|First off, if you partition your hard drive into multiple partitions you will find that the partitions will need imaging at different intervals. The OS partition will need the most frequent attention. That partition may only contain say 8GB of actual data which can easily fit on 2 DVDR disks. |
Ghost typically compresses the data to about 2/3 the starting size if you use default settings. Of course data that is already compressed can't be compressed much further and imaging that type of data is a wasted effort. Better to just straight up make copies. jpg and mp3 files fall into this category.
If you install your programs to a different partition than the OS you may find that you won't need to image very often.
One important point to make at this time is this. If you have programs on a second partition and you need to restore the OS partition the programs on the second partition will run fine without any intervention on your part.
So you see, if you use multiple partitions you won't need to image the entire drive each time.
If that doesn't sound good enough then here is another bonus. The latest version of Acronis true image can perform an incremental backup/image. That means it only writes the data that has changed since the last full backup. I don't know if the latest Ghost can do that of not.
IMHO optical media is the most dependable and cheapest method of backup. Additionally, once an image is made you can duplicate the image in a few minutes for pennies. Keeping more than one backup is extra insurance. Consider keeping a backup at an off site location. I have a safety deposit box that is wide enough to hold 5 1/4 disks.
For convenience you may elect to use a second hard drive for some backups.
I currently use Ghost 2003 and write to DVDR/CDR media for my primary imaging and to an external USB drive for supplemental backups.
Look at the link below for additional information on partitioning.