murrow
Kudos1 Stats

Re: Wrong date after restore

It's because that data is not part of the file, with the possible exception of Word files.  (I'll get to that in a minute).

A file really only holds the information saved inside the file.  For an example if you want to see for yourself make a new file in notepad.  Check the properties and you will see the file size is 0 bytes.  0 bytes is equal to nothing but you can see it has creation and access data. That data and the name of the file is all held in the NTFS data of the File Allocation table, it is not part of the file.  You can prove this to yourself by saving 1 character into the notepad file, the size changes to 1 byte. Now change the name of the notepad file to something very long.  You will see that the longer name and changed access time does not change the filesize. That shows you that information is not "in" the file.

When a file is copied or restored, the file is "written" to the drive and "name" is taken from the file allocation table (FAT) and a new entry in the destination's FAT is made for the filename.

The creation date, modified date, and last access date (dates) could just as easily as the "name" be written to the FAT.  But obviously some "backup" programs don't do that.

If you really wanted to get technical, it would actually be "incorrect" to write "wrong" date information because when you restore a file your really not "restoring" the file your replacing a file with a backed up file, or your copying a file from a backup to a new system that never had that file in the first place.   I totally agree that having the "original" dates could be very helpful and a user should be able to choose that option if they want but it does not change the fact that technically it is wrong.  You really are replacing the file and not just copying and pasting the data "inside" the file.

As for Word files, they and all Office files contain a whole lot of "metadata" and that metadata is indeed held hidden inside the file.  You don't normally see it only because the proprietary nature of the file but it is used to track a lot of data and I honestly never bothered to look and see if they carry the normal NTFS metadata as well.

Dave

Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

Thank you very much for the detailed explanation, Dave.  That is quite a bit to take in.

Are you saying that we should not expect the file time stamps to remain intact when restoring?  As previously mentioned I have restored a number of file types using both Seagate Manager and Norton Secure Online Backup; this would include Word documents, pdf files, jpegs, psd files and even txt files.  It just happened that for this thread I chose a screenshot of a Word document.

On every occasion, the time stamps displayed the original dates - except when restoring a Norton backup file from a local hard drive.

Too me, that seems odd.

"Anyone who isn't confused really doesn't understand the situation."   Edward R. Murrow
Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

First of all , I must thanks you all for all the care and help you are providing.

@phil_D: I used the very standard method of Norton security : I set-up a list of files in a backup set  backup ( using an external USB drive), run the backup. After doing a clean installation of  windows 10 and reinstalling Norton security , I press "restore" choose my backup set , and choose all files  to their original position. At the end of restore, all files and folders ( including all Office and PDF documents) took the date of the restore .

About Robocopy I found that Microsoft has developed a GUI program for this command  (robocopy GUI 3.1)which can be downloaded free. It's simplify the use of the command; And, in the documentation of robocopy, the possibility to copy or not the time stamps  of the files( and others properties that I did not think about before) is very clear. Upon these informations , it looks to me that, has said DaveH , the time stamp are not included in the files themselves , but in the NTFS of the disk and the copy/backup program must take this in consideration.

Again, thank you to all.

Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

Your example of Robocopy and your explanation of the documentation is excellent.

None of those attributes are actually part of the file, but neither is the filename and every single copy or backup program preserves the filename.  So it really is not much extra work to copy or regenerate the old attributes and time stamps as well. As long as the program or tool is pulling the name out of the FAT it can just as easily pull out the time stamps, security attributes and other NTFS data and copy them as well.

You also see that by default Robocopy does it the "technically correct" way (does not preserve the time stamps).  But it also gives the user a choice to use options to copy time stamps and certain other attibutes if the user wants them.

Sometimes technically correct and a users expectations differ and a company has to choose if they want to please the nerds or please the majority of people spending money on the program.

Time stamps are the easiest attributes to notice when they are changed but you will also sometimes spot other attributes that get changed as well.  Security and access permissions is another common one, especially on networks because certain format types like FAT32 simply can't support NTFS attributes and certain operating systems like Linux do things differently or simply don't care about windows attributes. When you have files moving between different formats and operating systems the attributes become all wacky. (one of the reasons why Word documents track things like users and who made the edits in hidden metadata inside the file)

You also see a lot of inconsistency with times in general with "cloud" storage becoming more common.  Depending on the country or time zone the server is located in, You can even end up with files that say they were created "tomorrow".

I have seen inconsistencies in some of the popular compression programs as well as backup programs so it's not just Norton.

But it would be nice of Norton offered the option to preserve the time stamps,

Dave

Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

Agree with you at 100%.

Hope that a big company as Norton Symantec will take in considerations these information's and will propose an "advanced options", in some new release, with the possibility to backup all or some of the "external" properties of the files/folders.

Thank you, again, to all of you, to have helped me to clarified this point on the backup/restore  functionality of the Norton internet security program.

.

Kudos2 Stats

Re: Wrong date after restore

Hey guys!

A quick introduction... my name is Rafa, and I'm the Product Manager specialized on Backup here at Norton. I'm working with Collin in trying to take a look at some of the issues on backup that are reported here and make sure you get a good response from us as well as ensuring we keep these in mind when adding new features to our roadmap.

For this issue in particular.... Thanks for showing it to us, and thanks to Andmike, Phil_D and DaveH for further exploring this and providing some good explanations!
 
I honestly don’t have much to add, other than to acknowledge that this is indeed not the right user experience. When we restore your files, our goal is that things look as if nothing had changed whatsoever. If we are “changing” the timestamps of those files (or any other metadata), we are not delivering on that goal. I’m going to look into it and see how can we make this better. I can’t give you any other details at this point, but know that this is now in our radar and we’ll be working on making this better.
 
One question I do have, though: some people mention that it would be nice to have the choice to keep the original timestamps or update them. Is this indeed a choice you would be interested in having? Or would it be better to just make sure we keep the original metadata?
 
Thanks!

Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

Thanks for coming here and listening to us Rafa.  

My response to your question in the last paragraph is that I personally would prefer to see the original file dates (as they were before the backup), but that if a choice can be easily provided then that might be nice to have.

Others may, and will, have different views.  

Mike
Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

Hello Rafa

First of all I must said that I am quite overwhelmed by the help and seriousness my topic is taken in account. I would like to thank all of you about it.

I think , I can speak only  for me , I am not a IT manager or anything like that.

I had files ( pictures , forms, offices documents) with dates . The dates helped me to get a chronological order of theses files. After  restore I have lost the chronological order and sometimes is time consuming to find the right file or the right picture.

I understand  the backup program must be as simple as possible , because a lot of users are not specialists and to offer too many options could be counter productive. 

But, in other hand, as I said , for a backup/restore app , I think, it is reasonable, as default choice,  to expect to get back most or all the properties of the original files.  The time stamp is for me the more important but may be for an organisation the restoration of other properties could be very interesting too.

May be an "advanced" window could help more experienced users to set the options they wants.

This is my opinion .

Anyway , thanks, again, to you Rafa and all others .

Best regards

Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

HI all

To imagine that after a hard disk crash all files on my new disk have the same date is frightening.

To say that other programs also show the restore date seems absurd to me. How could you make an incremental back up if the back up system does not know the date and time stamp of file? I do not think it is sufficient to simply rely on the fact that a file has changed.

Other programs restore with the original date/time stamp: Acronis (let you choose); Paragon (free version).

Best regards 

Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

Hi Fbbern

 thanks for the infos.  

I  am working with 2 types of character's  ( Western and Asian) and I am very careful when I use new backup programs ( I had bad experiences of some programs changing the Asian characters by "?" or by a rectangles. Only to said , no matter which backup program you wants to use : make some testings to be sure , the program do what you expect to do.

 regards

Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

My test also shows that restoring file(s) from a Norton backup set replaces all original dates with the restore date.  I don't understand why this issue is not being addressed in an urgent manner, and how original testing did not see this before releasing the product.  Or, was it originally correct and an inadvertent code change removed the correct restore behavior?  PLEASE fix this.  Thanks.

Kudos0

Re: Wrong date after restore

So, I realize I'm resurrecting the dead here, but I just ran into this problem myself (i.e. all dates set to restore date).  I was thus disappointed to see that this has been a known issue for at least two years and it still hasn't been corrected in the most recent version (Norton Security 22.10.1.10).  Has there really been no attempt to fix this?

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