Computer Help forum

General discussion

backing up

by legoluke / June 10, 2010 6:45 AM PDT


When I back up say onto a disk, does it automatically back up all my documents and programmes as well or just my documents and pictures etc. I have downloaded a lot of programmes, i.e. c cleaner and open office and I would want to back them up as well, is that possible as I do not want to spend time downloading all the programmes again from the internet.

also is there a complete way to back up my system without losing my programmes and files, so if my PC crashes I can just load all my programmes back onto my system again, I understand I cannot back up the windows files because I have a recovery disk for that.


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We need some more info here.
by Paul C / June 10, 2010 9:07 AM PDT
In reply to: backing up

What operating system are you using? What backup software are you using? Are you using the default settings for that software?

You see, there are many backup programs out there - I entered "backup software" into Google and got about 183,000,000 hits. Some allow a user to backup an entire system, including installed programs (commonly referred to as a "disk image"). Others merely allow certain selected files to be backed up. Some do both.

IMHO, at the very least, these are the files you should backup: Documents, pictures, videos, music, downloaded program installation files, emails and browser favorites. Your backup software MUST allow you to verify the integrity of a backup after it's created so you can be assured that the backup will work when needed.

HTH, Paul

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HI there
by legoluke / June 10, 2010 9:11 PM PDT

I am using windows vista 32 bit, I am also using the software for windows that comes pre installed to do backups, this disk image that you mentioned, is there a free disk image program that is work looking at. I researched this and a lot of them are paid for programs, but I wondered if there was a free version that does the same thing.

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Yes, there are.
by Paul C / June 10, 2010 9:28 PM PDT
In reply to: HI there

You find your own from this list, although I am familiar with the first two and know they work.
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Not Enough Info but....
by WildClay / June 10, 2010 10:35 AM PDT
In reply to: backing up

I use their Drive Back-Up and Restore (actually a number of their tools) but it is the best I have ever tried and I have been through a number of packages over the years. Once I found Paragon I never looked again, it is low priced, does full image and file back-ups, for Vista and Win7 it will let you migrate even to another PC, meaning, you can restore your old PC on a totally different brand/model and it knows what not to step on, yet puts all your stuff back.

After a restore, your system will be exactly as it started, and say you partitioned your disk in to say C: / D: / E:, you can restore to a formatted or unformatted drive and when the smoke clears it will not only have put all your stuff back just as it was, it will create the same partitions, format, and the put your system back on it.

It is fast, heavy on feature but easy to use, and is very reasonably priced, I can't count the times it has saved my rear. I see in reviews they have great support also but I have never needed it so I can't personally speak to that.

I do automated daily incremental file back-ups (all changes since the last back up), a monthly image back-up, and then rotate them each quarter, also once a quarter I burn a set of DVD's from my back-up USB drive and keep them locked up at work.

Even from an image backup you can extract a single file, I use the file based daily's because it is a lot faster than running a full image back up every day, I have a LOT of disk on my systems.

You can see the products offered here and they have free trials so you can try before you buy.
This is one of their suites, and if you just want backup and restore then you can get that at a lower price. (Suite is 50 bucks, BU/R is $30 bucks, I think there is a 20 buck product also but I have not tried it so don't know much about it.

If you google "paragon drive" you will get a LOT of links to reviews and you can also download any of their manuals from the site before you buy.
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