Having just reinstalled Windows 7 I am looking for an effective backup solution.
I have tried the included backup program before and it wouldn't complete properly. A well established problem that seems unsolvable. I gave up in the end. Solving problemns with Microsoft seems a very hit and miss process anyway.
It is my system drive that is the main issue. It is all very well reinstalling Windows but you lose all the program settings. I am a keen photographer and the most awkward to deal with are Lightroom and Photoshop where after a while you forget what you have set up.
I use Folderclone to hold copies of my data on an external USB drive and that has proved invaluable. I have it set up to copy any changes each day. It works automatically according to the schedule and I just don't have to think about it.
If you read the Amazon reviews of ATI, it looks like you either love it or hate it. That is a difficult call to make when you are looking for good recommendations. I have no problem with paying a reasonable amount for an effective backup program but I want to be sure it will be OK once I have paid up.
I agree with you. I use ATI about once a week to make an image of my system partition, and about once a month, a clone - each on different drives. At worst therefore one misses couple of easily reinstalled updates.
I think you will find a majority of Acronis lovers rather than haters here, but it is still better, in ny view , than the W7 back up. Like you I have CS5 etc, and lots of photos backed up in several ways.
Looking at some of my "manufacturers" disks, I find that I actually have Acronis True Drive HD which came with my Kingston SSD when I bought this computer last year. It is a full version so that should allow me to try it out at no cost.
Acronis let me down with 2 restores, it really was touch and go whether I would get my C drive working again . Both times I had to use the rescue boot disk and reboot between every increment of an incremental backup to avoid lockups mid-restore. R-Drive for me now, no problems at all.
I have followed advice here, I make full images of my OS partition with ATI, not increments, and I validate them. I use a similar frequent back up of data to you, (Freefilesynch or Synchtoy). I have a removable caddy mounted SATA HD as a "slave" . I also have another in a similar caddy, to which I make a full clone from time to time. As you say the pain of a full reinstall is too much to do! I also have PS CS5 (about to get 6). I also have a USB HD as a second data back up!