Try Easeus Todo Backup Free, which you can download from http://www.todo-backup.com/products/home/free-backup-software.htm .
The March 2012 issue of PC World was very high on the FREE program from Easeus and so is CNET. In my experience with a variety of configurations I have to say I'm very impressed. Like Ghost it will back up to a networked drive, and it will create a boot CD for when your PC won't boot. See CNET's review of it at
CNET has a lot of backup program reviews at
Some of these are free (last time I checked there were over 300), some have free trials (over 1000), and some are purchase only (over 200).
External hard drives are best for backup. You can get a 500 GB one for around $60 and a 1 TB one for around $70. You can also buy a 32 GB flash drive for under $15. It's the best insurance you can ever buy!
I hope this helps. Good luck
is there a way to set up my windows vista computer, to automatically back up files to a separate external hard drive? and if so, what kind of files could be set up to auto back up?