Acronis True Image is a tried-and-tested backup program that creates a complete copy of your hard drive. Should your PC be hit by disaster, True Image will restore your OS, applications and data.

Previous versions have been fairly slick and easy to use; version 10.0 does not fail in this regard. Probably the most important upgrade – and certainly something you will need to consider if you are about to purchase a PC – is that the program now supports Windows Vista. But it has added protection for popular application settings, such as iTunes or Office, backup support for Outlook and the ability to copy digital media files easily and securely, too.

While the latest release is fairly speedy, Acronis makes full use of what it calls 'Snap Restore'. In effect, users can boot into the operating system even before recovery is complete and get back to work while restoration continues in the background. Backups can be saved to a wide range of devices, such as FireWire and USB drives or CD and DVD media. Alternatively, you can create a Secure Zone on your PC – a hidden partition to store data.

Most users will want to use the fairly simple front end to back up and restore a disk. But True Image provides extra control to schedule backups, exclude certain files or folders and to speed up the process by making incremental backups – where only changes made since the last save are added. In any case, you can continue to work on your PC while an image is created.

Acronis True Image 10.0 Home: Specs

  • 166MHz Pentium
  • Windows 2000/XP SP 2/Vista
  • 128MB RAM
  • 150MB hard disk space
  • 166MHz Pentium
  • Windows 2000/XP SP 2/Vista
  • 128MB RAM
  • 150MB hard disk space

OUR VERDICT

True Image is extremely effective. As it boots from CD, you can restore your files even if the OS completely crashes. Add to this the fact that Acronis includes PC cloning tools and this is a comprehensive package. We often use Acronis to save data, but version 10.0 is a welcome upgrade. If you don't already have it, this is indispensable.

Find the best price