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Windows 7: External backup hard drive

28 May 2015   #1
tonyvella

windows 7 Home Premium
 
 
External backup hard drive

I back up all my changed folders (usually 2 or 3) every evening to an external hard drive. Is it advisable to have the ext. HD plugged into the laptop all the time [usb], or should I plug it in just for the backup operation which never takes more than 2 or 3 minutes? Thanks in advance.


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28 May 2015   #2
GokAy

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

I would keep it removed.
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28 May 2015   #3
Boozad

W7 Pro x64 SP1 | W10 Pro IP x64 | W8.1 Pro x64 VM | Linux Mint VM
 
 

Mine stays plugged in all the time, has been for over two years. Shouldn't matter either way as long as you don't do anything stupid.
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28 May 2015   #4
Layback Bear

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

I remove my back up drives when not in use.
It keep backup safe from hardware problems, infection, power loss problems and just general mistakes made by the user.

It takes but a few seconds to unhook and re-hook when needed.
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28 May 2015   #5
Boozad

W7 Pro x64 SP1 | W10 Pro IP x64 | W8.1 Pro x64 VM | Linux Mint VM
 
 

I'm way too lazy for that.
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28 May 2015   #6
RolandJS

Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by tonyvella View Post
I back up all my changed folders (usually 2 or 3) every evening to an external hard drive...which never takes more than 2 or 3 minutes?
Do you keep several versions of the same files? Or, does the current nightly backup replace the previous night's backup?
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28 May 2015   #7
Lady Fitzgerald

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

I also advise keeping the drive disconnected except when updating a backup. If the drive is kept connected, a virus or other malware would be able to corrupt not only the data on the computer but also on the backup drive.

RolandJS brings up a good point about versioning. It's always a good idea to keep multiple versions of your files in case a recent copy of a backup should also become corrupted. FreeFileSync is a folder/file syncing program that, when set to Mirror mode, is excellent for backing up data (not system files, however) and has an optional versioning feature built in. However, even versioning cannot protect your data if the backup drive is kept connected to the computer all the time.
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28 May 2015   #8
tonyvella

windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by RolandJS View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by tonyvella View Post
I back up all my changed folders (usually 2 or 3) every evening to an external hard drive...which never takes more than 2 or 3 minutes?
Do you keep several versions of the same files? Or, does the current nightly backup replace the previous night's backup?
I keep only one backup. Today's backup replaces only the folders changed since yesterday.
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28 May 2015   #9
tonyvella

windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

I'm the OP.
I have had mine plugged in all the time for a couple of years - since the day I bought it, actually. I have not had any problems but I attribute that more to good luck than knowledge ... MENSA has never contacted me with an application form for membership. I think, however, from now on I shall unplug it and plug it in only when backing up or backuping.
Thanks to all for info, advice and instruction.
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29 May 2015   #10
RolandJS

Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
 
 

MENSA never contacted me either! Regarding backups, I must be "lucky" or God-blessed, 'cause I only have at the most 1 version back. Maybe I need to look into FreeFileSync versioning much more closely. LadyF, do you remember the clicks I need to do?
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