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Manage Back up multple ext HDDs

Discussion in 'Windows 7' started by rarodrig, Dec 18, 2011.

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  1. rarodrig

    rarodrig Thread Starter

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    I just got a second ext HDD so I can have a second copy of my back up.

    What's the best way to manage backing up two different PCs (a Vista and a Win7) to two different HDDs?

    I have been using the windows Backup and Recovery utility for the first ext HDD. The new ext. HDD came with a HP B/U utility, I think it's called something like SMARTSAVE.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Elvandil

    Elvandil

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    Make drive images. They back up everything so you can get back up even when your hard drive fails. After the first full, you can make incrementals that only back up the changes and so are small. Then you make a new full one maybe once in a while. It can also be automated so you don't even need to think about it.

    Free drive backup software (imaging, cloning, and archiving - backups can be created on a second hard drive, internal or external, or on DVD's, or BluRay disks. One BluRay disk will hold most peoples' entire system drive's backup at 25 GB's using compressed images, 50 GB's double-layer):

    Paragon Backup & Recovery (Recovery boot CD or USB key)
    Macrium Reflect (Free)
    O&O Disk Image Express or (mirror)
    Easeus Todo Backup
    Redo Backup & Recovery (Boot CD)
    Clonezilla Live (A bootable CD of Debian with Clonezilla.)
    Drive Image XML
    PING (Partimage is not Ghost) (Boot CD with option Clam Antivirus)
    Partition Saving
    Clonezilla
    Passmark OSFClone (Bootable, cloning only)

    There are also many commercial products with more features.
     
  3. rarodrig

    rarodrig Thread Starter

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    Thanks!
     
  4. Elvandil

    Elvandil

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    If you don't mind spending some cash, and believe me, if you have ever lost everything to a failed drive, the price will seem small, most of us here use Acronis True Image. It has a scheduler that you can set up to make new backups and delete the oldest ones all automatically. All you need do is check once in a while to be sure all is working as it should. (Not sure, but I think the free Macrium allows schedules to be made, too.)

    They have built-in schedules, like the "Grandfather-Father-Son" schedule that makes sure you have daily backups as well as older ones. And it deletes the oldest automatically, too.

    In the event of a hard drive failure, you put in your new drive, boot the machine with the Acronis CD, restore your image, and you're back where you were when the image was made instead of at 0 (when the machine was new). All your programs, settings, and Windows itself all back from the dead.

    On top of all that, the images can be assigned drive letter so you can get files and folders out of them without restoring the whole image. So you have all your personal files backed up and accessible, too.

    Images are the best backups possible because they back up everything, without exception. (Well, if you want to get technical, it doesn't back up "everything". It leaves out the page file, hibernation file, temp files, and other things not needed or that will be remade by Windows. The images are only about 60% the total amount of space used on the drive. So if you have 40 GB's used on your drive, the image will be about 24-30 GB's and not 40.)
     
  5. rarodrig

    rarodrig Thread Starter

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    Thanks. I was hoping for a free or inexpensive option. The HP ext HDD came with a program to do backups.
    It looks like the Win backup and the HP backup just keeps the latest backup.
     
  6. Elvandil

    Elvandil

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    The ones I linked are free.
     
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