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I Really Dont Know Clouds At All:P - Blather. Rants. Repeat.
A Møøse once bit my sister ...
I Really Dont Know Clouds At All:P
They're up there.

Lots of them.

And, like most things in the air, they're largely free.

In the current iteration of Windows, they're integrated into your daily computer use. In my Windows 8-then-10 File Manager, I'd see this thing right on the sidebar, above the CD drive, called OneDrive. It looked like it was just another piece of magnetic storage actually attached to the laptop. More than once, I saved things to it by accident, because they defaulted there for one reason or another.

OneDrive, presented by Microsoft, is not to be confused with Google Drive, which comes with Anything G you might have (mainly Gmail and Chrome for me). It, too, appears to act like a real piece of physical storage. Lest you Macaholics feel left out, there's also the iCloud, which I experience in my phone world.  Browsers get in on the act, too; Firefox, for one doesn't store files in a cloud, but it does sync your bookmarks, add-ons and such to any other computer where you're using the Big Mo.

But the big clouds- OneDrive and Google Drive- they're all up there, with gigs and gigs available to you for no cost, and to some extent they're competing. The storage space is a loss-leader- to get you in their Store, to make you dependent on their Siri, or Cortina, or whatever Google's virtual assistant is or will be called.

They're also about as useful as a tit on a boar.


In theory, you should be able to use these virtual gigs of available space for backup. Because actual physical hard drives fail- or, just as often, are fine but either get wiped during offsite repairs or simply never return to you. The former was Eleanor's situation last summer; the latter is mine, now. We both tried. She used an external drive which, it appeared, was syncing all her documents, pictures, music every time she plugged it in. It wasn't; and some of what it did save wound up encrypted and is as good as useless.

I had days, almost weeks, to prepare for Backup Time when Tobor began his flickering power spiral of death. Much of it, I saved to my own external drive, but I also put some large files into various clouds. In particular, I copied my entire ECF folder to OneDrive.

Wassat? Only every PDF petition, schedule, official form I've filed in every bankruptcy since October 2005. These .pdfs are not "the originals," nor do they contain full Socials or other really bad thefty information, but it's always been a very handy way of quickly retrieving any document from the past decade when a client or somebody needed one.

And it was backed up to OneDrive. I did it; I watched it. I saw how much space it took up.

Then, yesterday, I needed one of those documents. I can access OneDrive from any computer once I tell Bill'n'Steve who I am. It promptly displayed all my folders up there, including the ECF ones, including all the client subfolders from Aegis to Zuccato (possibly not their real names).

But here's the thing. Every time the specialty BK software uploads something to a court, it creates a new sub-subfolder for that session's documents, including the .pdfs, logs of the session, text files and such- and names it something unique- Filed{Complete} for the original petition filing for that client, then a time-stamped name, like FileX{2016-01-10@1507} for each subsequent set of filings in that case.

They're all there.

They're all empty.

Wanna see one?


Now this is through my apparently non-upgradeable Windows 7 machine, so I have to do it through the browser, but you can see that Anonymous, Inc. is there, with all of its filings.  But O, those 0s. Let's drill down:


Yup. Going, going, gone goodbye.

If you're going to create a utility to sync data to a cloud drive, why in the name of Sam Dell would you not sync the subfolders within subfolders?

I found this out early in the afternoon; I'd worked from home earlier, due to threats of OMGSNOWMAGEDDON finally hitting our part of town. (It snowed sideways for about 20 minutes, about an inch stuck, it was sunny by 2:30. I don't understand THOSE clouds, either:P)  When I made it to the office and discovered my booboo, I didn't know how much onsite redundant backup I'd done.

Turned out, a lot.  In October, maybe inspired by the discovery that Eleanor's "automatic" backup was neither, I'd copied that entire ECF folder to an external drive, including all those sub-subfolders.  So all I'm missing are cases I filed from mid-October until I started using this old 7 machine temporarily in mid-December (maybe two or three), and any later filings in any of those cases.  It will take me infinitely longer to try to recover those drabbles than to just order them from the court when and as needed.  Presumably, they do a better job of backing up the "OFFICIAL FILED" versions of those .pdfs on their servers.

So, in the end, a small but stressful lesson learned: don't count on big companies to keep you from big problems.
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