I have changed security software and my new software does not have a built in back up program. My computer has a 1 TB hard drive and I back up to 2 separate 1.5 TB drives. Would some of you be kind enough to share what you are using for back up software? My internet is on a satellite so I cannot use cloud based back up systems. Slow speed and monthly GB limits before it really slows to a crawl. Thanks all for your valued input.
I tried at least a dozen high end backup suites (at a corporate level) over the last 25 years. I finally threw them all away. The amount of compression and throwing archive bits simply did not add enough value to justify the additional pain/time it took to restore stuff. I moved to a batch file (takes 4 minutes to write) with a uncompressed file copy to external drives.
In a business environment, I had a drive for each night and swapped all the drives each week off site. Other than physically swapping the drives, it was hands free. It was also zero software cost and a breeze to restore any file instantly. (No digging through a database of files, finding the right backup tape, playing with the decompression, etc.)
Now at home I do virtually the same except I do not move drives off site. A batch file does a simple file copy of my personal files each night, I do a complete file copy of the entire file system once every two weeks (or just before I install something). Don
I would try to improve your internet. Cloud solutions will be more reliable than any tape solution, as media management and shelf life become problematic (years)
You also don't need your whole file system. Just the data you create. By separating your docs, pics, videos into separate folder locations you can back them up. Also if you are able to get the data backed up 1x only the changes get uploaded, minimizing future bandwith usage.
As for software, I'd agree with Don, I'd avoid proprietary solutions and go with batch, shell, powershell, or scripts. If you are on windows RoboCopy could solve this easily.
I may be "old fashioned", but, personally, I don't trust Cloud security.
Don: What do you think of an external disk drive and using RAID? Have you ever tried, or used, it? I have been thinking about it.
Note: For those who don't know, RAID makes a copy of your data in real time. The second disk is called a mirrored disk. Make a change in your data and it is automatically backed up on the external drive.
Hi Jerry, I have had RAID bite me in the butt more times than saving my butt. Heck, there was one time I had a RAID controller fail and write trash for a week before it was discovered. It only wrote trash to the recovery drive and we only discovered it when we needed to recover a directory. I distinctly recall thinking, 'why are be bothering with RAID when this can happen?'.
Because my company also did a lot of sector level disk imaging, I played around with that as a backup solution too. But in a corporate environments you are called upon frequently to restore a single file or two. The speed and efficient of being able to navigate to a native copy of the entire file system, find the file, and copy it back was the largest cost in the process. The method I outlined was derived from this 20 years of experience.
I should also note that security was also a prime consideration. This disqualified 'cloud' solutions. While they all talked a great game about hos they stores file in a salt mine with armed guards at the entrance; our security audits revealed a much different story. Time after time we found physical security to be total lacking. In many cases, they did not vet new hires or contractors like maintenance personnel. Gee, do you think that a janitor earning $10 an hour might be bribed to stick a USB drive in a port? Sorry, once you send your files out of your control just assume that they are not secure. The only hope is that your file are so boring and/or worthless that they stay under the radar from people with malicious intent. Don
Thanks Don. I worked on Tandem systems for years and their claim to fame was "Non-Stop" and use of mirrored disks, therefore the question. Still daily and weekly Tape backups were made and stored off-site.
I guess I will look into MS Backup and also look for software that will do a daily Backup of only those files that have changed.
I see that you agree that the Security on Cloud solutions is worse than security on your main machine. To me there are two many "fingers in the pie" I have some stuff on a Cloud, but nothing critical or non-replaceable.
I have a basic home setup. I don't back up my operating system but do back up my email profile every day and browser bookmarks periodically. I have virtually no personal files on the computer, other than what I'm working on right now, which also gets backed up whenever I do some more work.
I'm savvy enough to do a full reinstall of my OS and programs and it takes me about three hours to finish the job. I have the discs for all of this ready to go in the event it needs doing.
For backup, I have an external hard drive and various thumb drives, the latter mirroring what's on the external hard drive.
For seriously important material I burn out to DVD for a third backup.
I do a "daily" backup of what I worked on to a USB stick. I do a backup to a DVD-RW about once a month. I use 2 DVD's, one is the previous month and one is the current month. The next month, last month's current becomes previous and the former previous is re-written as current month. Used the same system on mainframes, except with magnetic tape.
My backup philosophy is Multiple Copies, Multiple Locations. I drag and drop folders to an external hard drive and store that drive at a location different from the computer. My next back up goes to another external hard drive and is stored at a third location. I currently use four different locations.
I write the backup date on a paper label taped to each hard drive.
Because it's a simple process I do it regularly.
RAID is good for a lot of things but it is NOT a backup method.
Hi Paul, I'm sorry, I's not sure what you mean. I haven't written any programs. I wouldn't know where to start!
If you're going down the external hard drive route, buy two. Mine has failed on three occasions in the most bizarre and unexpected circumstances, and you don't want to lose all of your data in one go. It's only 500Gb capacity and is one fifth full, so 100Gb over a few thumb drives is an easy thing to do.
A typical batch file using Windows 'xcopy' command to copy all files on C: drive to a removable drive (D:). You can copy this, name it 'backup.bat' and then run it. You can also use the free, built in Windows scheduler to have it run automatically on a predefined schedule.
:: Back up select files and folders to a location that may be an external drive
:: Set some variables
:: Check to see if the drive is available
if not exist %destinationDrive%\. goto :nodestinationDrive
:: Move to destination drive
:: Check to see if the path is available
if not exist "\%destinationPath%\." goto :nodestinationPath
:: Move to destination path
:: Check to see if the validation file exists
if not exist %validationFile% goto :novalidationFile
:: Backup location is valid
@echo The backup location "%destination%" is valid.
:: Copy files and folders if source is newer than destination
@xcopy xcopy "C:\*.*" "%destination%\Desktop" /d /e /c /i /q /h /r /k /y
@echo Files copied. Please review output for errors.
@echo The destination drive "%destinationDrive%" does not exist.
@echo The destination path "%destinationPath%" does not exist on drive %destinationDrive%.
@echo The validation file does not exist.
:: No files have been copied
::@echo A valid backup location cannot be confirmed.
@echo No files have been copied.