How to Back up data

  hiwatt 16:13 24 Apr 2007

what do I do to back up my data?I have precious music files and a couple of jpegs that I would hate to loose.My computer crashed a couple of months ago but someone managed to do a repair install and told me to back up my data.Could someone tell me the best way to do this please?Thanks.

  johndrew 16:33 24 Apr 2007

The choice will always be yours subject to cost.

Depending upon file size you could use CDs, DVDs, memory sticks, a second drive in your PC (provided it`s not a laptop), an external drive or even online storage.

Personally I prefer to keep my data at home, so I use CD/DVDs and an external drive. CDs & DVDs are relatively cheap so you could make several copies if you wanted and lock one in a fireproof and/or theft resistant area (like a safe).

An external drive is good because you can backup the whole of your PC data (including the OS) so in the event of catastrophic failure you can reload and be up and running again quickly.

There are many threads on backing up on this site which you may like to browse. You will also need some backup software if you intend to make regular backups of your drive(s); I (like many others here) use Acronis True Image which comes highly recommended.

  mole44 16:42 24 Apr 2007

i use an external drive, and a Norton Ghost. a few clicks and a small wait (dependant on how much your saving)= your data is safe,i back up one a week and keep three copies i.e. A,B,C then B becomes A,C becomes B.

  keef66 16:45 24 Apr 2007

I'd recommend an external (usb 2 or firewire) hard drive and Acronis True Image backup software.

If you can't afford to buy True Image, the earlier versions often appear as freebies on magazine cover disks.
Alternatively Windows XP has a backup function built in. It's installed by default in XP Pro, but you'll have to install it from your XP Home disk.

  hiwatt 16:45 24 Apr 2007

Thanks folks.I'll get a new hard drive and post for help on how to save it,I'm quite new to this kind of thing.Cheers.

  Miros 17:18 24 Apr 2007

You mean an External Hard Drive I presume?

  hiwatt 17:23 24 Apr 2007

Miros,the guy that's going to fit it for me said an internal hardrive would be "easier" because if my present hardrive failed the new one would kick in straight away?I'm not really sure.I just want to make sure my music is safe and wondered what the best way to do it was?

  wee eddie 17:30 24 Apr 2007

Your buying an External Hard Drive from Amazon, Dabs or PC World, and using the Back-up Program supplied with it, will make him no money.

However it will rely on you remembering to do you back-ups.

What he has suggested should work if he sets it up right and it could become a nice little earner for him.

  Batch 17:41 24 Apr 2007

For someone such as yourself, I would recommend an External USB Hard Drive. That way if your system fails (for whatever reason) you can readily plug the external drive into another computer and access your data. An internal drive is tied to the system until you (or, by the sound of it, someone else in your case) get the drive out and fitted into another computer.

An external hard drive may well come with some backup software. Alternatively you can just drag the folders containing your data onto the new drive and they should get copied. Obviously you need to know exactly where your data is located - hopefully under My Documents. You may well wish to back-up your emails, address book and favourites - these are not so obviously located - post back if you want to back these up.

Alternatively, if the volume is not too great, as others have suggested, use CDs or DVDs (not re-writeables, as these are reputed to be less reliable).

  hiwatt 17:50 24 Apr 2007

Thanks a million for the advice folks.

  ChristySD 02:12 29 Nov 2007

One option is keep everything online- so you can access your files, email, calendars, etc. from any computer or internet device. has an account that gives you 15 gigs of online file storage, shared calendaring, print share and mobile email access for $12.95 a month. With web, mobile and desktop access.

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