How-to: Verify why some source files are excluded


We’ve added a new article to Backup4all’s extensive Knowledgebase, that explains why in some situations not all the source files are backed up and what options there are to fixing the issue: Why are some of the source files not backed up?

There are 2 possible situations in which some of the source files are not backed up, either due to some exclusion filters, or because of an issue with a corrupt USN journal.

Case 1: Files are excluded by the default filters in Backup4all.

Backup4all comes by default with some default filters to exclude the most common temporary file types, cache files, system files and others that shouldn’t be backed up. We exclude those also because backing up temporary files is problematic, as they might be deleted by the program that created them during backups.

Example of temporary files that are automatically excluded by Backup4all’s default filters: *.temp, *.tmp, ~$*.docx, ~$*.dotx, ~$*.xlsx, ~$*.xltx

If for some reason you do want those files backed up, the easiest solution is to disable that particular exclusion filter. Just right click on the backup job you want to disable default filters for and go to Backup Properties then Filters. In there you can uncheck the automatic filters that you don’t want excluded.

Backup4all filters

Case 2: Files are not included in backup because the USN journal is corrupt

By default, Backup4all uses the Windows USN journal to quickly detect new and modified files (after the first backup execution). The USN Journal (Update Sequence Number Journal), or Change Journal, is a feature of Windows NT file system (NTFS) which maintains a record of changes made to the volume.

We use it because it is faster than the classic method of keeping track of modified files. However, there are rare situations when the USN journal becomes corrupt and because of that Backup4all won’t include some files in the backup.

The fix in this case is to to disable the usage of the USN journal, and rely instead on the classic method of keeping track of modified files. The classic method is slower but it’s more accurate.

To disable the usage of USN journal for a backup job just go into Backup Properties and open the Advanced section. In there uncheck the Smart file scanning mode option. That should be it, just restart the backup after that.

USN journal


This is a summary of the full article we’ve recently posted. For a detailed tutorial on how to configure your backups to use split files, read the full article in our Knowledgebase: Why are some of the source files not backed up?

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