Possible implications of this proposed backup method?

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  1. Posts : 367
    Win7Ultimate
       #1

    Possible implications of this proposed backup method?


    My main PC (W7 Ult) has three drives installed.
    Disk 0 (SATA 2TB) has two partitions, P and S. Used space is 486G and 495G respectively.
    Disk 1 (SATA 2TB) has 1122G of used space.
    Disk 2 (NVME.M2 250G) has two partitions, C and E Used space is 120G and 30MB respectively.

    The system is fairly elaborate and I'd rather not have to re-establish it piecemeal in the event of a crash. Life's too short, lol. It'd probably take me a month.
    So I'm wondering if a possible (emergency) backup method might be to copy all of the used space (2253GB) into several partitions of a new 3TB drive in such a way that the whole new thing would run on boot-up, given that the BIOS would need amending, of course.
    Your comments would be appreciated.
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  2. Posts : 15,180
    Vista x64 / 7 X64
       #2

    So I'm wondering if a possible (emergency) backup method might be to copy all of the used space (2253GB) into several partitions of a new 3TB drive in such a way that the whole new thing would run on boot-up,

    It is doable, might take a while.

    One way is to use diskgenius ( free version will do ).
    Free Download DiskGenius Online


    First do OS migration to the 3tb.

    Possible implications of this proposed backup method?-dg-osmigrate.jpg

    Then clone ( copy all files ) from the data partitions to the 3tb when you have time.

    Possible implications of this proposed backup method?-dg-copy-all-files.jpg
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  3. Posts : 367
    Win7Ultimate
    Thread Starter
       #3

    SIW2: Thanks for the comments, your suggestion looks very dooable. The 3TB is cheapish (for NZ-$118) but it's only a 5400 rpm, so once I got it up and running, I'd clone its partitions back to the original separate drives.
    It'd be ideal if it were possible to incrementally or differentially update the 3TB, once its partitions had been cloned, and it was again outside the system, but maybe that'd be a bridge too far
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  4. Posts : 15,180
    Vista x64 / 7 X64
       #4

    incrementally or differentially update the 3TB, once its partitions had been cloned
    I dont know any free tools that can differentially update a cloned partition. I believe Casper does that, it is used by radiology labs and similar. Most programs that make disk/partition images can do it with the image files.

    Another way could be to do the os migration with diskgenius, then create images of the other partitions which can then be updated.

    If you get a big enough disk, you could have the migrated os partitions at the beginning of the disk, and create a partition at the end to store the image files.

    Then in an emergency you would be able to boot into the migrated os on the new disk and restore those image files as and when needed .
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  5. Posts : 6,086
    Windows 7 Ultimate x64
       #5

    Just note that a backup in the computer its self may get destroyed via a power issue or nearby or direct lightning strike. Never mind the biggest issue of a possible malware infection.

    You'll want to store your HDDs out of the computer and in a fire proof safe. Not really necessary, but data is pretty damn important today to not invest in a ~$35 fire proof safe. I have three. The locks on these can be opened very easily with a flat head screw driver or what ever, but that's not their interned purpose. The purpose is fire and water mitigation with my data and paper documents like car title, school diplomas, etc. Note that you should store paper in plastic sleeves and thumb drives, HDDs etc in sandwich bags. Reason is because if God forbid there was a fire the contents inside the safe will get moist.


    For a hard drive I'd look into some of the Hitachi enterprise platter versions. Even used will suffice. Why? Because they are documented to be great drives and have a very good MTBF (Mean Time Before Failure). I have three or four (can't remember off hand) for air gaped backups. They didn't cost very much and I did buy them used on eBay which of course have several thousand hours on them already but knowing full well what a reliable drive they were it didn't concern me in the slightest. And my sentiments have been proved correct because it's been several years and still going. Also, it's not like they are powered on constantly either. Only for the duration of the backup then powered off and stored away. Actually, one of them now (a 2TB) is on all the time when the computer is running as drive "G" serving the function of the downloads location of files, data spill over and minor backup purposes. It currently has over 26,600 hours on it thus far.


    You might be interested in FreeFileSync. I have this setup to fire off its batch file on PC boot up for backup purposes to the aforementioned "G" drive. It's just one of many in a line of duplicate backups. I also backup individual tier 1 data independent and dependent of the full HDD clone. So, there's the clones and there's the data backups. And the clones also have the data that was backed up. You'll also want to test your backup strategy by deploying it and making sure it works as intended.

    You might be interested in my two massive posts on my unorthodox method here. LOL! ( I admit. I felt like part Ambrose Bierce and Isaac Asimov when I wrote that). HAHAHAHA!

    No, it's not gonna address your piecemeal needs, but HDD Raw Copy Tool used for the OS HDD and deploying FreeFileSync could be a solution.
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  6. Posts : 367
    Win7Ultimate
    Thread Starter
       #6

    SIW2 said:
    If you get a big enough disk, you could have the migrated os partitions at the beginning of the disk, and create a partition at the end to store the image files.
    SIW2: Good call, I'll do it that way. I'd previously bought a 4TB SATA 7200 that I'd intended to mount in an Orico USB3 case for file backup. Instead, I've mounted it directly in the PC case, so, as you suggested, I can backup the OS to a first partition there and increment it as needed, with other file backups going to other partitions.

    F22 Simpilot: Thanks for the tips, I'll check out the FileSync software.
    Last edited by teckneeculler; 22 May 2022 at 19:23.
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  7. Posts : 15,180
    Vista x64 / 7 X64
       #7

    These things are useful, fit into a 5.25 bay on the front of the pc, has sata connections and is only turned on when needed. I have a couple and they are very convenient.

    They are hard to find here,you might be able to get them easily in your area

    Dual Bay 3.5"+2.5" Inch SATA III Hard Drive HDD & SSD Tray Caddy Internal Mobile Rack Enclosure with USB 3.0 Port Hot Swap: Amazon.co.uk: Computers & Accessories
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  8. Posts : 6,086
    Windows 7 Ultimate x64
       #8

    Yeah, I have one of these. It's nice to boot different OSs because my preferred way to do that is in a clean state without other hard drives running at the same time and not the use of partitions that can go *poof* and disappear and what have you. But, and this is a big "but." It's still not something one would want to consider for backup purposes unless it augments another backup HDD that is in cold storage, i.e. air gaped and in a fireproof safe. Might be a little extreme, but even though the power to the HDD is turned on or off via the switch, the SATA connectors are still connected which is a perfect channel for electrical chaos should it enter the connector. And of course fire and water mitigation is not there.

    Those fireproof safes are only about $35 American on eBay. Less than a stick of RAM or even a dedicated sound card or the price of some basic mouse. Well worth the investment in my opinion. If one had the money you could put the fireproof safe in a bigger safe meant for security and is bolted to the floor and preferably hidden in plain sight. Think false closet wall and what have you. Security through obscurity is a layer I use. The United States Secret Service uses layers... Concentric circles of protection layers... (it's also math) Anyway... LOL I'm into this stuff and read books on it al all the time. At one time I wanted to work for the CIA or the U.S. Secret Service. Today, I got smarter... LOL!
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  9. Posts : 15,180
    Vista x64 / 7 X64
       #9

    That is very different. The point of of the front caddies is to pop disks in and out easily. No need to dig around inside the machine.

    Slide in a disk, do the backup to it, then either leave it there and only power on when needed. Or slide it out and put it in the nuclear shelter..
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  10. Posts : 367
    Win7Ultimate
    Thread Starter
       #10

    SIW2 said:
    These things are useful, fit into a 5.25 bay on the front of the pc, has sata connections and is only turned on when needed. I have a couple and they are very convenient.
    There once were similar items available in NZ and I've used them myself, although the hot swap capability wasn't reliable. But I've never seen a double height caddy like that one. I also used the the earlier IDE models extensively, one of my old workshop machines was set up to run a selection of OS's that were mounted in caddies.
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