Backup Advice Needed

  Toniojoe 16:28 17 Nov 2005

I've been using "copy and paste," via Windows Explorer, to back-up all my important files, including image files, to an external hard drive for a couple of years now. What I do is highlight and copy everything in My Documents and simply paste into a folder in my external HD. But I've started to wonder if I'm doing the right thing. My way seems to work just fine, but I'm thinking that I may be "missing something" seeing as there are programs available which will do back-ups. Has anyone got any advice please as I'd hate to find I've been wasting my time!



  Skills 17:24 17 Nov 2005

I quite often just drag and drop my important files onto a blank cd to back them up this has worked for me for quite some time. It will be the same with an external hard drive if you ever need them you can just open the files up on your hard drive and copy them back.

The advantage of using a dedicated backup program is that you can set it to do incremental backups at set times.

Also when you say images files are you talking about an image created by a program like ghost or acronis true image? Thats the way most people backup now because it creates a complete image of your hard drive and you can restore from it in about 10mins and be back to the day you made the image. Image programs such as that support incremental backups as well.

  Toniojoe 17:42 17 Nov 2005

Sorry to confuse - by image files I mainly meant pictures and video clips that I've either taken myself or which friends have sent to me. I have seven years' worth of these on my PC, and of course backed-up on an external HD, so I wouldn't want to loose them. In fact I'm thinking I should get a second external HD - just in case! I haven't heard about "ghost or acronis true image," but they sound like a good thing to have so I'll take a look at them! Many thanks for your help


  stalion 20:01 17 Nov 2005
  Toniojoe 00:22 18 Nov 2005

Thanks for this Stalion. It seems to make a lot of sense to get this program. Very grateful you took the time to post the link


  Toniojoe 08:10 18 Nov 2005

I just had a thought - instead of getting a second external HD just to make doubly-sure I don't loose everything if the worst happens, could I fit another internal one and just use it for backups? It would be neater, and there's room in my tower. Is this feasible, or is there some reason why this would be a bad idea?



  Diodorus Siculus 08:42 18 Nov 2005

It is a good idea and what many peoplewho back up do.

I've got a 40GB slave disk that is used simply as a backup - occasionally I back it up to DVD.

There is a slight risk in that if the PC is subjected to a power surge and the main disk goes, so too does the backup. But that is pretty unlikely, I think.

I use ezbackitup to automate the process - it runs at midnight on my machine and copies my mail, my documents and a few other settings to the slave drive. click here

Also, click here for a very good guide to backing up.

  stalion 18:48 18 Nov 2005

your welcome

  Toniojoe 23:30 18 Nov 2005

Thanks for your input Diodorus Siculus - especially for pointing-out the guide to backing-up. I decided that getting a second external HD is the safer option for me, and I've now placed my order. When it arrives I will then be able to back-up to two seperate external HDs. I'm still considering whether or not I need to get acronis true image. It sounds great and I think I probably will go that route in the end. Thanks again for all your great advice which is really appreciated


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