CaptainJustice Show full post »
metta
Thank you, Sean, for your additional feedback and clarification.

Very much appreciate the warnings about the potential for speed and data issues with network and/or USB drives!
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Manni
shatcher wrote:
Dave, Metta,

One of the things we worked on with V9 is the speed of access to files. As Harlan said a few months ago "TheBrain 9 depends on the access to the database being fast - if it is slow TheBrain will be slow. This is why slow drives (such as network drives, USB drives, or other drives where an additional layer is added) can have an impact."
http://forums.thebrain.com/post/v-215-running-extremely-slow-on-windows-9288741?pid=1300017857


We also recommend against storing Brains on removable media, or network drives, because it is very easy to corrupt the data, or mess up the links. If TheBrain 9 is started without access to the network drive, or without the USB drive plugged in, this will cause data issues.

Cheers, Sean


Hi Sean,

Thanks for this, but again I think it illustrates the unfortunate shift from using TheBrain as a presentation tool as well in V8 to using TheBrain as a mind mapping tool only in V9.

I use TheBrain to design interactive presentations. I like it better than Powerpoint, especially for long presentations (I do workshops that can last up to 3 days).

The presentation mode is crucial for me, so until it's implemented in V9 I'm stuck with V8.

The possibility to run a brain from a USB is also crucial when doing presentations. If, for any reason, I can't use my main partition on the MacBook Pro, I have a backup on a USB key, so I can run TheBrain from my Bootcamp partition with the same drive letter assigned to it. Modern USB discs, for example the 200Gb SDXC card that I use in a USB3 adapter, are faster than many hard drives. If the whole laptop is not usable, then I want to be able to run the presentation from the USB key on another laptop, so that I'm up and running as quickly as possible.

I understand it is our responsability to make sure the data is there before accessing it, but please could you clarify: is it still possible (but not recommended) to run a brain from a USB drive, or has the feature been removed from V9?

If that's the case, that's one more feature that needs to be added back before I can upgrade from V8.
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CaptainJustice
Manni wrote:

<snip>

The possibility to run a brain from a USB is also crucial when doing presentations. <snip> If the whole laptop is not usable, then I want to be able to run the presentation from the USB key on another laptop, so that I'm up and running as quickly as possible.

I understand it is our responsability to make sure the data is there before accessing it, but please could you clarify: is it still possible (but not recommended) to run a brain from a USB drive, or has the feature been removed from V9?

<snip>

I wonder about using a USB-connected Western Digital SSD?
-- The Cap'n
Surface Pro 4, Windows 10
Dell XPS 15 laptop, Windows 10
Samsung 7Edge
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mcaton
Manni, 

Quote: is it still possible (but not recommended) to run a brain from a USB drive, or has the feature been removed from V9?

I hesitate to say this, but yes, it is still possible to select this type of location to store your Brain data.  But more importantly, it is very possible and very likely that you will LOSE your access to your data.  If the application is ever started without the path of the USB drive being present, or if access to the USB drive is lost while TheBrain is still running, your Brain data will no longer be accessible.  This is why we stress as much as possible that USB storage with v9 is not supported or recommended.

Thank you,
Matt
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Manni
mcaton wrote: Manni, 

mcaton wrote:

I hesitate to say this, but yes, it is still possible to select this type of location to store your Brain data.  But more importantly, it is very possible and very likely that you will LOSE your access to your data.  If the application is ever started without the path of the USB drive being present, or if access to the USB drive is lost while TheBrain is still running, your Brain data will no longer be accessible.  This is why we stress as much as possible that USB storage with v9 is not supported or recommended.

Thank you,
Matt


Hi Matt,

Thanks for this confirmation. This is very good news.

I only access a brain room USB in an emergency. It's a backup and as such, it's read only. If I lose the data on USB, it doesn't matter. The idea is simply that if my main partition fails, I can access my backup partition from bootcamp, with my USB backup assigned with the same drive letter as my main data partition. It works fine with V8. If my presentation laptop is also out of order, I had the Brain on the USB so I can install on another laptop.

I never do any changes to the brain on the USB, with V8 or V9. It's just an emergency backup if Murphy's law strikes during a presentation...

So I only need the return of Presentation Mode to be able to switch to V9. Looking forward to it!
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CaptainJustice
mcaton wrote: Manni, 

mcaton wrote:

I hesitate to say this, but yes, it is still possible to select this type of location to store your Brain data.  But more importantly, it is very possible and very likely that you will LOSE your access to your data.  If the application is ever started without the path of the USB drive being present, or if access to the USB drive is lost while TheBrain is still running, your Brain data will no longer be accessible.  This is why we stress as much as possible that USB storage with v9 is not supported or recommended.

Thank you,
Matt

Matt: what about my question above:  I wonder about using a USB-connected Western Digital SSD?
-- The Cap'n
Surface Pro 4, Windows 10
Dell XPS 15 laptop, Windows 10
Samsung 7Edge
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zenrain
The answer would be the same.
macOS 10.13
TheBrain 9.0.250
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ruudhein
"mcaton wrote: But more importantly, it is very possible and very likely that you will LOSE your access to your data.  If the application is ever started without the path of the USB drive being present, or if access to the USB drive is lost while TheBrain is still running, your Brain data will no longer be accessible.

But that holds true for a folder too, no? If I move the folder or delete it while TB is running. TB runs into a problem.

However, once we put the data back -- it's all up and running again.

The only problem could occur if in the middle of a write operation access would be lost.

I start TB. My brain is inaccessible because the USB drive is not connected -- then it's inaccessible. Nothing happens; a warning might pop up to ask to remove this brain from the list.

I connect the USB drive, start my brain...the data is there so it connects again.

Sounds pretty safe to me.
Using: Evernote | FilterizeEverdo | Dynalist | Liner | TheBrain v9.0.248.0
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mcaton
Ruud,

Sorry, it's not that easy.  You mentioned "once we put the data back - it's up and running again"  This is not a guarantee. There are several steps that would need to be taken in order to try to restore the data. 

Thank you,
Matt
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ruudhein
Maybe we're not talking about the same thing or so.

Let me give another example. If I copy my brain's complete folder to the desktop, I have a 1-on-1 backup of my brain. Right?

If I put that copy back in place -- you're telling me it might not work? That even with its original copy back in place TheBrain has to try to access it and restore it? That would make every type of backup of TB useless.

But if this process would work -- then it should work too when the folder is in c:\My Documents, or D:\flashdrive, or E:\External Disk etc.
Using: Evernote | FilterizeEverdo | Dynalist | Liner | TheBrain v9.0.248.0
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zenrain
If you copy your brains complete folder to the hard drive and then replace it, it will work as TheBrain never loses connection to the HD. 
However, if you run your database from a USB Drive, it is possible for TheBrain to open and not see that drive available. I believe it is this scenario which will cause issues, as it has references to this path in internal locations for security/synchronizing/other stuff (LOL). Breaking this will cause the internal references to break.
macOS 10.13
TheBrain 9.0.250
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ruudhein
Still wouldn't make complete sense. Or if it does, it applies to all situations, not just external drives.

TheBrain folder contains all information for a local instance of a brain. Read/writes to the database *should* be near instantaneous. If not, any power-out or blue screen will mess up your brain and once we reboot we can only *try* to begin to restore the data.

So now let's take the USB drive situation. 

Quote: if you run your database from a USB Drive, it is possible for TheBrain to open and not see that drive available

Then it won't open. It's simply not available.

If it was running already, possibly the last read/write operation wasn't completed but that should always be the case: if in the middle of deleting 20 thoughts your computer goes down during a powerout, those read/write operations won't be completed either.

Quote: I believe it is this scenario which will cause issues, as it has references to this path in internal locations for security/synchronizing/other stuff (LOL).

Love your tech jargon [smile]

That is the part I don't understand... The brain seems to me to be self contained in the folder it stores itself in. If your brain is unavailable, it is unavailable; TB cannot see anything about these references. 

See, what concerns me is that I get the impression database writes are potentially so slow that if anything happens, I could see the same phantom data loss version 7 seemed to suffer from at one point. Could easily be that I misunderstand things though or that mcaton and I are talking about the same thing in different ways -- or talking about different things [smile]
Using: Evernote | FilterizeEverdo | Dynalist | Liner | TheBrain v9.0.248.0
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zenrain
It does store information about the database locations and settings in a different location. In the same parent directory as the log files. This is local, so if it sees this path reference and then tries to access it and it’s not there, there is a problem and a whole bunch of references get messed up.
TheBrain isn’t a file-centric structure, the underlying structure is a database. This makes it much more scaleable, and allows very quick access to very large structures, at the cost of having stricter requirements around location and access.

So basically, I would personally only store my data on an internal HD until such a time that I’m told it’s safe to not do so. [smile]

Edit: I haven’t experienced in my own personal usage that the data write speeds are slow. As far as I can tell, the write speeds are extremely fast, and not related to the above limitation.
macOS 10.13
TheBrain 9.0.250
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zenrain
To clarify, I'm not trying to be argumentative, and I hope my above post isn't interpreted that way. I'm just trying to relate how the software currently behaves and to clarify the pro's/cons of it. 

It's in no way meant in the spirit of "I think being able to use TB with a USB is a bad idea". I totally get that it's a use case and TB 9 as it currently stands (with a very limited web interface) no longer meets that. 
I also get that TB 9 has a larger database size capacity and improved performance for the majority of people.

Also, if I'm misunderstanding something, hopefully someone from TheBrain will correct me. [smile]
macOS 10.13
TheBrain 9.0.250
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ruudhein
Not seeing it as argumentative at all. Good convo.

Quote: It does store information about the database locations and settings in a different location. In the same parent directory as the log files. This is local, so if it sees this path reference and then tries to access it and it’s not there, there is a problem and a whole bunch of references get messed up.

I tried copying a folder from my desktop computer to my laptop. Open TB, open the brain: there it is.

Quote: I haven’t experienced in my own personal usage that the data write speeds are slow. As far as I can tell, the write speeds are extremely fast, and not related to the above limitation.[/QUOTE

My experience too. My laptop uses an SSD so maybe that helps too but TB9 is just fast.

Quote: I would personally only store my data on an internal HD until such a time that I’m told it’s safe to not do so

Same here. I don't have this use case. I don't even know if I need synchronization: I live on my laptop [smile]

My reason is that I backup my brain the way I backup Evernote: I copy the whole darned folder. As far as I can see at the moment, when I open such a copy, it just works. But if this is not the case, if something unseen is damaged, then my backup strategy would be a real downer would something go wrong.

So perhaps the clearest way for me to get clarity is to ask @mcaction : is copying a brain's folder a valid, 100% complete backup (references to external files ignored for now) or is there something else that needs to be copied? 
Using: Evernote | FilterizeEverdo | Dynalist | Liner | TheBrain v9.0.248.0
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