New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Backup software

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
What backup software do you guys recommend? Does it matter if the os in on one drive and data/programs on another? Thought about going raid 1 on my son's new build, but I know that's not a true backup. I use time machine on my fruit computers, but nothing on the pc's. Thanks in advance.
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
I7-4770K Asus MAiximus Hero VI EVGA GTX 780 Superclocked ACX Gskills Trident X 16g 2400 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Samsung SSD WD Blue Pioneer NH-D14 Hybrid 
OSMonitorPowerCase
Microsoft 7 Premium 64 Older Samsung Cooler Master V850  Fractal Design Arc R2 Midi 
OtherOther
Swiftech 8 way PWM splitter Self fabricated SSD mount 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
I7-4770K Asus MAiximus Hero VI EVGA GTX 780 Superclocked ACX Gskills Trident X 16g 2400 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Samsung SSD WD Blue Pioneer NH-D14 Hybrid 
OSMonitorPowerCase
Microsoft 7 Premium 64 Older Samsung Cooler Master V850  Fractal Design Arc R2 Midi 
OtherOther
Swiftech 8 way PWM splitter Self fabricated SSD mount 
  hide details  
Reply
post #2 of 6
I have my OS and programs on a separate drive, a 128GB Samsung 840 Pro SSD. I backup that one once a week by imaging with Macrium Reflect Free. (Here is a good tutorial on how to use Macrium Reflect.) An image is a "snapshot" of a drive or partition that is similar to a photo negative. It is used to restore a drive or partition but can't be used as is to access data without using software to mount it. The advantage of an image is it can be used to create an exact copy of a drive or partition that is fully functional, including booting. I make a weekly image of my boot drive once a week and just before making any major changes, such as trying out a new program, and save them to one of the data drives in my computer. Those drives get backed up daily. Imaging works so well for restoring an OS and programs to an earlier date, I disabled System Restore (which was never very reliable for me) and just use imaging only.

While imaging or cloning can be used to backup data, both are time consuming and can take a lot of drive space. Folder/file syncing is far more efficient, taking less time and space and putting less wear and tear on a drive. While there are several folder/file syncing programs available, I like FreeFileSync because it's free, is fairly easy to use, and has a couple of features I like I haven't seen on other folder/file syncing programs (more on that in a moment). A folder/file syncing program works by comparing folder pairs (an entire drive can be considered to be a folder) and does what it has been set to do to make both folders have the same content. For making backups, use the mirror option and make the source and the backup drives the folder pair. FreeFileSync will compare the two paired "folders". If there is a folder or file on the source drive that isn't on the destination drive, FreeFileSync will copy that file from the source drive to the destination drive. If a file on the source drive has been changed since it was first copied to the destination drive, FreeFileSync will delete the file that is on the destination drive and replace it with the changed one copied from the source drive. If a file on the destination drive has been deleted from the source drive, then FreeFileSync will also delete it from the destination drive.

One thing that can complicate using a folder/file syncing program is external drives can change their drive letters. This would break the folder pair. However, FreeFileSync has a provision that I haven't seen on other folder/file syncing programs that allows one to use the name of the destination drive instead of the drive letter to establish the folder pair. That way, FreeFileSync will always be able to find the destination drive not matter what the drive letter may be.

Another feature FreeFileSync has I haven't seen elsewhere is the ability to determine what happens to files it deletes. One can choose to send files to Computer Neverland, never more to be seen. sent to the Recycle Bin, or sent to a folder on another drive called a Versioning folder. I like the Versioning folder because it allows me to be able to retrieve an accidentally deleted file, even if FreeFileSync has already deleted it on the backup.

I used to backup my data drives only once a week by cloning them but it was taking far too long (three hours, no matter how much or little data had been added, changed, or deleted) and didn't have any practical versioning provisions. Since FreeFileSync only deals with added, changed, or deleted files, how long it takes depends mostly on the number and size of the files affected. On most days, it takes me less than a handful of minutes to do a backup.
     
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7-5930K Haswell-e Asus X99-E WS/USB 3.1 Visiontek Radeon 7870 2GB with 6 miniDisplayports G-Skill Ripjaws 64GB (8x8GB) DDR4 2133 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 EVO 4TB SSDs Samsung 950 Pro 512GB m.2 SSD boot drive Noctua NH-D15S Cpu cooler Win 7 Ultimate 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair AX760 Scratch built. Currently under construction at ... Logitech M525 El Cheapo Allsop hard plastic 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
i7-3930k ASUS P9X79 WS MSI R7850 Twin Frozr 2GD5/OC Radeon HD 7850 2GB... Monoprice 1x2 powered HDMI Splitter 
RAMHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Kingston HyperX 32GB (8 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDR... 128GB Samsung 840 Pro SSD 4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD 4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD 4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD LG 12X BD-ROM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM SATA Inter... COOLER MASTER GeminII S524 120mm Long Life Slee... 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 7 Ultimate 3 x Asus VG248QE Vizio VO320E 32" TV Logitech G510s 
PowerCaseMouseAudio
Corsair HX750W Antec Two Hundred v2 Logitech M525 with Unifying Receiving Corsair SP2500 2.1 Speakers 
AudioOtherOtherOther
ASUS Xonar Essence STX Virtual 7.1 Channels 24-... LSI 9211-8i HBA card HooToo® HT-CR001 3.5" PCI-E to USB 3.0 Multi-in... StarTech HSB220SAT25B 2 Drive 2.5in Trayless Ho... 
  hide details  
Reply
     
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7-5930K Haswell-e Asus X99-E WS/USB 3.1 Visiontek Radeon 7870 2GB with 6 miniDisplayports G-Skill Ripjaws 64GB (8x8GB) DDR4 2133 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 EVO 4TB SSDs Samsung 950 Pro 512GB m.2 SSD boot drive Noctua NH-D15S Cpu cooler Win 7 Ultimate 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair AX760 Scratch built. Currently under construction at ... Logitech M525 El Cheapo Allsop hard plastic 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
i7-3930k ASUS P9X79 WS MSI R7850 Twin Frozr 2GD5/OC Radeon HD 7850 2GB... Monoprice 1x2 powered HDMI Splitter 
RAMHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Kingston HyperX 32GB (8 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDR... 128GB Samsung 840 Pro SSD 4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD 4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD 4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD LG 12X BD-ROM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM SATA Inter... COOLER MASTER GeminII S524 120mm Long Life Slee... 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 7 Ultimate 3 x Asus VG248QE Vizio VO320E 32" TV Logitech G510s 
PowerCaseMouseAudio
Corsair HX750W Antec Two Hundred v2 Logitech M525 with Unifying Receiving Corsair SP2500 2.1 Speakers 
AudioOtherOtherOther
ASUS Xonar Essence STX Virtual 7.1 Channels 24-... LSI 9211-8i HBA card HooToo® HT-CR001 3.5" PCI-E to USB 3.0 Multi-in... StarTech HSB220SAT25B 2 Drive 2.5in Trayless Ho... 
  hide details  
Reply
post #3 of 6
Windows 8 has "File History" which might be a bit like Time Machine? It backs up everything that you tied to a Library (you know those default ones called "Documents", "Pictures", "Music", "Videos"). For folders that I want to be processed and that aren't in any of the libraries I actually use, I created a special Library and added those folders to it.

In the default settings, File History checks once every hour for changes and backs up the files. You're able to browse old versions of files, though I feel the browser for that is a bit crappy to use. It saved my butt a bunch of times, I could revert stupid mistakes I made and it saved me from losing hours of work.

I bet one could use a version control system instead of File History for things like the documents folder. That might work better and there's open source version control systems.

For the actual backups I do, I use Acronis True Image. It seems slightly buggy but still works well. I have a 250 GB SSD and a full backup takes twenty to thirty minutes. An incremental backup is done in two minutes (though that depends on how much is changed). The incremental backup is not available in the free version of the program.

There's nothing special to think about with the backups. After setting up a schedule, it will just do its thing. With an SSD as source and HDD as target, you can't feel anything about it running in the background. The HDD is much slower than the SSD, so the SSD is naturally not taxed at all by the backup running, there's always enough resources left over to supply the normal use of the PC. This means you can do a lot of backups if you want, even daily.

To restore the PC, you can create a bootable USB stick or burn an optical disc. The backup programs usually come with a disc image for that, so you don't need a working Windows installation to restore the backups.
Edited by deepor - 3/29/14 at 9:09am
post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thanks y'all.

Lady, do you use the image for just the os? I like the idea of freefilesync reading the drive name and not the letter. I'm going to look into those more.

Deepor, I tried acronis years ago, and maybe I had something set wrong, but it eventually took over the whole hard drive. I got frustrated with it and uninstalled. I would like a bootable usb or disc though. I don't know a lot about time machine except that it does a complete copy of the whole system and then anything you do from there on out. I think you can change what it does, I just left it on default. I like how you browse through date and time and when you find what you want, just select that item and bring it back unlike system restore where you lose everything since the restore point. I remembered an email from a year and half ago, went to time machine backups, searched the name and there it was.

I think I am going to replace the regular hard drive on my son's new build with a bigger one and erase the current one for an external back up. What do you all recommend as the easiest way to move the files over from the current drive before I erase? I think it is just photos and games for the most part.
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
I7-4770K Asus MAiximus Hero VI EVGA GTX 780 Superclocked ACX Gskills Trident X 16g 2400 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Samsung SSD WD Blue Pioneer NH-D14 Hybrid 
OSMonitorPowerCase
Microsoft 7 Premium 64 Older Samsung Cooler Master V850  Fractal Design Arc R2 Midi 
OtherOther
Swiftech 8 way PWM splitter Self fabricated SSD mount 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
I7-4770K Asus MAiximus Hero VI EVGA GTX 780 Superclocked ACX Gskills Trident X 16g 2400 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Samsung SSD WD Blue Pioneer NH-D14 Hybrid 
OSMonitorPowerCase
Microsoft 7 Premium 64 Older Samsung Cooler Master V850  Fractal Design Arc R2 Midi 
OtherOther
Swiftech 8 way PWM splitter Self fabricated SSD mount 
  hide details  
Reply
post #5 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by elwood13 View Post

Thanks y'all.

Lady, do you use the image for just the os?...

Yes.
     
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7-5930K Haswell-e Asus X99-E WS/USB 3.1 Visiontek Radeon 7870 2GB with 6 miniDisplayports G-Skill Ripjaws 64GB (8x8GB) DDR4 2133 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 EVO 4TB SSDs Samsung 950 Pro 512GB m.2 SSD boot drive Noctua NH-D15S Cpu cooler Win 7 Ultimate 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair AX760 Scratch built. Currently under construction at ... Logitech M525 El Cheapo Allsop hard plastic 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
i7-3930k ASUS P9X79 WS MSI R7850 Twin Frozr 2GD5/OC Radeon HD 7850 2GB... Monoprice 1x2 powered HDMI Splitter 
RAMHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Kingston HyperX 32GB (8 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDR... 128GB Samsung 840 Pro SSD 4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD 4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD 4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD LG 12X BD-ROM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM SATA Inter... COOLER MASTER GeminII S524 120mm Long Life Slee... 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 7 Ultimate 3 x Asus VG248QE Vizio VO320E 32" TV Logitech G510s 
PowerCaseMouseAudio
Corsair HX750W Antec Two Hundred v2 Logitech M525 with Unifying Receiving Corsair SP2500 2.1 Speakers 
AudioOtherOtherOther
ASUS Xonar Essence STX Virtual 7.1 Channels 24-... LSI 9211-8i HBA card HooToo® HT-CR001 3.5" PCI-E to USB 3.0 Multi-in... StarTech HSB220SAT25B 2 Drive 2.5in Trayless Ho... 
  hide details  
Reply
     
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7-5930K Haswell-e Asus X99-E WS/USB 3.1 Visiontek Radeon 7870 2GB with 6 miniDisplayports G-Skill Ripjaws 64GB (8x8GB) DDR4 2133 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 EVO 4TB SSDs Samsung 950 Pro 512GB m.2 SSD boot drive Noctua NH-D15S Cpu cooler Win 7 Ultimate 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair AX760 Scratch built. Currently under construction at ... Logitech M525 El Cheapo Allsop hard plastic 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
i7-3930k ASUS P9X79 WS MSI R7850 Twin Frozr 2GD5/OC Radeon HD 7850 2GB... Monoprice 1x2 powered HDMI Splitter 
RAMHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Kingston HyperX 32GB (8 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDR... 128GB Samsung 840 Pro SSD 4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD 4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD 4TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD LG 12X BD-ROM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM SATA Inter... COOLER MASTER GeminII S524 120mm Long Life Slee... 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 7 Ultimate 3 x Asus VG248QE Vizio VO320E 32" TV Logitech G510s 
PowerCaseMouseAudio
Corsair HX750W Antec Two Hundred v2 Logitech M525 with Unifying Receiving Corsair SP2500 2.1 Speakers 
AudioOtherOtherOther
ASUS Xonar Essence STX Virtual 7.1 Channels 24-... LSI 9211-8i HBA card HooToo® HT-CR001 3.5" PCI-E to USB 3.0 Multi-in... StarTech HSB220SAT25B 2 Drive 2.5in Trayless Ho... 
  hide details  
Reply
post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thank you.
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
I7-4770K Asus MAiximus Hero VI EVGA GTX 780 Superclocked ACX Gskills Trident X 16g 2400 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Samsung SSD WD Blue Pioneer NH-D14 Hybrid 
OSMonitorPowerCase
Microsoft 7 Premium 64 Older Samsung Cooler Master V850  Fractal Design Arc R2 Midi 
OtherOther
Swiftech 8 way PWM splitter Self fabricated SSD mount 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
I7-4770K Asus MAiximus Hero VI EVGA GTX 780 Superclocked ACX Gskills Trident X 16g 2400 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Samsung SSD WD Blue Pioneer NH-D14 Hybrid 
OSMonitorPowerCase
Microsoft 7 Premium 64 Older Samsung Cooler Master V850  Fractal Design Arc R2 Midi 
OtherOther
Swiftech 8 way PWM splitter Self fabricated SSD mount 
  hide details  
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Other Software