Disk Images & Backups

  johndrew 15:09 24 Apr 2006

I have been advised that a good way of protecting my PC from loss of data is a disk image of my C: & D: drives.

Unfortunately, although I believe that a disk image is a `total` picture of a hard drive containing every thing necessary to produce a new hard drive by simply copying the data to a new drive, I have now idea how to achieve this or whether it is the right thing to do.

Obviously I would need to update the backup with MS updates, documents, photos, etc. but I am also unsure whether this can be done simply or if I would need to replace the whole disk image on a regular basis.

Currently I rely on System Restore and Windows Backup but recognise these are not going to protect me in the event of a hard drive failure nor is the Backup feature an easy way to protect my data as it requires a full regular run if I am to ensure the MS updates are saved. The Backup data is stored on a large external drive.

Is there a prefered way of securing all the data on a drive, updating it regularly and providing secure way of recoving it to a new hard drive if the need arises.

  Diemmess 16:36 24 Apr 2006

Fortunately backing up (only) your data is a snip with EZbackitup a freebie click here

Like making a CD, you choose what you want to backup and where to save it.
This can take a few minutes but your customising can be altered any time.

Then it may take a minute or so to run for the first time, but after that running will take only a second or even less.

You can configure so that it will only overwrite changes to the data.

No excuse left not to backup at least once /day

  johndrew 14:58 25 Apr 2006

Thanks people.

From what you say, it looks as if my knowledge was `generally` correct. I like the method that you use pj123, but which would be the simplest software to use for the clone and could I store (if thats the right word) it on an external hard drive?

I have Nero and have downloaded EZbackitup to try and find which of these is the better/easier for me.

Always open to suggestions and more information. Thanks again.

  johndrew 16:23 25 Apr 2006

Thanks for the info. but I see a major problem from my point of view. xxcopy is run from the CLI; I have no expertise or knowledge on that particular piece of black magic. Being only a novice I can manage only very small steps in this vertical learning curve!

I have also looked at xxclone and although it appears to be used from a GUI it also says it has problems as it isn`t yet finished.

Any better ideas for someone wearing the large `L` plate?

  iscanut 16:27 25 Apr 2006

Acronis True Image will be fine for you. Easy to use.

  Arnie 17:48 26 Apr 2006

I employ a second hard drive. I also use Acronis True Image.

My second drive is physically isolated by a round key switch. This breaks the 12v line to the drive and saves purchasing a caddy. Also there is more air circulating the drive when it is accessed.

The switch is available from Maplin Electronics:

click here

  Arnie 19:14 01 May 2006

forgot to mention the boot CD that is advisable to make at the onset.

I have made one and run through the procedure and it works fine.

I also use PowerQuest Drive Image now and again, (belt and braces) in DOS mode with a bootable floppy.

  johndrew 10:35 04 May 2006

Thanks for your help everyone.

Looks as if my best bet is Acronis and at the price ade.h kindly found for me it would be no huge loss if I fail to get on with it!!

If I do drop down a black hole I`ll start another thread.

Thanks again.

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