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Old 12-08-2010, 09:41   #51
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I do a number of things to keep backed up. My primary machine is a Mac with a Time machine backup. Time machine uses my External Raid 1 enclosure... so everything is cloned across two disks.

On the computer being backed up, I save all my files to my Dropbox folder. So every document, photo and video, Java code etc I work on goes into the dropbox folder. Dropbox not only syncs the contents of this folder, it also keeps a copy online and even keeps old versions in case I need to go back.

Finally, I've just begun to use Crashplan, which is a service I can install on all my computers and my friends's/family computers to keep off-site backups. I'll be installing an external hard drive on my Dad's mac this weekend as an off-site target for my backups. In turn I'll be installing a drive for his backups on my machine as well.

Last edited by hamster; 12-08-2010 at 09:41..
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Old 12-11-2010, 12:15   #52
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My wife and I both have data it would be quite expensive to recreate on our PCs. Losing it isn't an option.

I subscribed to CrashPlan a year ago after a close call with my DIY backup system using an external USB drive. CrashPlan allows me to back up any PC at this location, and my laptop where ever it is. My wife and I both have PC's with twin 500Gb drives connected as the C: drive in RAID 1. We also have an external USB drive. CrashPlan backs up the PC's to both their central server and to the USB connected drives. The CrashPlan SW is easy to set up (couple of minutes) and so far works perfectly. It is amazingly flexible. I can back up any PC to any other PC here or offsite or to any HD connected to any other PC here or offsite.

The RAID 1 connection covers us for disk failures and prevents related data corruption. I've had 2 disk crashes in 5 years - the second one was what prompted the subscription to CrashPlan. I have a spare drive on the shelf ready to swap out. The disk controller SW takes care of updating the new drive to match the one that didn't fail over night. The USB drive covers us for op system issues or a virus. The off site backup covers us for things like lightening strikes or fires.

Any backup scheme that doesn't automatically store a copy of the data off site is not complete coverage. The off site restore is slow, but it's a lot faster than trying to recreate the data and much more efficient that losing the data.

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Old 01-18-2011, 12:40   #53
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I wrote a Batch File that I scheduled to run every night on my PC using the XCOPY command.

Here is a sample that you can change to your liking
REM Copies files from Laptop to Backup drive

xcopy "C:\users\david\documents\work\*.*" "G:\Backup\work" /D/S/V/I/R/Y/J
xcopy "C:\users\david\documents\personal\*.*" "G:\Backup\personal" /D/S/V/I/R/Y/J

Simply write in the location of the data that you want to backup, in this case "C:\users\david\documents\work\*.*" and then edit the destination for the data, in this case "G:\Backup\work" with the command switches /D/S/V/I/R/Y/J

For an explanation of what the command switches are, refer to

It is important to make sure that your filepath to your backup never changes, otherwise your backup will fail.

I have a shared storage device on my local network, so my destination looks more like "\\\c$\Backup\work"

My backup server at home has a static IP address assigned from the router, to eliminate issues with duplicate IPs being handed out.

Once you have edited your file to include the proper filepaths using Notepad, save the file as a .BAT and run it manually from the CMD prompt. This way, you can watch to see if there are any errors when you run it. Once you tweak your Bat file to run correctly, you should see the files being copied one by one. Run it again to make sure that the Bat file is skipping those files that already exist without changes since the last backup.

After verifying that the Bat file is good to go, go to your task Scheduler and set a time when you want this bat file to run. This will allow you have your backups automatically.

I hope this helps some of you. If you are like me, your data is very important to you.
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Last edited by gemeinschaft; 01-18-2011 at 12:42.. Reason: added color to batch file layout
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Old 02-11-2011, 19:36   #54
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Originally Posted by annielulu View Post
I subscribe to For $55.00 per year they will back up your entire system and then continue to do so on a daily basis without you ever doing anything.

If you lose your data you just go online with your new or fixed computer and download all your files to your new system.

Cheap insurance.
I use Carbonite as well. Local backup (external hard drives etc) are all good and well, but if there is some disaster (house fire etc) or theft, you're screwed. At least one backup solution MUST be off site. Whether that is an external hard drive you keep outside the home or an online backup solution.

I've found carbonite to be an easy solution. After the initial backup (which can take a long time, just designate what directories you want backed up and everything is done in the background from then on
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Old 04-15-2012, 18:43   #55
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I went commercial

I can't handle wires anymore. I am wireless all the way (well, mostly). I finally gave up using an external drive and subscribed to Carbonite for three years. There are downsides -- it took a week to do the first backup and presumably it will take another week should I lose everything and do it back in the other direction. But I sleep better at night and that's what counts.

Originally Posted by bobby_w View Post
USB/Firewire external disk drives are your friend.

You really should not criticize a man until you've walked a mile in his shoes. That way you'll have a mile head start and his shoes too. :rofl:

Last edited by jeremiahjj; 04-15-2012 at 18:44..
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Old 08-22-2012, 19:43   #56
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Originally Posted by Ragin Cajun View Post
What software do you use to "mirror" the entire internal HD to the external HD?
Jumping in here -

I use a program called "Casper". It makes an exact, bootable clone. You can even take files off the clone if you need to.

Only the changes are added/deleted upon each backup.

There are many options, but I can just plug a backup drive in and go - there is no difference.

Note - Not ready for GPT disks yet.
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Old 01-15-2013, 13:52   #57
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I know this is an old thread, but I just wanted to mention that Glary Undelete is a great free file recovery program. You can also get external drives that have free backup and syncing tools, but because DVDs have such a longer shelf life I usually backup the really important stuff that way, too.
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Old 05-03-2013, 15:16   #58
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I also use Time Machine on my 2 Macs. No Windows machines in the house.
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