BACK TO PCSTATS Follow PCSTATS on Facebook PCSTATS RSS Feed PCSTATS Twitter Feed + Motherboards
+ Videocards
+ Memory
+ Beginners Guides
News & Advanced Search  Feedback?
[X]   Directory of
Guides & Reviews

Beginners Guides
Weekly Newsletter
Archived Newsletters

Seagate Backup Plus Slim External USB 3.0 2TB Hard Drive Review
PCSTATS TechTi p - Tale of the Corrupted Outlook PST Backup  - PCSTATS TechTi p - Tale of the Corrupted Outlook PST Backup
Thu, February 06 2014 | 2:56AM | PermaLink Feedback?

Regular backups are a critical chore no one should overlook. In a small office environment this might involve copying the Outlook file to an external hard drive once a month; around here we sometimes plug a 2TB HDD into a vertical SATA-to-USB docking station (ie. Tt BlackX Docking Station) for this.

Pretty standard stuff really. But how many of you check the state of your backed up Outlook file by coping it back to a PC and opening it up? Not many, I'd wager. Well, you might want to because there's a chance that backed up email could be corrupt.

We had this problem recently and it was a bit of a devil to solve. Hard drive space was fine on both destination and source, the anti-virus system was disabled temporarily to ensure it wasn't being overloaded by a +4GB file. Zipping the PST file to decrease the amount of data didn't help either. Having ruled out insufficient storage space, corruption by virus scan and corruption by too-big-a-file, we were at a bit of a loss.

Methodical Testing Saves the Day

To find out what was going wrong we tried several variations of a backup to determine if it was a problem with the file, how the file was being moved, or where the file was being moved to. After each step we checked the Outlook file to see if worked.

1) Backups of the Outlook PST file copied over the LAN were not being corrupted, so the original file was okay (although ownership permissions caused other, unrelated issues).
2) Copying the backup over eSATA cable to the external HDD also worked. No problems there.
3) Using alternate USB ports for the external drive didn't help. The problem was USB related, perhaps?
4) A lot of time was wasted while we ran tests copying the file off the external HDD back to the computer, testing different cables and such because the file was already corrupted (the first time it was copied to the external HDD). The tedious solution was to copy a working file out, then copy that back for each test.
5) With the problem traced to the USB cable, we tried different cables. First, plugged into the USB extender cable then plugged directly into the computer. The existing solution of USB cable and short USB extender cable worked fine for two years, but for whatever reason was corrupting big moves of data. The solution was to replace both short USB cables with a single 6' shielded USB cable... After this, the test was run again with success!

The Take Away from this Tale of Woe?

Test your backups to see if they actually work. If you're getting corrupted data over a USB-based storage device, try swapping out the cables while keeping total cable length under 6 feet.

Be nice, 'Like PCSTATS' on FB. Let us know what you think of this Tech Tip!


News Categories
Audio / Sound Beginners Guides Benchmarks
Biometrics BIOS Business / Industry
Cases Chipset Computer / SFF PCs
Cooling / Heatsinks CPU / Processors Digital Cameras
Drivers Editorial Games
Gossip Hard Drives/SSD Hardware
Home Theatre Imaging Memory
Mobile Devices Monitors Motherboards
Mouse Pads MP3 Players Networking
Notebooks Operating System Optical Drives
Overclocking Peripherals Power Supply
Press Release Printers Servers
Site News Software Tips
Tradeshows / Events Video Cards Web News
   Looking for something a little farther back? Try PCstats News Archives: 1999 - present
   05 / 26 / 2018 | 6:20AM
Hardware Sections 

PCSTATS Network Features Information About Us Contact
PCSTATS Newsletter
ShoppingList Assistance
Tech Glossary
Technology WebSite Listings
PermaLink News
Archived News
Submit News (Review RSS Feed)
Site Map
PCstats Wallpaper
About Us
Privacy Policy
Advertise on PCSTATS

How's Our Driving?
© Copyright 1999-2018 All rights reserved. Privacy policy and Terms of Use.