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unable to create intermediate backup

  • Tranas

    Tranas - 2011-02-12

    WinXP Pro SP-3. with v3.24.1

    Power users get a "unable to create intermediate backup" message when closing
    Password Safe. Administrative users on the same box do not have the issue.

    I see this is an old issue - goes back to early 2010. - the response then was

    "Sounds like a file or directory access permission issue. Could you check and
    let me know in what directory PasswordSafe's trying to save the database in?
    File->Save As.. should show you the directory. As a workaround, you might want
    to change to a directory in which you have write access, such as My

    Apparently, "Write" permission is not sufficient to create an intermediate
    backup - "Modify" is required. However, Password Safe modifies Windows
    permissions after they have been set by an administrator.

    If you create a new folder - such as "PWSAFE" , place .psafe3 files within
    this folder and grant Power Users Modify permission on the individual .psafe3
    files, Password Safe will change permissions on these .psafe3 files regardless
    of what has been set.

    Power Users by default have write permission - however to create a ibak file,
    modify permission is needed. If permissions for Power users are changed to
    allow "Modify", a Power User can make one backup, and then Password Safe
    strips the permissions from the individual files and apparently deletes the
    ibak file for the .psafe3 files Power Users attempt to save.

    The workaround is apparently modifying the folder permissions to allow
    "Modify" for Power Users - then Password Safe appears to be unable to strip
    the inherited permission from the .psafe3 files.

    Evidently, if one wants finer control of .psafe3 file access, it has to be
    done via folders.

    If this is not a bug - would appreciate an explanation as to why it is
    necessary to jump through these hoops.


  • DrK

    DrK - 2011-02-12

    Ahhh.... thank you for this as I think I can explain this.

    When PasswordSafe creates an Intermediate Backup, it really just renames the
    current database to the new name and extension ibak and then writes a new copy
    of the data in memory to disk with the original database name and psafe3
    extension. Note: we always close the database when we have finished reading it
    at open time - again to protect the database as much as possible,

    We believe that this is the best way to ensure that the backup is as the
    database was when it was last saved.


    PS. I will point your item in the Open Discussion to this reply.

  • Don Bishop

    Don Bishop - 2015-06-24

    Thanks TIA and Dr. K
    I've been struggling with this for weeks. Setting folder permissions works.

  • Don Bishop

    Don Bishop - 2015-07-31

    This issue is still unresolved. I created a new folder, set full control, and copied my files into it. I close and open PWSafe, open the new file, change an entry, and get Unable to create intemediate backup.
    This problem began when I reinstalled Windows on a new SSD. Other apps work OK.

  • Don Bishop

    Don Bishop - 2015-08-01

    Problem Solved (Duh) Temporary backups were saved to the backup drive. For security against malware that encripts your drives, I leave the backup drive powered down to protect the systtem images. I created a new folder for interim backups on the data drive. Problem gone!


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