Q

Dealing with open files

How does backup software deal with open files? How does it back them up? If a DLL file is being used by a program, you cannot copy it because windows locks the file. Is there a method for backing up such files without stopping the program that has locked them?

Most backup software companies use an open file manager with Windows, such as St. Bernard or Columbia Data Products. These products take a snapshot of the entire drive. This creates a virtual copy of the filesystem that can be backed up without read/write locks. These snapshots use the "copy on write" technology discussed in the book "Unix Backup & Recovery". (This technique is not limited to Unix or NT.)

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This was first published in July 2002

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