Spyware, Viruses, & Security forum

Question

Win 7 Backup & Restore Centre vs. 3rd party backup software?

by ATP-1 / June 11, 2012 3:46 PM PDT

I am resuming my search for some reliable, effective & suitable windows 7 on-premise backup software.

Along the way, I have encountered mention of Windows 7 built-in Backup & Restore Centre. I have had a quick look at it.

Are there any here familiar with use of this Windows Backup & Restore Centre, & able to comment on its advantages & disadvantages, & how it compares to 3rd party backup software?

Thanks.

Answer This Ask For Clarification
Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: Win 7 Backup & Restore Centre vs. 3rd party backup software?
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: Win 7 Backup & Restore Centre vs. 3rd party backup software?
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.

All Answers

Collapse -
Answer
After years of backup.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / June 12, 2012 5:24 AM PDT

I learned to not use any Microsoft backup software. Microsoft has failed to unify their systems. That is, backup on XP might or might not restore on Vista or 7. And most any combination of versions. Not to mention other failures. Since the backup is in some proprietary format you end up with bum backups.

Why not backup with simple tools like Goodsync, Syncback, Roadkil's Unstoppable Copier or even Windows Explorer?

You'll end up with files that are just like they were before without any anxiety of not being able to restore.
Bob

Collapse -
Answer
Best app for backup
by Silvertop / June 15, 2012 10:57 AM PDT

The best method for backing up a system is to use an application that produces an image of all your drives. Free ones like Macrium Reflect or Easeus do a good job and are reliable. The regular data can be saved using explorer or an app that will synchronize your folders with your files and a backup of those files. I find FreeFileSync to be the best one and it is free. All your data files can be found in C:\users\*your name*. That is the default location of all your docs, music, pictures and videos. Of course it is assumed you have an external backup device such as a external hard drive. This method is tried and tested over the years and works. I have lost data using Microsoft's backup so I do not recommend you use that method.

Collapse -
Answer
RE: Win 7 Backup & Restore Centre vs. 3rd party backup softw
by dj_erik / June 15, 2012 11:14 AM PDT

It really depends on what you are doing...

If you have a complex setup such as Apple BootCamp or Dual boot with Linux, I would recommend to use third party software such as Acronis, Paragon, Backup Exec, etc... From experience Windows built in backup software doesn't work well with multiple partitions or various partition formats.

If you have a single drive and a possible data drive, Windows built in backup can work flawlessly and has the ability to backup the whole drive to a VHD, so it's even recoverable on a virtual computer. I've tested this out well on Windows workstations on both recovery of the computer to the same computer clean and recovery to a Hyper-V environment.

As far as third party improvements, good third party software can usually backup complete images as well as incremental backups and restore to different hardware or various VM environments without any issues. Restoration can be simply a file or the complete computer and usually at specific time. Looking at my Windows backup, it stores a month worth of daily backups of system images incremental. The added cost usually comes with added support as well, and that can definitely be a benefit when your down.

Hope this details some of the finer points of Windows backup vs third party software. In all honesty, Windows has come along way since the XP days for backup and restore and although they are still not the best, the free price tag definitely makes it something to look at.

Popular Forums
icon
Computer Help 49,613 discussions
icon
Computer Newbies 10,349 discussions
icon
Laptops 19,436 discussions
icon
Security 30,426 discussions
icon
TVs & Home Theaters 20,308 discussions
icon
Windows 10 360 discussions
icon
Phones 15,802 discussions
icon
Windows 7 7,351 discussions
icon
Networking & Wireless 14,641 discussions

Tech Tip

Stuck without Internet and want to watch movies?

CNET shows you how to download movies and TV shows onto your device using Amazon Prime so you'll always be entertained.