Basic backup questions?

  jake2 18:54 29 Dec 2005

What exactly should I back up? Everything in my documents for example?
Whats the best format to save the data? Second hard drive? cd roms?
Whats the best way to do this?
I am planning to add another hard drive in the next month or two, would it be ok to use the original 60gb drive as the back up and have all the same data on the new 160gb drive and also use this as the main drive?
What do you recommend?

  Belatucadrus 22:24 29 Dec 2005

I backup documents & Application files, I do this using a scheduled automatic backup to a seperate disk partition.
Best freebie backup tool I know of at the moment is WinBackup click here though Lexun click here and Polderbackup click here are OK alternatives.

  DieSse 00:51 30 Dec 2005

With a new 160 as the main drive, you could use the existing 60 as the storage for a *compressed image* backup. The 60 will hold all the information from the 160 in compressed form.

A program such as Acronis True Image will do this simply for you, from within Windows.

I use a 40GB to back up my (not full) 120 drive, which has three partitions - one 60GB WindowsXP, one 30GB data and one 30GB Xandros Linux. Acronis does the whole lot in one go onto the removable 40GB unit. After a complete backup, you can make frequent updates - then refresh the main backup again every month (say).

If my 120 went down, I can recover it to the state of the last backup in a single restore operation.

  DieSse 00:55 30 Dec 2005

I should also explain that the advantage of making the old drive removeable (I use an internal tray - you can also use an external USB box if you have USB2 (USB1 would be too slow)). That is - you can take it off the computer, so avoiding even power problems which could in extremis damage many or all parts of the system.

  jake2 17:42 20 May 2006

Thanks I'll remember that for future reference.

  Enoch 18:35 20 May 2006

I now use Acronis True Image and back-up my complete hard drive to an external hard drive. I use to only back-up my personal folders to a CD-RW, using the Grandfather,Father,Son principle (thereby having three back-ups made at different times). However, a few weeks ago I did a test on one set of my back-up CD's and found it corrupted.

Having, many moons ago, lost all my data I have become paranoid about back-up so I needed to be confident that I was safe, so I spent the money (on Acronis and an external hard drive) and now I sleep at night.

"Jake2"---please back up properly, its worth it!!!!

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