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Backup Options

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Epic, Apr 1, 2006.

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  1. Epic

    Epic Thread Starter

    Oct 25, 2002
    I tend to backup my data every six months or so. This is mostly a non-work PC, so it wouldn't cost me a fortune to lose it. Still, it would be quite a headache. I used to use a CD writer, which got very cumbersome (last CD backup spanned 27 discs!). My new PC has a DVD burner, so DVD is much more sensible. Still, it's a pain to swap discs and keep track of files.

    Basically, I'm very tempted by the thought of using an external HDD to backup my data. Best of all, I wouldn't have to use fresh media for every backup since I could write over files I've already backed up. I'm imagining an external HDD that would be stored away until backups every few months. Should I be aware of any reliability issues with drives versus optical media? If hard drives are a reasonable solution, what brand/type would you recommend?

    Thanks for reading.
  2. kiwiguy


    Aug 17, 2003
    An external USB drive would be fine, however unless you have USB 2.0 hardware, it will be s-l-o-w.

    Another cheap option is to use "removeable caddies" that hold a standard HDD internally and fit in a standard 5-1/4" bay. They connect to the IDE bus and give full speed transfer. I use these on every PC here.

    As for the best HDD, I have had failures from all makes, but my preferences would be Seagate first, Seagate second and Seagate third...
  3. erick295


    Mar 27, 2005
    You would be better off sticking with DVD's for a few reasons. First and foremost, hard drives are very unreliable. I would never consider anything stored on a hard drive to be permanent. Secondly, overwriting your old backups is not neccessarily a good idea. Why not archive them so you have more copies?

    Hard drives are great for frequent backups (about every two weeks I copy everything to an external drive), but I would never trust one to be a primary backup. Every six months or so, I back everything up to two sets of DVD's - one stays at home, and the other goes into a safe deposit box. I never throw away the old sets.
  4. techkid


    Sep 1, 2004
    First Name:
    erick295 is right. An external hard drive is useful only if you are backing up frequently. Otherwise DVDs would be a more permanent and prominent choice.
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