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Windows 7: Another back up strategy question

17 Aug 2011   #11
preiius

Windows 7 Professional 64bit
 
 

Can we trust Easeus products? They are fairly new, compared to Acronis and Macrium. Backup/restore has to work every time, with no exception.


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17 Aug 2011   #12
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

EaseUs has been around for awhile (since 2004). I've used their 1.1 product for a few years now without any real issue. They have free products, workstation products and server products as well. I'd trust them as much as I would Macrium or Acronis (and I own Acronis True Image 2010)
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18 Aug 2011   #13
Riggers

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Everyone seems to be hung up on system images and, whilst its clearly important to have one, I find the obsession with it a bit geeky to be honest. I'll create an image, rename it (I think I can cope with using explorer to rename a folder lol) and keep it somewhere safe.

I'm getting very little information on the aspect that I'm most concerned about and that's finding a quick, simple and effective way of doing an incremental backup for a large amount of data. I'll try Windows 7 back up and if that proves to be too slow I'll check out some of the other products mentioned and report back.
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18 Aug 2011   #14
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Riggers View Post
Everyone seems to be hung up on system images and, whilst its clearly important to have one, I find the obsession with it a bit geeky to be honest. I'll create an image, rename it (I think I can cope with using explorer to rename a folder lol) and keep it somewhere safe.

I'm getting very little information on the aspect that I'm most concerned about and that's finding a quick, simple and effective way of doing an incremental backup for a large amount of data. I'll try Windows 7 back up and if that proves to be too slow I'll check out some of the other products mentioned and report back.
Hmm. I guess we consider imaging somewhat important. It becomes more important when it fails you. It is only the geeky advice that comes free.

Do you realize there are two distinctly different backup mechanisms within Windows 7? Both handle the "incremental approach" differently - which one are you talking about?
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18 Aug 2011   #15
preiius

Windows 7 Professional 64bit
 
 

Yeah, free advice, why listen??

I suspect why OP's initial backup is taking so long is Backup & Restore (B&R) is compressing over 1T of data, and that over slow usb interface. Here are some options:

1. Use B&R to backup just the working files in c:. If you want it as quick as possible, don't save the system image. Use sync program like synctoy to sync contents of m: and v: to backup hd.

2. Use alternative backup program like cobian where you can backup without compression.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Aug 2011   #16
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Riggers View Post
Everyone seems to be hung up on system images and, whilst its clearly important to have one, I find the obsession with it a bit geeky to be honest. I'll create an image, rename it (I think I can cope with using explorer to rename a folder lol) and keep it somewhere safe.
The reasons that I harp on images is because;
1). Backups of data files are easy and are covered (for me). I use robocopy to make frequent and fast mirrors of all of my data onto 2 different external hard drives. If I run my backup once a week, it's finished in less than 2 minutes. So, my data is safe and always stored offsite. Pictures, videos, documents, budgets, passwords, etc.

2). Most people would consider the "crash" of their computer to be a monumental disaster. The time to get your OS disks, reload the OS, load your hardware drivers, run Windows update, activate the machine, find all of your software, reinstall all of your software, set all of your options within your software and restore your data can be a very long process. Having a recent image on hand reduces these hours to just minutes.

3). I think many average users are surprised to learn after backing up their data with something like the built-in tools, or a 3rd party tool for file backup...that they aren't able to simply restore the entire backup after a crash and be back up and running. Many are surprised to learn that they would have to load their os, load all of their software and then restore their actual data from their backups. Images help that problem to go away.

Reasons that I personally like to use images include
  • A virus, malware, spyware can easily be corrected with an image restore
  • never have to worry about a Windows Update causing a problem.
  • Ever experience a problem with a BSOD or other problem after installing a video driver, this can resolve it quickly.
  • i can easily switch back and forth between OS's on the same hard drive if I want to experiment with something new
  • Eliminates the need to reactivate Windows after a fresh install.
  • Can easily use the image and mount it after rebuilding to restore a file that you forgot to copy before you did a format and reinstall.
  • It's free and easy.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Riggers View Post
I'm getting very little information on the aspect that I'm most concerned about and that's finding a quick, simple and effective way of doing an incremental backup for a large amount of data.
I asked right at the start if you wanted to have multiple point in time backups of your data. If you are like me, and you only care about having a single copy of all of your pictures, music and videos...using a tool like robocopy gives you a fabulously fast and easy way to not only backup but recover your data. Since it only backs up files that have changed, it only takes as long as it takes for any new files that you may have included. With regards to backups, you never have to worry again that you Full backups and subsequent incrementals are all intact and functional. Remember, with backup software...any corruption in one of these files could render the whole backup set useless. With something like robocopy, since it's just a straight up copy of the orignal files, any corruption in a backup file is simply a problem with that 1 file only. And finally, when disaster strikes, you can quickly plug in an external drive and copy the files off from it without having to use any backup software whatsoever. Just drag and drop.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Riggers View Post
I'll try Windows 7 back up and if that proves to be too slow I'll check out some of the other products mentioned and report back.
I'm sorry to have not commented much on Windows 7 backup, but that's because I just don't use it...so I cannot talk about it with any credibility. I've just given you advice based on years of experience using other methods and tools for backing up my data.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Aug 2011   #17
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by pparks1 View Post
I'm sorry to have not commented much on Windows 7 backup, but that's because I just don't use it...so I cannot talk about it with any credibility. I've just given you advice based on years of experience using other methods and tools for backing up my data.
Windows 7 file/folder backup is fine for "modest" amounts of personal data. It depends on number of files and size.
Pros:
(1) It's built in and ready to go.
(2) It does incremental backups after the first - most of the time.
(3) Ideal for relatively small amounts of personal data (say <=10GB).
Cons:
(1) It uses ZIP files and requires a fair amount of processing. The first full backup can be slower than a full image!
(2) Although it uses incremental backup which is relatively quick, it will from time to time perform a FULL backup and make an additional clean backup set. This again will be slow and can be annoying if you have a sizable amount of data.

If this doesn't suite look at the advice already given. Consider reorganizing your data and perhaps a third party incremental imaging product.
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