PC Backup Solutions

Microsoft Windows 7 ultimate 64-bit
June 28, 2011 at 04:26:44
Specs: Windows 7, 4.1GHz i5 660/4GB DDR31066
Hi

I'm wondering if a program exists that would keep a backup of my PC as follows:

Backup Windows/Windows updates.
Backup certain programs, updates and preferences etc e.g. Microsoft Office, Fireworks.
Backup Folders/files.

The aim would be to constantly have a "fresh" fully updated backup which contains Windows and all the updates installed as well as certain programs/updates/preferences. So that restoring the image produces a useable system right away which is fully updated and contains all the software I need.

Matt


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#1
June 28, 2011 at 04:38:17
I believe Windows back up can handle this, but you will need a second hard drive installed internally or always plugged in if external for the back up destination.

You have to be a little bit crazy to keep you from going insane.


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#2
June 28, 2011 at 12:39:15
I use Acronis True Image personally. It came with my intel mainboard and works great. It's $50 at staples according to their website. I know it's sold at Bestbuy too. You can back it up to another computer in appended backups or to a network drive.

-Brandon
Windows Networking/IT Support specialist


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#3
July 22, 2011 at 03:56:58
I recommend Handy Backup, reliable software for Windows backup, it can back up certain programs, folders, files and so on.

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#4
July 22, 2011 at 09:07:56
What you are looking for is a program that makes an image file of the entire hard drive and allows you to rebuild from the file. This is not a software backup which can't create a restore option you are looking for.

True Image can backup the drive to a file on a second internal or an external drive. Another option is Norton's Ghost.

You have 2 options with these programs. You can backup to a file on the second drive, or using a similar sized drive you can clone the drive with the existing configuration to the drive.

The cloning option if the drive is the same size has the advantage of being quickly switched to become the boot and no rebuilding is needed. Since it duplicates the existing drive it contains all software, updates and data from the source drive. Depending on the frequency of the cloning you get back online with everything in place from the date cloning was done.

To sum up backing up only lets you save data and some critical files. It takes effort to do an install to a fresh drive in the event the failure is the working drive. Cloning gives you an exact working copy of the drive and is quickly activated as a replacement. In the event of hard drive failure it is the quickest way to restore the system. In either scenario the data is only as good as the time between backups.

Cloning is best done when you are not using the system for any purpose other than cloning.

Rich


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