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Retrospect Reviews

16.6.0
03 December 2019

Backup and recovery software.

Mikeymike
26 July 2019

Most helpful

This has become overpriced crapware. I bought it several months back, carefully considering whether Retrospect was worthy of consideration after they had dropped support for the Mac years back. I used to use it to back up to optical media and a tape drive before (then Dantz) decided to change their catalog format to a backwards-incompatible format, drop optical media support and then dropped Mac support entirely.

Since I've bought it, primarily to back up drives to B2 storage, this app has been nothing but trouble. It loses its settings on quit, doesn't recognize that it has been given full disk access, doesn't start the Engine on startup even though it is checked to do so in Retrospect's System Preferences panel or adding it directly to login items. Directly trying to launch the Engine results in an instant crash. Trying to start Retrospect proper yields a message "connecting to 127.0.0.1" that is an endless loop of nothing happening.

I have spent hours via email and phone support on this piece of garbage. I'm giving the phone support people one more chance tomorrow, then I'm going to ask them to revoke my license and refund my money. Even their support materials show screen shots that are versions and versions of macOS old and their support material is not up to date, especially regarding cloud backups. I've spent 98% of my time with this app troubleshooting instead of backing up. EPIC fail!

I was using ChronoSync to B2, but upload speeds were horrible using that app. I may have to revert to that despite its slowness.

CAVEAT EMPTOR!
Like (2)
Version 16.1.2

Read 107 Retrospect User Reviews

Rate this app:

Mikeymike
26 July 2019
This has become overpriced crapware. I bought it several months back, carefully considering whether Retrospect was worthy of consideration after they had dropped support for the Mac years back. I used to use it to back up to optical media and a tape drive before (then Dantz) decided to change their catalog format to a backwards-incompatible format, drop optical media support and then dropped Mac support entirely.

Since I've bought it, primarily to back up drives to B2 storage, this app has been nothing but trouble. It loses its settings on quit, doesn't recognize that it has been given full disk access, doesn't start the Engine on startup even though it is checked to do so in Retrospect's System Preferences panel or adding it directly to login items. Directly trying to launch the Engine results in an instant crash. Trying to start Retrospect proper yields a message "connecting to 127.0.0.1" that is an endless loop of nothing happening.

I have spent hours via email and phone support on this piece of garbage. I'm giving the phone support people one more chance tomorrow, then I'm going to ask them to revoke my license and refund my money. Even their support materials show screen shots that are versions and versions of macOS old and their support material is not up to date, especially regarding cloud backups. I've spent 98% of my time with this app troubleshooting instead of backing up. EPIC fail!

I was using ChronoSync to B2, but upload speeds were horrible using that app. I may have to revert to that despite its slowness.

CAVEAT EMPTOR!
Like (2)
Version 16.1.2
Eric•Woehler
31 March 2019
Once upon a time.... this was my goto backup protocol. Fast copy to external HD, high degree of file/folder selection/synch/backups etc etc then prog started playing up, dev was less than responsive and prices for single users became silly, so it was bye bye Retrospect. A once-great product that has withered and has been replaced by plenty of better/cheaper/faster apps. Pass on Retrospect and look around for alternatives - plenty of said cheaper/better/faster out there!
Like (1)
Version 16.0.1
Hal-Itosis
22 October 2018
For $136, one could purchase ChronoSync •and• Carbon Copy Cloner •and• SuperDuper... plus still have enough cash left over for a burger. -HI-
Like (2)
Version 15.6.0.125
Hermie
05 September 2017
Uploading to Backblaze B2 is still terrible in 14.5. Speed 1.4 MB/sec on a 500 Mbps line. Both Retrospect and Backblaze Support don't seem to care as I reported these issues to them ages ago and of course nothing has been done about it.
Like (1)
Version 14.5.0.146
Retrospect has now been working again for some time.

Old time Mac users, will remember Retrospect as the go-to Mac backup program. However, Retrospect fell on hard times as a sequence of new owners seemed more interested in milking revenue from the customer base, than investing in a quality product. There was a period of literally years, where it was junk.

However, now that it has been spun off and is no longer part of some big company, it now is working again, and each new release seems to bring improvements. Hopefully, they will reform their pricing model, which still charges a very hefty premium for backing up any Mac running Apple’s $19.99 server app. Still, it is now, again, a program that you should consider.

I am looking forward to seeing what this new version brings.
Like (2)
Version 13.0.0.230
peterpamn
22 August 2015
Retrospect is really a good backup product. Here is the coupon: http://couponcode0.com/category/vendors/retrospectinc
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Version 12.0.2.116
Hermie
28 March 2014
Works as advertised for *moi*. Minus one star for not sticking with the Instant Scan Off settings (done in the Retrospect Pref Pane nowadays) after updates. Nota Bene: I know there have been problems with the Instant Scan feature, but I have it switched off anyway because it doesn't fit with my work flow.
Like
Version 11.0.1.110
jol9904
05 March 2014
as a user until version 8, I strongly recommend to avoid using retrospect above version 8. For those looking for an alternative, I chose bacula.org : - designed for tape backup but usable with files/disks - client available for linux/macos/windows (macport client available) - server available for linux/macos , reported to work on windows - free and open-source - very customizable but hard to configure - once properly configured, forget it and use the web ui for restorations / unscheduled backups - fast incrementals, reasonable fulls, fast restores (using disks) - commercial version available with some plugins like incremental vmware/outlook/database backups etc. (i don't use it)
Like
Version 11.0.0.194
2 answer(s)
Hermie
Hermie
28 March 2014
If you haven't used Retrospect above version 8 then why are you giving it a half a star rating? The setup of the app has completely changed since then.
Like (1)
jol9904
jol9904
28 March 2014
hermie : i didn't say i didn't try Retrospect above version 8. I stopped using it after several trial periods of different versions above 9
Like (1)
signalprocessor
07 January 2014
After Time Machine's been acting up since 10.9, I thought it would be a good idea to check out Retrospect again. Retrospect used to be a trusted, well-rounded backup solution for power users. It has a lot of great features Time Machine lacks, including advertised support for de-duplication, support for Linux and Windows clients, data verification, and powerful scheduling features. After four days with it, here's what I can say about it: - Holy hell - The client's "instant scan" feature takes 50% CPU, constantly, for four days continuously, and had to be disabled via the command line - The client chewed up almost 1GB of memory - Clients that weren't added to a backup set reported they were backed up successfully even if they never were- not even a byte - De-duplication doesn't work at all. I had two clients with 200GB of the same iPhoto folder. Both clients using the same Media Set, the images were copied twice. (Actually, the resulting backup was about 1.5x the size of both clients) - Even though many clients were on the same network segment, Retrospect could only locate some of them. The rest had to be added manually - Just the scan before a backup starts took over 2 hours per client- this is before any data is even copied! - It's expensive. Good software is worth the money- especially for something critical like backup. Unfortunately, it's not remotely worth it. I hate leaving negative reviews, but Retrospect stinks of abandon-ware, likely on life support until it can be sold to yet another company or put to bed for good.
Like (8)
Version 10.5.0.145
3 answer(s)
bowlerboy-jmb
bowlerboy-jmb
03 February 2014
As a previous user of Retrospect when it was the only game in town, I appreciate your assessment. Every now and then, I, too, get the urge to wonder if the latest version is an improvement over the languished versions that came out in recent years, or just an old dog with fleas. I think you nailed it: give it a bone and let it rest in peace.
Like (3)
4KarmicJustice
4KarmicJustice
04 March 2014
What Bowlerboy_jmb said. :) Thanks for the effort and the report. Saved me a lot of time.
Like (1)
bowlerboy-jmb
bowlerboy-jmb
05 March 2014
I find the "Known Issues" section of Version 11.0.0.194 not only alarmingly honest (which should be respected) but also frightening dismaying. Perhaps the most succinct that can be said about Retrospect might be: Engine unreliable and we can't fix it. Console finicky and unresponsive to medication. Workaround: Use something else to backup your data.
Like (2)
Jweisbin
13 July 2013
I need tape backup and that's the only reason I use Retrospect. This program has tortured me for years. A backup program that's been plagued with serious bugs from day one. It's shameful. Current version 10.2: email notifications still broken randomly loses ability to connect to clients media sets say they are "in use" when they are not RetroISA uses more than 100% if CPU and has to be disabled via command line on clients (no other way) randomly, some folders get backed up multiple times with no de-duplication, which runs quickly through tapes
Like (3)
Version 10.2.0.201
1 answer(s)
Thresher-the-Shark
Thresher-the-Shark
20 September 2013
For an alternative Mac backup solution with tape support you may want to look at TOLIS Group's BRU Server if you haven't already.
Like (1)
Jjpong
11 July 2013
They can charge whatever they want. But $479? I'm shocked. I paid $49.99 for this backup application or something some 13 years ago.
Like
Version 10.2.0.201
1 answer(s)
S-R-
S-R-
14 November 2013
You're comparing the cheap-o Retrospect Desktop with one of the Server versions. Of course the latter costs more — it always has.
Like
Donmontalvo
12 December 2012
Can someone save me the trouble...does/can Retrospect 10 back up the Mac when no user is logged in? I mean, including all /Users folders?
Like
Version 10.0.1.105
3 answer(s)
Ean
Ean
13 December 2012
Retrospect 10 can't back up and _restore_ even when a user is logged in, so no. Unless you are backing up to vintage tape machines there is no need to suffer through this particular abomination.
Like (2)
Donmontalvo
Donmontalvo
13 December 2012
LOLOLOL...I share your thoughts. :) But I havea client asking if it's worth a look. I won't waste my time with it, hoping someone else has. Don
Like
Jon-Rasmussen
Jon-Rasmussen
27 March 2013
Yes. I do it every day. It works extremely well.
Like (1)
CFrag
24 July 2012
Retrospect used to be *the* backup software. Back when I used to backup to tape (and SCSI-Terminator Voodoo was part of the game), perhaps with an Iomega or TEAC tape drive. I just came back to see how it had evolved because I am looking for a better way to back up the mountain of image data accumulating on the server. Ugh. It seems Retrospect has not aged well. Or rather, it has not progressed much from when I used it. It may be that Retrospect is not aimed at small businesses. Or that the kind of backups I use now is not within Retrospect's core solution (for example, I have no high security requirements for my backups). In any event, it seems that I get better results (i.e. not having to mess with proprietary archive formats) using a combination of Time Machine, and simple mirroring to a remote RAID. YMMV.
Like (6)
Version 9.0.2.107
Peternsteinmetz
06 June 2012
Backing up to a proprietary format with an awful GUI - NO THANKS. I just barely managed to recover my backups from retrospect a few years ago and will not be going back.
Like (2)
Version 9.0.2.107
Jimblue
24 May 2012
isn't it funny how the once #1 and best backup software for years and years for the mac can so quickly fall by the wayside? i guess it just go to show once you are #1, you need to keep working very hard so that another company doesn't quietly come up behind you and make better software. never rest on your laurels -- never become complacent. this software may be back to being great again, but they lost me many years back. there's yet another thing for #1 companies to learn: once you lose somebody he might not ever look back. for old time's sake, i wish they reclaim their former glory.
Like (1)
Version 9.0.2.107
1 answer(s)
Jon-Rasmussen
Jon-Rasmussen
27 March 2013
I struggled with Retrospect from the time the were #1 to their purchases by EMC and Roxio. EMC almost killed them. I was hopeful that Roxio would be better but no. Now that they are on their own again they are doing well. They care about their customers they have updated their software numerous times in the past year. The options they have are very good. I'm now happy with them again and encourage others to invest in it. They will have to learn new ways of backing up because things have changed since they were backing up to tape 20 years ago. Look at them seriously again.
Like (2)
Islandmacman
23 April 2012
Bit the bullet, bought the upgrade and upgraded servers, desktops, the whole nine yards.... It works ok - the issue I sometimes see is a freeze during restores. A force quit and relaunch resolves it, but it just seems flaky at times. With all the force quitting I've been doing, the app never lost settings or users. Is that a good thing? lol But when it works, it works well. Not bad for the money.
Like
Version 9.0.0
1 answer(s)
avajames95
avajames95
26 September 2014
http://www.clickpencil.com/
Like
Islandmacman
21 November 2011
Be warned: this will hose your existing version 8 install, there is no turning back once you go to 9.
Like
Version 9.0.0
1 answer(s)
Islandmacman
Islandmacman
21 November 2011
Ended up doing a full Time Machine restore after 'trying' version 9.
Like
Donmontalvo
14 November 2011
Wow...Retrospect is now its own company. There may be hope after all! :) Don
Like (2)
Version 9.0.0
H-toelle
02 November 2011
In the case of Retrospect. There was a day when this program was used by me, on Mac & PC it was worth every dollar I spent. However there came a time when the writers of this App Just left their users with no tech support and no newer versions to use with newer OS s . Numerous calls and messages were met by silence or promises well into the future, which were not fulfilled. in one case the worst was years. In short Retrospect was the industry standard which fell to a point where it lost all respect as a choice of back up tool. May I suggest to the current writers of this version, Change the name and contact your former clients and attempt to undo some of the ill will which is out there. You need not contact me , because the damage caused was too great.
Like (3)
Version 9.0.0
1 answer(s)
Jon-Rasmussen
Jon-Rasmussen
27 March 2013
When EMC purchased them they killed it. Retrospect was lucky to survive. Now that they are on their own again they are worth a good look. It's now being updated supported and worth every penny. I have never called support and waited for more than 10 minutes. Also, I have never called and not received an answer that was a solution to my problem with the addition of suggestions to make my backups work better. Take a good look at it again.
Like (1)
ElizabethBrooke
19 February 2011
A useful and necessary application especially when you have precious files that you cannot afford to lose.
Like
Version 8.2.0.399
2 answer(s)
Donmontalvo
Donmontalvo
17 May 2011
It's all about the restore. Unfortunately this is an area where Retrospect fails all too often. I really don't suggest spending money on Retrospect. It's a waste of money on a marginally useful tool. Use Time Machine instead. Don
Like (2)
FTBZ
FTBZ
02 November 2011
@Donmontalvo Time Machine is not a Retrospect replacement solutions for enterprise. Crash Plan, PressSTORE, TimeNavigator or Amaware are some alternative solutions.
Like (1)
paulsrandall
02 February 2011
I've used Retrospect since OS 9 and this is by far the best version. It works so much faster than version 6. Restores could not be easier. I noticed comments below that restores of single files are difficult or impossible. Just use the search option and pick the file or files you want to restore and it puts the files in a folder under Macintosh HD or overwrites the file if you choose. I recommend it highly. It is simply unbelievable how much faster than version 6 was at doing backups. It never crashes, hangs or double launches. It is simply rock solid.
Like
Version 8.2.0.399
Madison-mac
06 December 2010
I'm still using Retrospect 5 on OS 9 but after listening just now to The Tightwad Tech podcast they talked about a neat open source backup program called BackupPC, which makes we want to try it out. http://www.thetightwadtech.com/2010/09/22/episode-13-backuppc/ Sounds like a good retrospect alternative for command line Mac geeks. Doesn't have a GUI :(
Like
Version 8.2.0.399
Islandmacman
23 November 2010
Changing my review to 1 star. There is an occasional bug that causes a script to forget which dataset it belongs to. Additionally, another bug forgets your sources as well. Of course when these things happen, your backups get screwed up, so FYI. Better yet, stay away unless you are desperate.
Like (1)
Version 8.2.0.399
Islandmacman
16 November 2010
I've been using Retrospect for a long time, perhaps too long. My main issues: I can't seem to do individual file restores, only entire backups of whole volumes are successfully restorable - and even then, the destination of the restore needs to be expendable because it will be erased. The app becomes unresponsive and I need to force quit if I don't do a full restore - if I need just one file for restore, forget it. It's all or nothing. I've also had entire backup sets disappear from the list - no error or problem is reported or indicated in the log. Luckily, relaunching the app brings it back, but the first time it did this I nearly freaked out. The interface is very awkward - some features appear to be redundant, such as setting filters. But the only place to make these changes is in preferences - if you do it anywhere else, the changes won't stick. This is by far the worst version of this software, and I'm kind of tied to it now, at least for a while. I only wish it worked as advertised, it has potential but needs an update.
Like (1)
Version 8.2.0.399
1 answer(s)
Amcarter3
Amcarter3
02 November 2011
I used Retrospect for many years up to about 2006. After the original company was bought, it went straight downhill. Weak updates, didn't keep up with Apple's OS and very weak tech support. It is NOT worth the money. I stopped using it and have not looked back. Apple's Time Machine is fantastic for instantly recovering individual files and folders. It contains every hour, every day and every week of my laptop's history for more than a year. I combine that with two clone backup hard disks managed by SuperDuper. It is low cost, easy to use and generates flawless clone backups.
Like (1)
Peternsteinmetz
16 October 2010
I recently had to recover some files from an old Retrospect backup, made with version 6. The one positive thing to say is that eventually the support team managed to get me set up to recover my files. The other positive thing is that the program is quite capable, it is just nearly impossible to efficiently use it. The troubles with Retrospect are legion, as noted by other reviewers. Major problem areas include: UI: The user interface is extremely un-mac like. Error messages are often obscure. Windows don't come to the front properly. Compatibility: The program uses its own drivers for block devices, which makes it a real pain to find a device it works with, particularly with optical drives. The new version 8 is incompatible with archives from older versions, like 6. Support: My initial requests for assistance were responded to, 4 business days later, with a minor modification of a standard response. The only way I was able to recover older backups was to install an old version of the software and then locate an older drive supported by that version of the software. The developer really ought to realize this dog has had his day. Provide some basic support for existing customers and come up with a responsible retirement schedule.
Like
Version 8.2.0.399
Jmahon24
03 July 2010
With the advent of cloning software and the use of inexpensive external hard drives, I feel Retrospect is not long for this world and on the way to its demise,
Like (1)
Version 8.2.0.377
Fishscale
03 July 2010
How come when I click "Buy" on this link: http://www.retrospect.com/products/software/retroexpresshd/ - I am sent to smithmicro.com? Is this a toast app or smithmicro? Are you all one and the same? A bit confusing and makes me a bit weary as well.
Like (1)
Version 8.2.0.377
2 answer(s)
-M-S-
-M-S-
03 July 2010
Smith Micro is a distributor/reseller. Dantz, then EMC, now Roxio is the developer. It looks like that's a really old app that no longer is available for purchase...
Like
Version 8.2.0.377
Donmontalvo
Donmontalvo
29 July 2010
Our tests show Retrospect fails more often than not on restores. Retrospect should just shut down development. Don
Like (2)
Version 8.2.0.399
mrsidoric
03 July 2010
AVOID RETROSPECT AT ALL COSTS. If your company depends on reliable and restorable backups - look elsewhere. Our production facility has invested thousands of dollars in site fees and upgrades, and whenever we really need a Retrospect backup to save our bacon - it FAILS. Retrospect is slow, buggy, unreliable in network settings, and unable to restore even simple storage sets. Gawd forbid you need to restore from an older storage set. There is no excuse for current owner, (insert name here), to keep milking the same dead cow -- move on and create something fresh, new, slim, and reliable. Use this product at your own peril.
Like (1)
Version 8.2.0.377
Filchescat
11 June 2010
EMC released the 8.x version of Retrospect for sale in early 2009, touting it as an enterprise level backup solution. For over a year it wallowed through version after version. For my part, it was totally useless - too many random problems. To their credit, except for one annoying exception, EMC's forum nannies addressed the problems - not necessarily fixed them, but at least acknowledged the dismal state of the application and suggested fix after fix - it was truly an extended beta test in the guise of a released product. Coincident with the release now of 8.2, which is still called a beta, EMC sold Retrospect to Roxio. Apparently support and engineering staff are included. Let's see if there's an improvement.
Like (2)
Version 8.2.0
1 answer(s)
Donmontalvo
Donmontalvo
03 July 2010
The only reason Retrospect was purchased a while back was for their "open file" backup technology. Retrospect was good in OS9 days. Since OSX came out, it's been very bad software. I just wish someone would stick a for into it...it's done. Don Montalvo, TX
Like (3)
Version 8.2.0.377
Lylehm
13 May 2010
Wow, quite a range of opinions here. I posted here last year when I began beta testing of Retrospect 8. I certainly had some issues in the beginning, many of which are now resolved. This week, I completed our transition away from BRU 1.2 (a fine product, just not for me). I have 18 clients (so far) backed up to the Retro server on our LAN - a mix of Mac and Win Servers. Backup performance looks good. With a Xeon 2.8 Quad as the server (with FC connected RAID systems for storage - no tapes), I'm seeing throughput averaging around the 1GB/min mark. The performance numbers are a bit erratic, apparently affected by client specs, and number and size of files on the source. The peak was an OS X client (also a 2.8 Quad xserve) clocking in at an overall 2.1 GB/min on a 51 GB backup. Our servers are all connected to the same HP Procurve 5400 series switch via two bonded 1Gbit Enet ports. Although the new user interface has some quirks (try sorting on the Performance column of Activities, for instance), it's a big improvement over Retrospect 6. The grooming feature makes our backup strategies simpler to define - no more regular backup-set recycling needed (as in 6). Having the admin GUI as a separate client, meshes with our goal of having none of our servers logged into an account. My favorite improvement over 6 is the ability to run multiple simultaneous backups. I still try to limit the overlap, and have backups split between two RAIDs to minimize drive thrashing. There's certainly room for improvement. I encourage users to post feedback to the appropriate forum and file bug reports. The EMC guys seem genuinely motivated to make a good backup product. They've acted quickly on my bug reports and provided good feedback. Someday I'd like to see integrated tools for building restoration boot disks. An easy-to-use slim restore client for end users would be welcome too (browser-based perhaps). So, give Retrospect another try. The current release really does work! Just make sure you put your catalog files on a volume with plenty of extra space. Cheers.
Like (1)
Version 8.1.626.1
Scotty321
13 December 2009
After 8 months of total hell with unreliable and incomplete backups with Retrospect 8 (see my posts in the EMC Retrospect 8 forum under the name "scotty321" for all of my hell with the product, along with the hundreds of other users who are also having problems with this product), I have FINALLY found my replacement backup software and am now gladly & happily saying goodbye to Retrospect for good! I am now using ChronoSync and ChronoAgent for my backup software. I'm using them successfully at multiple different office locations, including one office location that has 17 Macs on their network. ChronoSync and ChronoAgent work absolutely flawlessly on a nightly basis to multiple external hard drives. In fact, ChronoSync and ChronoAgent do EVERY SINGLE THING that Retrospect 8 does (except backup Windows clients)... but they do it elegantly, they do it with better error reporting, they do it with a much better user interface, and they do it with significantly better pricing as well. You can backup an entire network of 25 Macs for only $190, with no upgrade fees ever! So, goodbye for life, Retrospect... you have burned way too many bridges with me and have caused me way too much grief for any one person to have in their lifetime.
Like (3)
Version 8.1.626.1
Ooshnoo
29 October 2009
This software is awful. Haven't been able to get a single backup since I installed it, as it always locks up when loading a tape. The Retrospect Engine then hogs the cpu at over 90% and when you try and force quit the engine, the whole server locks up. This was installed on a brand new fresh installation of Leopard server, so I know the system is fine. POS software.
Like (2)
Version 8.1.662.1
Der~bot~haus
09 October 2009
So advanced it is years beyond HD's. Doesn't know what they are. Can't connect to LTO3/LTO4's either as they are also "not advanced". Can't recover to a computer reliably either. My company has used Retrospect for years. It has always kinda sucked. But it got the job done, slowly. Now it can't get the job done and I am starting to think about the cloud as a "quicker" way to backup. And I am saying a T1 is faster than this. How many thousand of dollars in maintenance have I spent on this turd? Way too many money's.
Like (1)
Version 8.1.662
me-98
09 October 2009
Why is the preference pane still 32-bit? Come on!
Like
Version 8.1.662
Jan13
15 September 2009
As I do agree 100% with STEVE HOWE, I did try this new version and it works just fine on my SONY Tape Drive ( SCSI on Mac G5 ).... I think, that I am going to be brave and spend some $$$ for BluRay DVD drive from LaCie as source for backups. 50 Gig will be much more then my SONY Tape drive and I am crossing fingers that it is going to work ... I will post my result as soon as I find out ...
Like (3)
Version 8.1.526
1 answer(s)
-M-S-
-M-S-
16 September 2009
I'm really curious to hear how this works out -- let us know!
Like
Version 8.1.526
Steve-Howe
11 August 2009
Too little too late. Having come from a Retrospect background in the past, I always try to be agnostic in the backup tools I use, well you have to be. No single product can do every job, so, a wide knowledge of tools to do the many different jobs that various clients may require is fairly essential. From offsite duplication, archival, synchronization, de-duplication, DLM/ILM systems, Disk to Disk to Disk or Disk to Disk to Tape, Virtual Tape Libraries and devices, SAN's and NAS systems, backup and recovery, backup plans, redundancy or resilience even Legal and Data Compliant systems including Sarbanes and international data transmission compliancy. The requirement list is endless but I have yet to find one product that can do everything for everyone and do it ALL exceptionally well. For me Retrospect originally sat in the home to SMB market, for those people that might have a tape drive or library, it never really got any further. BUT that doesn't mean it can't do it! up until now I have seen it backing up clients, servers, RAIDs in all sorts of manners and do it well, the Mac community took this product far beyond its original vision but it handled the punishment well, the problem is other products came along and offered more or the same and were much more simple to backup, why send an engineer out for half a day 'tweeking' retrospect to do AB & Z when you can deploy a solution in fraction of the time with a product designed to meet the modern needs of a backup solution. So Retrospect came, and never really went, it lingered, in my opinion it was that guest at the party that didn't know when to leave, the guy that talks about a load of crap and consumes the free food and drink but doesn't really have anything to offer in return. Retrospect became dormant, many mac support companies were stuck with it, but didn't know of any other option, they had either invested so much time in getting to know the product that anything else was too much of an investment or risk, or they didn't believe any other product was available for the Mac that really delivered on what it offered. The updates slowed, and devices stopped working. More and more alternatives came along, PresStore, Atempo, NetVault (Bakbone) and many other contenders, none of which seemed to take advantage of the situation, yet many offer competitive cross grades! I bet you may not have known that. They all offer different solutions and alternative features, but most can easily replace Retrospect if you let them, yes you have to let them into your company first before they can help. So along comes Retrospect 8 and what do we have? To be honest an application which has some nice ideas but fails in so many ways, that it didn't come as a surprise. It's fundamentally an unstable product that manages to over complicate things. Remember backup should be simple, know your Data, know its Information and back it up! It can be enough to write a backup strategy for a client If your looking at a Retrospect 8 box right now or you have installed it, then good luck, I am sure EMC will eventually release enough patches to make it at least stable enough for prolonged use. But at the moment having seen it consistently crash on both clean (new) and existing machines. No warning, no reporting option and even on occasions no log entries on the system to tell you it crashed! I have seen it crash and wipe out its plans, forget it's sources and even completely screw existing plans up. Crashing during backup and corrupting a catalogue, even not crashing and deciding to recycle a backup when I didn't ask it too! If it was stable then we get onto the over complicated areas of the product, you specify both destinations and sources in the sources section! why I have no idea, file paths are not clear so if you have 2 folders with similar or the same names (backup/backups/backup etc) you will need to double check them as Retrospect has enough quirks to make you question your own sanity. Then we have the excellent way that you start creating a script but then you close it to define it further, with the very dangerous fact that you can modify scripts in a list without actually opening them!! If you were one of the early ones to move away from Retrospect being your only product of choice then you will be pleased to hear that you, like me made a wise decision. If you were contemplating it, but never did or where clinging onto the slim hope that EMC may actually take their product and market serious enough to warrant releasing a product worthwhile, then carry on with your hope or look at alternatives because you will be waiting for quite some time.
Like (11)
Version 8.1.150
mike-evangelist
26 July 2009
Like many others, I've been waiting for years for an overhaul of Retrospect. Version 6 and its crashy behavior and clunky interface with (seemingly) hundreds of separate windows drove me crazy every time I had to reconfigure or use it. Retrospect 8 is a huge improvement in almost every way. The interface is much easier to navigate. The separation of the 'engine' from the control console is a great idea (once you get used to it). Setting up scripts and monitoring what's happening is infinitely easier. And so far for me, it just works. But perhaps best of all, after years of neglect and stagnation, it appears that EMC is actually taking this product seriously. They've moved quickly to fix bugs and respond to criticism of the initial release. I also commend them on having reasonable upgrade pricing; it's so rare these days. Retrospect is a powerful backup tool. If you're looking for one-click backups, this ain't for you. But if you have multiple computers and terabytes of data to backup and keep track of, it's a great too.
Like (1)
Version 8.1.150
2 answer(s)
mike-evangelist
mike-evangelist
26 July 2009
One more thing... They are not kidding when they say G4s will be slow when used as a server for Retrospect 8. I have a 1GHz MDD that I've used as my main backup server for a while, but it's straining under the load. The actually backups work OK, doing about 450 MB/minute. But when scanning a large volume or matching to existing catalogs, it takes a very long time. It will work fine for me until I can replace that backup machine, but it's something to consider when planning your backup system.
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Version 8.1.150
anonymous-heron-1577
anonymous-heron-1577
15 September 2009
You actually managed to get Retrospect 8 to back *anything* up? How many virgins did you need to sacrifice? I've been considering selling my soul just to get it to even properly enumerate the files on our Windows 2003 server-ONCE-so I could, maybe, possibly, back them up. Retrospect has never been a "happy" Mac application, but for the most part 6.x worked. Version 8 has consistently been nothing but trouble and, IMO, an enormous waste of time and money.
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Version 8.1.526
Itty
23 July 2009
They really are trying hard to make me not buy this upgrade. Still no DVD support. I have a bank of DVD burners just for Retrospect. But this new version still does not support optical media and will not, apparently, any time soon.
Like (2)
Version 8.1.150
Delugach
30 June 2009
I have used Retrospect in various forms and versions since November 1998. I abandoned it about a year ago and have never looked back. I always suspected that it may be suited for sysadmins in very large enterprises, but more and more it seemed a clunky and confusing solution to the (important) general backup problem. Its only really valuable feature was compressed backups to save space. I use Time Machine and Super Duper and don't really seem to need anything else. Yes, compressed backups would be nice, but not worth the hassle of figuring out how Retrospect works. An unpredictable or confusing backup is worse than none at all. I'm sure the Retrospect folks have a perfectly clear concept in their minds but it was never clear to me. Sorry.
Like (4)
Version 8.1.148
Itty
29 June 2009
They seem to be going out of their way to get rid of small-size users. I've been a customer since the '80's when the original product was called DiskFit. But now the single-user has to jump through hoops to make what should be a simple installation. Then there's the overly complex interface. Chalk me up to another customer lost to ChronoSync.
Like (5)
Version 8.1.148
1 answer(s)
Sherman-Wilcox
Sherman-Wilcox
23 July 2009
ChronoSync (bootable), Time Machine (just because), and CrashPlan (off-site) -- my backup solution.
Like
Version 8.1.150
Jim-Weisbin
19 May 2009
As of version 8.0736, still does not work at all on my Mac Pro running OS X 10.5.6 (Leopard) server. I used the "wizard" to start an immediate backup either to File or to Disk. It appears as though something's "happening" (a yellowish "blob" "swings" into the "activities" bar from somewhere unknown - very Microsoftish), but no script actually runs. Also, the date of the "scheduled" backup for that run is 1969 - huh? Tried to schedule it on the server itself, as well as from another computer running OS X 10.5.6 Leopard (not server), same thing, nothing happens. I was able to get something to happen on my machine which is not running server software, but after it starts the script it immediately crashes. In addition, the interface is dreadful. For example, say you are setting up a File type backup and are prompted as to where to store the catalogue. You want to make a new folder? Go ahead, but you have to make it, then close out of that dialogue and go back to actually use that folder. The disclosure triangles to the left of folders are sometimes invisible, and the interface does not look anything like Mac OS X. For example, if you want to get to your desktop folder, you have to navigate to /Users//Desktop. Ugh! I called tech support and was told that I get one "free" service call. They gave me a ticket number and then put me on hold for 45 minutes. I gave up after that. Probably the worst "release" version I have ever seen, ever ever evr.
Like (3)
Version 8.0.736
Adonsa
13 May 2009
I've been using Dantz Retrospect off and on for years. I don't do any of the feature stuff, I just back up, and get done, and it works. Below this comment are a lot of 1 and 2 star postings/complaints. Above this email, and dated more recently, is a long list of bug fixes. Are those of you who posted complaints, going to bounce your complaints against the bug fixes and revise your comments/ratings? Now that I'm running System Leopard, I'd like to get back into Retrospect, if I can figure out what Retrospect Express is upgradable to. Although quite a good application, Retrospect has gone through a wierd, convoluted history - specifically, various versions and upgrade for money schemes. Well, it's Dantz-Retrospect, right? Or did they change ownership AGAIN? How many owners has retrospect had so far? Is the owner change history longer than the version revision history? Just kidding. But, it might be nice to know who the next owner will be.
Like
Version 8.0.733
1 answer(s)
Msl
Msl
19 May 2009
Actually, its been EMC Retrospect for quite a while now - EMC acquired Dantz in Oct 2004.
Like
Version 8.0.736
Stugots
21 April 2009
I've used Retrospect for years, and tried most of the 8.0 Betas. Retrospect 8.0 is *not* yet ready for production use. It was rushed to market. Check their support forums (there are two, one for general questions and one for bugs), you'll see it has a lot of problems. Network performance is extremely slow, optical devices don't work, scripts get randomly mangled, and it crashes a lot for some users. When they've debugged it, this may be a great product. They've dreamed up some nice new features, and the new UI may one day be great. But for now, stay away.
Like (4)
Version 8.0.608
Filchescat
21 April 2009
It looks like this is still 8.0608.1, which has been available to the public since 4-8-09. As mentioned by others, user interface is different (change is good?) than the old reliable version 6 iterations, but the product itself is still beta quality. I've had problems with it silently quitting, not recognizing configured backup locations, especially on network storage devices. EMC tech support is fairly responsive, but looks to be overwhelmed by similar complaints. They like comments sent to their forum where they are kicked around by other uses, as if a group session will help solve problems - like a beta test group. Keep trying, EMC, is all I can say.
Like (2)
Version 8.0.608
Ean
21 April 2009
Tested version 8.0.608 (newer than what is listed here) with a single server and several clients. Can't import scripts from former versions (v6). Can't connect to any clients--before or after updating client software. Forget about updating clients from the server. Had to downgrade the client machines I tested as v6 displayed some weirdness with the newer clients. Since I couldn't actually connect to clients, I can't review script creation or execution. All in all, it feels like an early beta. Despite the problems with v6, it's definitely not worth upgrading at this point. Besides, the upgrade to v8 with 20 clients is nearly what I paid for v6 with 10 clients some years ago. The multi-threaded engine could make it worth the price, but I am unable to test it if I can't actually connect to clients...
Like (2)
Version 8.0.594
victorbishop
16 April 2009
I used Retrospect and Remote for years. The fact is, it has grown stale. Try Personal Backup from Intego. It goes well beyond in functionality and reliability.
Like (1)
Version 8.0.594
3 answer(s)
-M-S-
-M-S-
21 April 2009
Is Personal Backup good for enterprise environments? Can I manage all my client backups remotely with PB?
Like
Version 8.0.608
victorbishop
victorbishop
21 April 2009
Yes. You can. It kind of picks up where TimeCapsule stops. Backup to multiple drives, different formats, across a network, etc. You can build scripts easily to fit your environment, schedule and needs. You can even incorporate encryption.
Like (1)
Version 8.0.608
-M-S-
-M-S-
21 April 2009
Ah, thanks. I haven't used Personal Backup since back in the day before Intego bought it. The app might need a name change to communicate better that it's not just for grandmas ;)
Like
Version 8.0.608
Lylehm
25 March 2009
I've only just recently installed 8.0.594. Ultimately, I'll test this will multiple Mac and Win servers backing up to a 9TB FC-RAID. I'm just so impressed by the new GUI, I wanted to mention it now instead of waiting for the test results. EMC waited quite a while do anything with Retrospect Mac after it was purchased from Dantz. However, once the public beta started, the speed of bug fix releases was spritely. From that pace, and the lively interactions on the EMC beta forum, it's apparent they are taking this product seriously. I'm cautiously optimistic and look forward to posting some real world results.
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Version 8.0.594
Naoh
28 October 2008
For what it's worth, Retrospect is still receiving commitment from EMC2. However, the 'old' Retrospect will soon be retired and Retrospect X will take over. (That is what they plan to call it, according to the blog written by the chief developer.) The plan is to integrate the Retrospect product into EMC2's other backup products. A PDF that outlines the planned features can be found at the following link: http://www.emcinsignia.com/assets/ds_retrox_en.pdf
Like (1)
Version 6.1.230
1 answer(s)
Donmontalvo
Donmontalvo
07 January 2009
That's bitter sweet news - we have recently migrated our clients and their satellite offices to Backup Exec. Over 40 copies of Retrospect retired...over 40 copies of Backup Exec deployed. No issues after dozens of test restores, not a hiccup with Backup Exec. I'm not happy about it, as it's one Windows application I needed to learn (or get better at as I was a bit familiar with it). I wish EMC had been more open and up front about their road map. That they were not was enough to scare many of us away. Unfortunately once we move, it's hardly likely we would move back. Don
Like (1)
Version 8.0b1
Fhals
03 January 2008
Using it back to System 7, Retrospect saved my life for more times than I can count. I think, everybody who uses this product in a Mac environment with a lot of machines and professional tape libraries has no other choice. Frequent driver updates include all actual storage products one can use. Simply become the king of users asking you for the origin of a file they have accidently altered weeks ago. Switch back to a mountable volume before some major problems went in. Get log files about any possible problem during the backup. Scan terabytes of backups for specific files and retreive the one of a special date. Easily build backup scripts around a whole network, daily differnt, multiple file selectors, encrypt the traffic and a whole bunch more of features. Don't know, why so much people are bashing this product (is it, because there is no choice?). By the way: How much commercial apps served a free upgrade from Tiger to Leopard? Only con: Sometimes get stuck in a reload of a new tape library and needs the actual tape reloaded manually (depends on the library product). If you need a cheap single desktop backup on another disk hang on CCC, if you need more, Retrospect is your friend.
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Version 6.1.138
1 answer(s)
Stugots
Stugots
21 April 2009
"Don't know, why so much people are bashing this product (is it, because there is no choice?)." No, it's because it doesn't work. It's still very unstable and hard to use.
Like (2)
Version 8.0.608
Abates25
08 November 2007
I've been using retrospect as the backup solution with all my clients, ranging from single-user consultants to 70+ person organizations, and have always been thrilled with it. Unlike others here, I don't upgrade any mission critical machines to the newest OS release until after the first couple months in the wild and, by following that mantra, have never had any problems. It can connect to a host of clients through a variety of methods, the backup sets can be modified as I need, and the device compatibility list grows by the week.
Like
Version 6.1.138