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Windows 7: Best software for file duplication & incremental backup


16 Feb 2014   #1

Windows 7 64 bit
 
 
Best software for file duplication & incremental backup

What is the best software for file duplication & incremental backup?

I've tried the Windows backup utility, and it creates a .bkp file. It needs to be unzipped - meaning additional space is required.

I've tried Acronis - and it functions similarly to Windows backup utility. And the Acronis customer support people are unwilling to provide assistance - even though I paid for the product.

I've tried Unstoppable Copier by Roadkil. Sometimes it doesn't copy every file and sometimes it will rename the directories, making the new directory appear to Windows to be empty.

I've tried Goodsync, but by the time I was able to run sufficient tests to see if it suited my needs, it asked me to buy the software.

I try the good ole' drag 'n drop, but it won't copy directories with names that are too long.

What software can duplicate all the files in a large directory without any problems? And if I wish to do incremental backups, what will work for that as well?

Thanks!


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16 Feb 2014   #2

Windows 7, 64 bit Home SP1, Win 8.1.1 Pro 64 bit
 
 

Macrium Reflect has an option to copy files and folders, along with being drive backup software.

There is a free version, but not sure if it will copy files as I have the paid version. It will also do incremental backups, although I don't use those - I only do full backups. Its easy, when restoring to get an incremental backup out of order and then the entire backup is messed up.
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16 Feb 2014   #3

Windows 7 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by fireberd View Post
Macrium Reflect has an option to copy files and folders, along with being drive backup software.

There is a free version, but not sure if it will copy files as I have the paid version. It will also do incremental backups, although I don't use those - I only do full backups. Its easy, when restoring to get an incremental backup out of order and then the entire backup is messed up.
Thanks for the info. Do you know if Macrium Reflect will resolve the copying issues (likely due to long file names & auto-renamed directories) which I have described at Folder sizes do not match after successful backup
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16 Feb 2014   #4

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by fireberd View Post
Macrium Reflect has an option to copy files and folders, along with being drive backup software.

There is a free version, but not sure if it will copy files as I have the paid version. It will also do incremental backups, although I don't use those - I only do full backups. Its easy, when restoring to get an incremental backup out of order and then the entire backup is messed up.
The free version of Macrium Reflect doesn't support incremental backups. One has to get the paid version to get that.

To the OP: If you have your operating system, programs, etc. on their own drive or partition, you would be better off not using incremental backups. They have been known to be problematic because you need all the backups made to do a restoration. If just one backup file gets lost or corrupted, the entire backup will be lost. Full images are far safer and don't take up all that much room.

Data backups are best done with a folder/file syncing program, such as what you were discussing in your other thread. If your folder size discrepancy is being caused by file length issues, it means your folder names and filenames are too long: you need to shorten them.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Feb 2014   #5
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

AOMEI Backupper is a good option. It provides all the functions you are looking for and it is free. Not sure though about the long names. That is a Windows restriction. Maybe Robocopy in cmd will do it. This is what it does:

Microsoft Windows [Version 6.1.7601]
Copyright (c) 2009 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.
C:\Windows\system32>robocopy "C:\Users\whs\Pictures" "S:\Storage" *.* /COPY:DAT /E
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
ROBOCOPY :: Robust File Copy for Windows
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Started : Sun Feb 16 16:00:09 2014
Source : C:\Users\whs\Pictures\
Dest : S:\Storage\
Files : *.*
Options : *.* /S /E /COPY:DAT /R:1000000 /W:30
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
New Dir 2 C:\Users\whs\Pictures\
100% New File 504 desktop.ini
100% New File 2.1 m Thumbs.db
New Dir 5 C:\Users\whs\Pictures\Cropped wildlife\
100% New File 415232 Thumbs.db
100% New File 3.1 m vlcsnap-2013-01-23-20h25m52s49.png
100% New File 1028385 vlcsnap-2013-01-23-20h31m11s165.jpg
100% New File 8.4 m vlcsnap-2013-01-23-20h31m11s165.png
100% New File 3.6 m vlcsnap-2013-01-23-20h34m40s212.png
New Dir 5 C:\Users\whs\Pictures\Pictures\
100% New File 756550 123.png
100% New File 84 desktop.ini
100% New File 4.5 m Lastschrift Steuer.png
100% New File 323072 Thumbs.db
100% New File 767221 Untitled.png
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total Copied Skipped Mismatch FAILED Extras
Dirs : 3 3 0 0 0 0
Files : 12 12 0 0 0 0
Bytes : 25.16 m 25.16 m 0 0 0 0
Times : 0:00:00 0:00:00 0:00:00 0:00:00

Speed : 88549597 Bytes/sec.
Speed : 5066.848 MegaBytes/min.
Ended : Sun Feb 16 16:00:10 2014
C:\Windows\system32>
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Feb 2014   #6

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 / WinXP Pro x86 on (2)
 
 

I use NovaBACKUP Professional (non-free) for my "data" backups (monthly FULL and daily INCREMENTAL, with the past 4 complete "monthly sets" retained before the oldest generation getting automatically "groomed" away). The product supports both "copy" and "backup/restore" capability for "data" as well as having its own proprietary "system image" capability, but I only use "data" backup/restore.

Note that only a true "backup" program (supporting multiple generations) can provide complete recovery capability for older versions of folders/files than you might currently have on your system. In other words using a COPY method is NOT really doing a "backup", in my opinion.

I also use Macrium Reflect Standard (non-free) for my weekly "system image" backups.

I much prefer the GUI and feature list for backup/restore in NovaBACKUP to the similar capability in Macrium Reflect Standard, which is why I've divided my backup solution to be handled by two separate products.

And I much prefer the "system image" features and GUI from Macrium Reflect Standard, which is why I use it instead of NovaBACKUP for that purpose.
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16 Feb 2014   #7

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

FreeFileSync is a Folder/File "copying" program that has a versioning option. Any folders or files deleted from the destination drive can be sent to a folder instead of just being deleted. As far as I'm concerned, that makes it a "true" backup program.
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16 Feb 2014   #8

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 / WinXP Pro x86 on (2)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Lady Fitzgerald View Post
FreeFileSync is a Folder/File "copying" program that has a versioning option. Any folders or files deleted from the destination drive can be sent to a folder instead of just being deleted. As far as I'm concerned, that makes it a "true" backup program.
Perhaps.

But for me, proper "versioning" as implemented for the purpose of restore/recovery must have a feature of the software that allows for "time-based restore"... performed automatically by the software with zero manual effort on my part.

In other words I have a current version of a file (or, maybe I don't... because I deleted it at some point in the past). I now want to recover ANY prior version of that file, as determined by "most current version as of some date/time", going backwards from right now (i.e. the most current version contained on any backup dataset) through any date/time older than that. For example, I want to recover the one specifically from last Saturday night, or maybe three weeks ago Wednesday, or whatever... and I want the software to do it for me automatically, without my having to know which particular backup dataset (FULL or INCREMENTAL, from this month's set or any prior set going back through the 4 complete months I retain) that version must be picked up from.

Or, maybe I have multiple folder(s)/file(s) I want to recover, and the most current version as of a specific point in time may need to be picked up from any number of backup datasets, depending on which monthly FULL or daily INCREMENTAL backup dataset that particular time-sensitive version lives on.

In other words I specify the date/time (NovaBackup uses a "time slider" to represent that, which you pull backwards to the left with "current date/time" being at the extreme right) and simply check the folder(s)/file(s) I want to recover (as of that specified date/time) from an intuitive "checkbox" Explorer Tree view (produced by the software by "summing" the XML logs of every backup job run over the past 4 months, thus producing an Explorer Tree of EVERYTHING contained on ANY backup dataset).

And then it's up to the program to use the proper one or more different backup datasets to get exactly "the most current version as of the specified date/time" of each requested folder/file I've checked. It may all come from one backup dataset, or it may require access to any number of backup datasets, to satisfy my request. And it's all done automatically by the software, with me only specifying (a) as-of date/time, and (b) folder(s)/file(s) I want to recover the most current version of as of that date/time. And I can specify the restored folder(s)/file(s) go to either (a) the original location, or (b) some other target location.

Having say 120 backup datasets (for 4 months of daily/monthly backup jobs) to potentially recover any folder/file from, I want the simplest possible GUI to make this happen with my involvement being next to zero. NovaBACKUP's "time-based restore" feature is terrific in this regard.
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17 Feb 2014   #9

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ult. x64 Windows 8.1 x64
 
 

Another option to consider.

SyncToy - Backup User Data
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07 May 2014   #10

Windows 7 64 bit
 
 

I've tried another one called SyncBack Free backup software - SyncBack Freeware - free data backup software

I have found that after a backup which SyncBack identifies as successful, I'll right click & do properties on both the source and destination and they don't match. Then when I dig deep to find the culprit folder, I'll copy that one via drag & drop. Then they match. Does anyone have any idea what's up with this?
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