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Does File-by-File backup use Volume Shadow Copy?

I would like to know if the file by file backup uses the volume shadow copy.  Specifically, I'd like to automate the backup of my Mozella Thunderbird profile, but I don't want to have to shut down Thunderbird to enable it.  If I backup active files, I just wonder if VSS is used to insure a coherent file.  This is on Windows 10 Pro.


  • The software does use the VSS to do the backup.

    And can you describe your question more detail?

    We do not quite understand what do you want to do.

  • I want to have it back up my Thunderbird email profile, but I don't want to have to manually close Thunderbird before each backup.  I just wanted to know that it uses VSS to insure I get a good snapshot of the profile and the backup doesn't have missing or corrupt files.  I understand that it will be a snapshot in time for open files.

  • If you want to backup your Email you need to export them then you can do the backup operation.

  • That sounds like VSS is not used.  I have successfully backed up and restored the Thunderbird profiles using Acronis File Backup, so I know it's possible.

  • edited December 2015

    "If you want to backup your Email you need to export them then you can do the backup operation."

    but JohnWill was talking Thunderbird, not Email (Outlook).

    VSS is surely used, and ensures a snapshot of the file system, not just one coherent file.

    But, no one knows whether the Thunderbird files are consistent among them at snapshot time

    Here's a description of VSS:

    1. VSS sends a freeze to all registered “writers,” such as, Exchange, Outlook, and SQL Server.
    2. Writers flush their state to disk.
      Note: If
      an application isn't a known writer then it may or may not work. The
      application isn't given a chance to flush its state to disk. The
      snapshot will be exactly as it exists on disk.
    3. VSS creates snapshot.

    Here is a description of how to backup Thunderbird. https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/profiles-tb. To quote:

        In Thunderbird, the profile stores two main sets of items. First, it
    stores your local mail, and possibly copies of messages that reside on
    the mail server...

        To back up your profile, first close Thunderbird if it is open and then copy the profile folder to another location.

    And see here http://www.groovypost.com/howto/manually-backup-thunderbird-emails/, in response #2 : Thunderbird should be closed when this is done.

    It will therefore be possible with Backupper the same way as with A.TIH, as long as one does not stress Thunderbird whilst doing the backup. Interpreting the second quote, A.TIH may fail on an open Thunderbird, but not always, and rarely. The same for Backupper, will rarely fail.


  • I know how Thunderbird backup is documented to work.  I've used my method for years, and I've used the backups created a few times when issues arose with TB, specifically when there was a bug that suddenly caused TB to choke because of some unknown profile issue.  In every case, the backup that was created using Acronis File Backup was able to restore the backed up version and it was usable.

  • edited December 2015

    So will Backupper do. VSS does not ensure an always consistent profile, as long as Thunderbird or any application does not register in VSS. In practice I consider it working.

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