Backup software: what do you recomend

  johnincrete 16:23 20 Nov 14

I need to add a backup program to my daughter's computer. What do you recomend? It is still using Windows XP and there are two hard disks. Ideally, I would like to set it up to automatically backup on Friday after midnight.

  Batch 16:28 20 Nov 14

By way of backup, do you want to just backup selected files (e.g. documents, photos, music, videos, email etc.) or do you want to backup the complete system (e.g. make an image of one or both of the disks?

In any event, how are the disks currently utilised. E.g. is each just a single partition or what? And what is stored on each disk / partition?

Tied in with this, what medium do you want to backup to? One of the disks to the other or to an external disk or pen drive or...?

  robintheumpteenth 18:07 20 Nov 14

Press Windows key + R and type diskmgmt.msc to see what you have.

  alanrwood 19:47 20 Nov 14

A great free program is FBackup. It does everything you wish.

  johnincrete 06:55 21 Nov 14

Batch: On one disk, backup of "my documents" is required with an initial backup of the full system (which rarely changes). The second disk is all data of one sort or another and so the whole disk needs backing up. Both my daughter & I have large external disks and after both our systems are backed up, my disk will be taken to her school & her's will come to me. Both disks are a single partition.

  Batch 09:13 21 Nov 14

Sounds to me like you should use imaging software to do the copies of the whole disks.

I use Macrium Reflect Free these days and it works fine for me. The free edition (at least the one I have, which is about a 20 months old now) only does disk imaging, not backup of individual files / folders. Others maybe able to recommend other (free) alternatives that do both. But Fbackup seems to just do the file / folder backup (so you could use that alongside Macrium Reflect).

You say about setting up to run automatically backup on Friday after midnight. If the backup is to be to an external hard disk, then that disk needs to be up and running at the time. Also, If you are going to put the disks "off-site" as you have indicated, how is that going to work? Maybe its just the documents you want to do weekly (e.g. to a pen drive). Again, Fbackup sounds like it should do the job.

One note on the likes of imaging software. Don't forget to make a bootable recovery CD / DVD (and test it workds) otherwise you will be stuck if you need to restore the system disk.

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