This is the first time that this has happened to me. Sadly, my first backup copy also was TOTALLY empty. There were over 200 MB of data in my second backup, but I have lost a week’s worth of valuable work.
Looking at the orginal database, only Database DevonTHINK-1.database seems to be affected by this - it shrunk from 1 MB to 4KB.
Probably the best advice I can give is a recommendation that when you’ve been adding lots of new files, it’s a good idea to stretch, yawn and run the Verify & Repair routine, followed immediately by Backup & Optimize – and run those routines before you shut down DEVONthink for the night. Of course, it’s a good idea to make a backup copy of your database to an external drive or CD (but NEVER make a copy while DEVONthink is open).
Do those things habitually, and the likelihood of losing data approaches zero. For example, if the two routines have been run before closing and DT crashes and corrupts the database, no problem – you’ve got a good backup file that can be restored. (But if DT crashes on quit, that’s probably a sign that something is wrong with the System, an application or haxie conflict, or the hard disk directory, etc.)
The automatic backup option does currently only create backups on startup and therefore the daily option might not create as many backups as intended if you keep DEVONthink open all the time. However, version 1.9.2 will improve this.
In addition, there was a rare but severe bug related to “Backup & Optimize” in v1.9 which was (almost) immediately fixed in v1.9a and v1.9.1 (coming today) will fix all other known issues but none of them was critical.
I’ve always updated DT immediately, so I’ve been running 1.9a for a while. I guess the problem is that if it only backs up on startup, well, I don’t need to restart very often. That is probably the reason.
Knowing how this works will allow me to adjust by making manual backups every day I add some critical information.
It would be great to be able to set DT to create backups on a daily basis, provided it is smart enough to know that if the computer is sleeping at its preferred time, it will do a backup (if neeed) on wake from sleep (or at least pop up a dialog to say “Want a backup? You’re overdue!”
I look forward to future upgrades even as I mourn my lost data. I still like DT too much to ditch it for StickyBrain!
You can manually control backups in DT 1.9a, and I’ve been in the habit of doing that for a long time.
Especially after adding lots of new content, and when shutting DT down for the night, I run these two tools in succession: Verify & Repair (you should get a no error report), then Backup & Optimize. DT 1.9a will rotate three sets of backups in your database folder – most recent, older and oldest.
I think I remember that DT PE 1.9a is smart enough not to replace a good backup with a corrupt backup during the Backup and Optimize procedure.
And, of course, when DT isn’t open, I will periodically copy my database over to an external drive.