View Full Version : Whats the best way to back-up your entire notebook?
Have the Toshiba M35 S320, don't have a lot on it right now but don't want to lose what I have. External hard drive?
This topic comes up every week.
Do you really want to back the whole system up?
Does the Laptop have a CD Burner?
Then for now just back up your files.
If you want to do a full backup of your computer there are tons of options.
The external Hard Drive is a pretty good place to start also.
Most backup programs are designed for backing up your data not your software, if you have a hard disk crash, the ability to restore your backed-up data won't get your computer working again. You need to restore your Windows operating system before you can use your backup. You can use drive imaging software such as Ghost to create an image of your OS and your installed applications. That image along with a backup of your data is the best/fastest way to go.
Whether you use both drive imaging backup programs and data backup programs, remember that your data (documents, e-mail, addresses, favorites, etc ...) is the most important, you can always reinstall the OS and applications but can you live without your data?
How often you backup your data will depend on how much your system gets used, what kind of data is to be backed up, and how often you change the data you want to protect. If the data is critical then you want to have a couple copies and even store a copy off site. You should also replace the media used for your backups periodically ... nothing last forever.
I swap out the HDD into a USB 2.0 enclosure, install a fresh (and normally much larger) HDD, and either Ghost the drive image to the new HDD partition or just install the OS onto the new drive.
Then I can use the files and folders, now safely archived on the external drive, to fill in the blanks, so to speak.
That won't work nearly as easily with a laptop, however, so I'd just copy the Windows folder onto the formatted HDD, then Program Files, and then My Documents and any other personal files you'd like to archive.
In this manner everything from vital XP files (for replacing in case of virus or corruption) to game saves and addy books is right there, waiting to be used.
Pawn shop buddy got a bunch of computer (stuff) in and just so happens there was a external HD. Fire wire works fast too. All backed up.
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