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Do you backup your computer data?

by Lee Koo (ADMIN) CNET staff/forum admin / April 5, 2007 9:54 AM PDT

-- Yes, it's done with automated software utility. (Which one?)
-- Yes, I do it from time to time. (What method?)
-- No. (Is this by choice or do you not know how?)

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Once I did
by jprkenny / April 5, 2007 6:03 PM PDT

I admit it, I don't back up my data at all (because I don't have critical data to back anyway) but I do make up web designs in put them in folders in the "My Documents", so I decided to burn these files onto CD, as well as my pictures and so on. On another note when I publish files to my website, I save the original file on my computer just in case the web server looses my documents.

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backing up
by ddavis78 / April 6, 2007 9:00 AM PDT

I admit I do not know how to do backup on my computer. I know I read lots about how I SHOULD be doing it, but I really don't know HOW. I do know I have a lot on mine that I need to save (many pictures and some home movies) and since my cd burner quit (although it says it is working properly) I can't burn my pictures to a cd, nor can I burn any other info. So, it just waits.

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Data's Just Waiting...
by KennII / April 6, 2007 11:59 AM PDT
In reply to: backing up

Dear friend... you are courting disaster. It doesn't take much to corrupt your OS and force you to wipe your machine. External CD burners are relatively inexpensive and widely available. If you're not tech savvy at extracting your faulty internal drive, an external USB burner may be just what you need. Good luck, and don't wait for "Mr. Murphy" to visit you with greater calamities.

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I think that will help you!!!
by eranruso / April 15, 2007 10:06 AM PDT
In reply to: backing up

I use mighty Key product to backup my computer...
I use it in order to backup my computer but it gives extra feature on the same product too that you might find usefull.

Good Luck!!!

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Backing up computer data
by andymar / April 6, 2007 9:03 AM PDT

I back up manually to an external USB harddrive (320Gb) on a as-needs basis. All critical data are also backed up onto CD/DVD depending on the size of folders/data involved.

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Backup is monthly disk image
by jmd8421r / April 6, 2007 9:09 AM PDT

I back up my entire hard drive once a month using Acronis True Image. The image of my drive is written to an external hard drive which spends all but a couple of days each month in a bank vault. Right now the external drive holds the last three images. As I use more space I guess that will drop to two images someday.

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So you think you're safe backing up to an external drive? No
by leathercladcow / April 7, 2007 5:58 AM PDT

If your data is irreplaceable, you are vulnerable.
I thought kept my backup external drive at home, my computer at work.
Both can't be destroyed together, right?
Well, my dog ran by as I was backing up to a 160 gig titanium USB flashdrive, knocked it on the floor, it gave some screeching sounds, and ground to a halt. I had been doing a fresh backup because my laptop had been acting weird, restarting and restarting at will. my computer guru backed up the hard drive just before it ceased functioning. Hasn't a clue why it went bad, doubts that it is worth sending for repair.
Lesson to me: infallible backup method appears to me to be using net storage. (plus disks)

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Backup or Save?
by beyondtoday / April 6, 2007 9:10 AM PDT

There are two types of people who both believe they have the best answer. half will say back it up dude. and half will say save it to a disc.
I like the save it method myself. but I save to a second harddrive everything I download of the net or upload to my computer goes straight to the "D" drive this way if ever I do get a virus that my system don't stop and I need to put another new OS on everything I have stored on the "D" drive will be safe. why because you only need to format the "C" drive when you install a fresh OS. this method is better than a restore because fragment of the virus you are trying to remove will be saved in the restore that windows resevres when it setsup a restore point. and that can lead to the virus being reactived depending upon the low life that wrote it. So if you are one of these people that don't own a real copy of your windows you should think about buying one.

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Send backup Danno
by barrettjg / April 6, 2007 9:11 AM PDT

All of my music and photos are backed up on a WD stand alone HD,I try to update it about twice a month, depending on how many new pictures and or songs that are added. I do not keep it turned on all the time, only when needed. There doesn't seem to be any way that I know of to back up loaded programs, but what ever else there is to backup is on that external drive also. Lose all of your data just once like I did, and you wouldn't be without one ever.

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Use a network hard drive
by Crash2100 / April 6, 2007 9:11 AM PDT

I use a Buffalo Technology Linkstation, and Norton Ghost/Save & Restore to backup my computers. I have them set to backup the Documents and Settings folder everyday, and they image the system partitions once a month. And since the backups are out on the network, it makes them less susceptible to damage if anything happens to your computer. I have had great success with this, and these backups have saved my butt more than once.

LinkStation Pro

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I backup three ways
by lewisedge / April 6, 2007 9:20 AM PDT

I use Acronis True Image to back up the entire hard drive from my notebook computer. This allows me to restore all files and software to a new hard drive if the old one crashes. I do interim file backups by simply copying all of my "My Documents" folders onto an external drive. Since I keep my mail client "store" in a folder under "My Documents" instead of its default location, I also automatically backup all of my email messages and folders.

My Buffalo NAS drive is the most convenient location for my backups. It'll backup any computer on my home office network quickly and painlessly. Each Sunday morning at 2:00 a.m., the Buffalo drive automatically backs itself up to an external USB connected hard drive. This gives me a backup to the backup.

Aside from the NAS backup, I will do an occasional critical file backup onto another external USB hard drive that usually remains disconnected from my network and is, therefore, not vulnerable to a virus infection or voltage surge. About once every three months, I backup critical files on DVD disks and store them in a remote location.

I can zip all of my company's accounting files and store them onto a single floppy disk. Each time I post new information, complete a payroll or just prior to closing an accounting period, I do a zip/floppy backup and store the disk with in that month's file folder with the financial print-outs. Shopping for rebates, I can usually get a 100 pack of 3 1/2 inch floppies for little or nothing.

Does sound like somebody who's obsessive about backups? You bet! It's never a question of "whether" your hard drive will fail. If you use your computer long enough is usually "when."

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online back up can be used
by pacific-wave / May 21, 2010 3:42 AM PDT
In reply to: I backup three ways
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back up why
by dsmith1hh / April 6, 2007 9:39 AM PDT

I have never backed up my home computer. There is nothing on it to worry over losing. Computers at work are another matter all together.
They are backed up every night. Each drive being stored on 2 seperate
drives, all 47 machines 7 days a week..

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backup,clone and mirror 2 laptops and a desktop
by PiercePCassidy / April 6, 2007 9:40 AM PDT

I learned the hard way, wnet on a 5 week trip with a laptop that crapped out in the first week. Came home to find the housesitter managed to trash the harddisk on the other laptop.

I now have similar sized 2.5" harddrives for both computers (at about $1/GB) with a full clone of the installed drives (using Acronis TrueImage). I carry the spare with me in separate luggage from that with the laptop. If it dies I can just unplug the drive and plug in the spare with all the setting software and files I normally use. I update, syncronize the two before I travel using Dsyncronize by Dimio. I have a cheap portable drive case ($10) but also have used an USB to IDE cable.

I have a separate portable drive that has files only from both laptops and using Dsyncronize in the Add only-Delete nothing mode I can keep a copy of all files and folders safely at home in case the laptop goes missing and to pass files to syncronize between the two.

The desktop has a small C: drive and after I set it up and made folders there containing my utilities I cloned it to the larger drive in that box set as Drive F,(D and E were DVD-ROM and DVD-RW) then changed the boot sequence so it always boots from the larger drive and the smaller is used for backup copies of files only - no operating programs to mimimize risk of infection.

Am toying the idea with pulling the power plug to that drive except when I want access so there is no way it is in the system and vulnerable. If the large drive is infected or crashes I will reboot from the small drive and try to reclone the larger. If that fails I'll plug in a replacement and clone to it and start again. I also have an external 320GB portable (in an Ultra case with its own fan). Heat buildup and shock is a killer with portables do not count on anywhere near the operation hours you get from a drive in a well ventilated desktop case.

This probably sounds like overkill but quality 3.5" hardrives are as low as $70 for 250 GB, an USB to IDE cable with an independent power supply is as little as $20 so no external case is needed if you want to store it separately from the computer. I had a breakin recently where the never managed to get into my office area but in a previous breakin I lost two computers most of the periferals and dozens of original software packages that were installed on those boxes.

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Cant be bothered
by jacko0402 / April 6, 2007 9:41 AM PDT

I have about 600GB of stuff on my computer so i really cant be bothered to back it up, the only things i back up is my music, as last tiem i didnt do this my sister went and lost all my albums on a bus Wink

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No (by choice)
by jayhelman / April 6, 2007 10:04 AM PDT

I choose not to back up my computer. Chances are nothing is going to happpen to your system (or @ least my system that is).

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Yes, using Norton Ghost 10.0
by Harry J. Smith / April 6, 2007 10:22 AM PDT

I automatically backup my computer every night while I am asleep. I use Norton Ghost 10.0 and an external hard drive. The drive is a Western Digital 250 Gigabyte USB 2.0/FireWire 400 device.
I have Norton Ghost set to do a full backup once a month on the 1st and an incremental backup on other days. The full backups are about 60 GB and the incremental backups average less than 1 GB.
My Internal hard drive I am backing up is a 120 GB drive with about 75 GB used. Towards the end of the month I use Norton Ghost to delete some old backups so there is room for new ones.
If you plan to use this scheme, I recommend that the external drive is at least twice as big as the drive you are backing up.

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Data Backups
by pickren / April 6, 2007 10:29 AM PDT

I schedule an automatic backup of my Docs and Settings daily at noon with Microsoft's Backup Utility for Windows and then I perform a manual Automated System Recovery backup with boot disk every 3 days.

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by robie57 / April 6, 2007 11:01 AM PDT

I do not know how to backup

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I wouldn't if it wasn't automated with Windows Home Server
by Considerate_Guy / April 6, 2007 11:01 AM PDT

Face it, we are all lazy and don't regularly back up our data. We think about it, we perhaps made a DVD backup of our valuable photos 18 months ago, but haven't since. It's too much work to do on a regular basis and trying to remember to switch tapes, or move the external USB drive to each PC is a pain.

I've been part of a beta program for Windows Home Server and I see this as an ideal solution. Not only does it back up every PC on your network, it makes duplicate copies of all files stored on the server. I'm really enthused about it and since I've been running the beta, I even had the opportunity to test a full recovery of one of the PCs. The disk failed, but I was able within about 45 minutes to install a new drive, and then reload the contents from the server. That was eye opening!

Microsoft has some details on their website.

From what I know, they are trying to target a release of the product late this year.

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Mozy is the way I go
by mepp / April 6, 2007 11:04 AM PDT

I finally tired of backing up my 49 GB of data, photos, audio, and video to one of two external drives and then parking one of them offsite.

At $5/month for unlimited storage Mozy is a no-brainer. FREE if you're willing to fiddle or don't have that much to backup.

- Savings in not having to purchase two external drives: $200-$400.

- Eliminating the pain-in-the-*** monthly backup routine: 1hour of your leisure time X your hourly rate.

- Knowing your photos and videos are safe from fire or theft: priceless

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Backup Software
by vsawler / April 6, 2007 11:05 AM PDT


I use Windows Home Server!

It's has a very good backup program, that backups all the PC's on my home network daily .... It's does not have the best file selection method, but the other benefits out way this small problem.

The restore CD is awesome. I've had to use it one already, which saved me days of rebuilding a PC. I just booted off the restore CD, selected the correct backup and 1-2 hours later the PC was up and running.

I applied for the beta when it opened and a few days later I was testing! I can honestly say this is a software package or product that will fill the void in the market.

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I back up several times a day
by phna2 / April 6, 2007 11:49 AM PDT

I am an old and I emphasize old hand a backing up critical data files. Back in the 1970s, I wrote a five line Basic file to copy and move all new files and any that changed since the last backup to a zip file and copy that file and place it into a floppy disk. For years I placed it on the older 3.5" floppy disks, but now I'm using a small USB drive. I was able to get over 3MB on an older 3.5" disk after compressing the data with PKZIP

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Back up
by streck733 / April 6, 2007 12:08 PM PDT

Well i only back my stuff up when im gonna update windows like a service pack or im gonna install a new os or do something major. i have a hard drive camcorder so i back my stuff up on it incase i acciently wipe the drive

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Backup Exec / Norton Ghost
by dam718 / April 6, 2007 12:51 PM PDT

Being a Systems Administrator for the past 12 years, there have been a few occaisions in my early days where I quickly learned the value of backing up data.

In a professional environment, this is absolutely vital, and I conduct nightly backups of critical data to AIT Tape using Veritas Backup Exec. I also keep two sets of full system backups for each server, imaged at the time the software configuration was built and active directory schema put in place; one set stored on site, and another in a safe deposit box off site. Not to mention, each server is running 6 drive RAID 5 arrays. But I am in the business of keeping an enterprise level network on its toes 24/7. If anything happens to disrupt service to the network then I am in jeopardy of being fired.

With that being said, I guess it makes me a bit more controlled at home. I adopt a lot of the same practices. In my home PC I use Norton Ghost. I have two SATA drives in a RAID 1 configuration (mirrored) as my C: drive so I have redundancy of my operating system. I also have a full system backup on DVD which I imaged using Norton Ghost at the time I built the system. I have Ghost conduct incremental backups of several folders which I use for storage of important business related, personal files, music, and other such items... It would be a shame to lose your iTunes library, especially since Apple makes you pay (again) to download a song you've already paid for... (That's crap, by the way, if anyone at Apple is reading this!)

I should mention here too that a set of system recovery disks is every bit as vital as having backups of your data. I have found in the past that what seems like a drive failure is simply a corrupt boot sector or master boot record on the hard drive. You can recover the master boot record and your essential system files and system state data (like registry information and active directory information in Win2K+ servers.) You may not have lsot any data at all, but if you don't have recovery disks especially for your system, you will lose everything if you end up with a bad master boot record...

And for those who don't know or don't care about backups... I can understand that, but I tell you... You never know how valuable they are until you've lost everything. Imagine a fire burning everything in your house. It's a little bit like that. I'd rather keep my important files, and make them as fireproof as possible.

Good luck folks!


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I use a combination of Retrospect and Backup MyPC
by rsimanski / April 6, 2007 1:04 PM PDT

For daily backups, I use the Duplicate feature in Dantz Retrospect Express. This copies new and changed files to a partition on my external USB drive that duplicates the partition on my internal hard drive. Because Retrospect simply copies the files and doesn't compress them into a proprietary format, I can retrieve them easily.

This process doesn't delete old files on the USB drive. Every so often, I tell Retrospect to duplicate all files. In this case it deletes files on the target drive that don't exist on the source drive.

For full system backups, I use Backup MyPC to create a backup file on a different partition of the external drive. I know that I should back up to a different medium than the one that I use for Retrospect, but I'm lazy and this method is fast and convenient.

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Linux Server
by purposed / April 6, 2007 1:09 PM PDT

I order my directory structure (and that of my wife's system) so that all important data (except emails) are in a single tree. I back that up about once a week to my Linux server (proFTPD on the Linux manchine and Smart FTP on the Win machines). I use Thunderbird so that my email files are similarly easy to back up.

About a year ago, I helped purchase a large hard drive for my son (lives in a different city) and now I ssh/scopy/rsync those files from my linux server to my id on his linux server about once a month. We both use DynDns to assure the servers can find each other.

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Why not using two HDDs ?
by hifly.liu / April 6, 2007 1:40 PM PDT

Just cost you US$80 a secondary HDD you will never need to backup your data again. Anything you think is necessary to be store forever just put on the secondary HDD. Don't forget to update your Windows by Windows Update and Microsoft Update. This will prevent your computer from virus attack. If you feel the system to be slow down, it's because you install too many application software. Just format C: and reinstall Windows, cost you around 2 hours. Your data is safely store in D:, remember ? Don't try to fix it by any means, it's of no use.
Don't count on any anti-virus software due to it's of no use, too. I have seen the virus affected PC equipped all kind of anti-virus softwares. And I can guarantee to you that if you want to protect your PC by anti-virus software, then your PC will definitely been infected by virus. It's because you don't understand computer, nor the Windows.

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by lover_boy420691 / April 6, 2007 2:25 PM PDT

yes i do backup my computer data with system restore i have windows xp and i just go to start and then click on help and support and then go to system restore and type in the date and time i want to restore it to and it does it for me and then i have all the information that i deleted.i just hope that i can help some people and if there are any other problems that people need help with then i will be happy to help them thank you for takin the time to read this bye

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I do.
by Ed-duh-win / April 6, 2007 2:40 PM PDT

I do, with Synctoy.

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