What type of backup?

  Housten 16:55 15 Apr 2012

Good Afternoon, Everyone,

I know I am being thick and stupid, but I am having a problem with what sort of backup I should be doing! What I hope is that someone will read what I wish to do and then tell me – exactly – what I need to do in order that I have the sort of backups that I want.

I think my needs are not great as all I want to do is a backup at the start of every month and then a differential one thereafter – whether daily, twice-weekly or just weekly - for the rest of that month and than start again. What I have found is EaseUS to be very good, I thought it did incremental/differential backup but the version that I had did not. I looked on their website and found their forum and found a lot of very unhappy people as Version 3.5 did these backups, but as I had the new improved 4.0.5 version this did not. On the forum a site was listed and from that I downloaded 3.5. I find it very good but – and this is where I am having a problem – I am confused as to what I should be doing. I know, I know read the manual, but I have and all it has done is confuse me even more!

I have seen a comment lately that the ‘best’ backup is a ‘system image’ backup, which should be done quite quickly and if it has to be used to recover a crashed disk it is also very fast to re-install. That is all very well and good but, as far as I can see, EaseUS doesn’t do this so another question is raised in my mind, should I now have to go through another round of trials of backup programmes to find one which will do this or not? I spent quite a long time to find this programme and I would rather not have to do that all over again, but if that gives the ‘best’ backup I suppose that that is something I should, at least, consider. Or perhaps EaseUS does do this ‘system image’ and me being thick and stupid just doesn’t recognise because different phraseology is being used.

So with all my confusion does anyone know what sort of backup I should be making? I am not in favour of having any sort of compression so that if there is a problem I can find the file(s) that I am having a problem with and just either copy them or recover them – that is something else I don’t really know which is better!! Also is it worth having the integrity of the backup checked? Some programmes seem to infer that it is not necessary, whilst state that it is worth doing – just adds to my confusion!! If there is someone who could inform what or which I should be doing I would be very, very grateful.

Many, many thanks in advance for any and all comments.

  Nontek 17:34 15 Apr 2012

Personally I would forget the Freebies if you want total security.

Acronis True Image is not expensive and IMHO is easily the best, it will do everything you want and more!

  johndrew 17:48 15 Apr 2012

I agree with the above suggestion to use ATI. I have two full backups and simply overwrite the older once a month.

Additionally for any current files that change greatly you can backup the file only either on a, say, daily basis.

Have a look at ATI and its features here and its not expensive, look here.

  john bunyan 18:09 15 Apr 2012

I would partition my HD into - say - 100 gig for programmes and balance for data. For the programmes I fully agree with ATI. For data either Freefileshynch or Synchtoy are quicker, IMHO. Have a read here: Older thread

  [DELETED] 18:21 15 Apr 2012

I stopped imaging some years ago I also have system restore turned off, I use a small boot/program's and everything else goes on a secondary HDD with a copy on a NAS drive. I use Goodsync which will immediately backup any altered file to the NAS. I also use Dropbox to back up my personal documents,again automatically.

I gave up on Acronis as I felt it was becoming to bloated.But it certainly will do what you want as will this EaseUS ToDo.

  Snrub 09:56 16 Apr 2012

Chronus quote 'I use a small boot/program's'

Can you explain this in a bit more detail please?

  [DELETED] 10:10 16 Apr 2012


My apologies I was typing on my ipad at the time and as PCdvisor does not have an edit button I could not add the words SSD harddrive.

  Snrub 10:35 16 Apr 2012

'I use a small boot/program's SSD harddrive'**

Can you explain this in a bit more detail please? Still not with it!

  [DELETED] 11:16 16 Apr 2012

I have a Crucial 128 GB SSD One of these, on which I have installed my operating system (Win 7 64BIT)and programs, the usual day to day stuff, Office Picassa etc etc. Every thing else including my Steam games folder (305GB) is on my secondary drive (1TB). I have also moved all the MY folders to the secondary drive which are then backed up to my NAS dive also 1TB.

I used to have a 60GB SSD which was more than enough for the OS and programs but got a great deal on the 128GB so moved the 60GB to my HTPC.

  Snrub 12:20 16 Apr 2012


Thanks understand now, interesting alternative to imaging.

  Housten 14:16 16 Apr 2012

Good Afternoon to all who replied,

I hope no one will think I am being rude ( and I am referring to you when Nontek and johndrew, in particular )when I say that I would not touch ATI with your bargepole, never mind mine. ( For a fuller description of what this is about, if you check an earlier post of mine you will find out why! ). I must say that your suggestion, john bunyan, is a very good idea and I will have a look at your further suggestions. Chronus what is NAS? And I am using EaseUS though NOT the latest version but have gone back to version 3.5, as it has incremental and differential backups as well.

My only query, gentlemen, is that no-one has commented on my point about 'system imaging', how to do it and is it worth doing. Nevertheless many thanks to every one who replied.

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

Elsewhere on IDG sites

Microsoft Surface Book 2 15in review

Illustrator Amy Grimes on how setting up her own eco-brand led to success with clients too

MacBook Pro keyboard issues and other problems

Test : l’enceinte connectée HomePod d’Apple