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New Backup for GO Software Programs

The original backup program for Rent Master and Ausbroker ...

  1. was originally designed to allow backup to floppy disk drives
  2. and then the option to backup to LS-120 and/or Zip-100 drives was added
  3. and then the option to backup to CD/R or CD/RW was added
  4. end then, finally, the option to backup to USB memory stick was added

This made the backup program a lot more complicated than it now needs to be so I have changed the backup to work internally within Rent Master and/or Ausbroker and we no longer use the original, external backup program. (This new method is compatible with the previous method so you can still restore any old backups).

Now you just ...

  1. Click on the FLOPPY DISK ICON (or click on the FILE menu and then choose the BACKUP TO USB option)
  2. If no USB drive is detected then you will get an error message

  3. If at least one USB drive is detected then you will be given the option to select which drive you want to use

  4. Click on the OK button to start the backup or the CANCEL button to abort the process.
  5. Then you will get a black "MS-DOS" or "Command Prompt" screen while your database is zipped up (compressed)

  6. Then you will notice some messages flashing in yellow in the bottom left hand corner of your screen while the database backup is copied to a backup folder on your local hard disk

  7. Then, when the backup has completed you will get a message box pop up to tell you want was done

NOTE: Make sure that you check the file names, file sizes and dates of the files listed in the final message box to make sure that all of the files have today's date on them and that the ZIP files are about 10% to 25% of the size of the original file (eg an original file size of 23Mb - as shown - might generate a zip file of 5.4Mb in size).

NOTE: We can re-enable the original backup if there is a good reason why you want to keep using it but the new backup is much simpler to use and more foolproof.

NOTE: You cannot backup or restore your database if it is open so EVERYONE must be out of the program BEFORE you do a backup or restore.


New Restore for GO Software Programs

Now you just ...

  1. Click on the FILE menu and
  2. Then choose the RESTORE FROM USB option
  3. If no USB drive is detected then you will get an error message

  4. If at least one USB drive is detected then you will be given the option to select which drive you want to restore from

  5. Click on the OK button to start the restore or the CANCEL button to abort the process.
  6. Then you will be shown a list of files that you can restore from - both from the USB drive and your local hard drive - choose the file that you want to restore from

  7. Click on the OK button to start the restore or the CANCEL button to abort the process.
  8. You will then be shown a message to allow you to confirm what you are doing (before it's too late) so click on the YES button to start the backup or the NO button to abort the process.

  9. Then you will get a black "MS-DOS" or "Commmand Prompt" screen while your database is copied and un-zipped (decompressed)

  10. Then, when the restore has completed you will get a message box pop up to tell you want was done

NOTE: Do some inquiries to make sure that the data that you are now accessing is what you were hoping to get after the restore - as once you start processing again then to go back to a different backup will lose any changes.


Copying to a Different Computer Hard Drive

These instructions are for the information of tecnhical support peoploe rather than a normal user as you need to understand the directory and network structures of your computers before you will know what the correct command should look like.

There is a program supplied with Rent Master and Ausbroker (upd.exe) which will enable you to copy all of the backup files to another computer as long as you have a drive letter mapped to the remote computer's hard drive.

As an example the command to copy only the ZIPPED backup files from your C: drive to the X: drive might look like this ...

In the first instance I am copying only the ZIP files from the backup folder under the main program folder
In the second instance I am copying the ZIP files and the access database files from the main program folder
In the third instance I am copying the whole main program folder (programs and data and backups)

Instead of using the upd.exe program we supply you could also use trhe old MS-DOS XCOPY program, the current COPY program or Microsoft's ROBOCOPY program instead or any other program.

You can create a shortcut on the desktop so that someone has to click on the icon for the backup to occur but it would be better to create a windows scheduled task to do it every night at 10:00pm (as an example).

NOTE: If you are running this via a scheduled task bear in mind that any drive letters that you have mapped when you log onto the PC may not be mapped when you run a scheduled task. So the scheduled task should run a MS-DOS command file which first maps the network drive
eg NET USE X: \\SERVER\DATA /PERSISTENT:YES
and then the backup command
eg upd.exe C:\rentmstr\backup\*.zip x:\rent_backup /a/u/s/q
and then possibly a directory command directed to your printer
eg dir x:\rent_backup\*.* /s > \\MyPc\HPLaserjet


Daily Backups

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Your data is valuable and you should back it up (make a copy) regularly. We now only support backup to USB memory sticks. If you want to keep backing up to CDRW disks we can renable this for you BUT ... We STRONGLY recommend that you use USB memory sticks to backup your data as they are now the quickest, smallest, easiest and most reliable method as well as being the cheapest (except for CDs which ARE cheaper but MUCH slower).

How often you backup your data depends on how often you make changes to it. As a rule you should backup once a day - to a different USB memory stick each day, You would label these disk sets

Last thing every Monday evening you would backup to the Monday USB sticks, on Tuesday: to the Tuesday USB sticks etc.
If you always backup to the SAME disk (or set of USB sticks) each day and something happens to that one disk (or set of USB sticks) then you DON'T have a backup AT ALL! That's why you MUST have multiple copies.

You should store these backup USB sticks at another location as, if there is a fire at your office and the USB sticks and the computer are all there then, again, you won't have a backup. A fire proof safe is NOT sufficient protection as the USB sticks may not catch fire but they will MELT!

You MUST also make sure that the DO DAILY HARD DISK BACKUP AS WELL option is ticked on the backup screen.

Note: If you choose to backup to CD then buy one of those CD cases which store 10 to 20 CDs in plastic sleeves inside a wallet covered with wetsuit type material. These types of cases give good protection to the CDs and you can keep them all together instead of using the standard CD "jewel" cases that you buy the CDs in. Keep the CD case in your car and only take it out each evening to do the backup and then put the CD back into the case and put the case back into your car.

If you use USB memory sticks then clip them all onto one keyring and, again, keep this in your car and only bring it into the office to backup and then put it back into your car (or perhaps your purse or your pocket).


Alternate Disk Labelling Method

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For some applications (eg Payroll) you may not be using the program every day but you may only be using it one day a week. Obviously in this case you need a different method of labelling the USB sticks so we suggest that you use.... Note that we have included a week 5 set as some months will have 5 Mondays (or 5 Wednesdays etc).

End of Month Backups

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In addition we also suggest that, IMMEDIATELY prior to closing off the month, you backup your data to a different set of USB sticks marked... Note that both our Rent Master and Ausbroker software (as part of the month end menu) have an option to save the database using a name in the format RentYYMM or BrokYYMM where YY is the year and MM is the month such that if you are closing July 2014 it would save a backup into the file RENT1407.Mdb or BROK1407.Mdb for you. This is done PRIOR to the final close off and so you can always go back and open this file to print off any reports that you have misplaced or forgotten to print.