Back-up software for windows 7

Discussion in 'Windows 7' started by .Matt., Sep 24, 2010.

  1. .Matt.

    .Matt. MDL Novice

    Jan 10, 2010
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    Hi all,

    before you say: 'just google it' or 'use the search function'. I did, but the info I got wasn't clear or conclusive. So I'm asking here:

    I want to create a system image of my entire hard drive including partitions, but:
    • The software must be able to exclude specified folders
    • The software must be able to update an existing system image without creating a new one

    The programs I've come across (Windows backup, Acronis and the like.) can't seem to do this correctly. It may be that I'm doing something wrong or just haven't looked in the right place, in that case please tell me where those functions are.

    thanks in advance.
     
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  2. .Matt.

    .Matt. MDL Novice

    Jan 10, 2010
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    Thanks for the quick reply, but unfortunately that is not what I'm looking for, since it seems to create a recovery partition which means I'll have to format my hard drive which I really don't want right now. Also, it doesn't seem to be able to update the created partition/image.
     
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  3. Matrix Leader

    Matrix Leader MDL Addicted

    Dec 8, 2009
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    Acronis True Image is the best
     
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  4. .Matt.

    .Matt. MDL Novice

    Jan 10, 2010
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    I've just taken a look at the new Acronis True Image 2011, and it seems to be able (to some extent: updating an existing image without creating a new one seems to be impossible.. sadly..) to do pretty much anything I want, including file/folder exclusion. So thanks for your suggestions everyone, I think I'll give Acronis a go :)
     
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  5. Anakunda

    Anakunda MDL Senior Member

    Feb 6, 2010
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    as for updating existing image this is almost impossible and personally I didnot hear ever about such a feature

    why do ya need update existing image? what's the difference between full recreating..
     
  6. .Matt.

    .Matt. MDL Novice

    Jan 10, 2010
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    Mostly the time it takes to perform: the system image I'm creating will be 150+ GB. But apparently, system images do not seem to work similar to ISO or RAR archives in terms of updating/changing content.

    But indeed, maybe I'm a little too demanding ;) I'll just backup at night when I don't have to use the PC...
     
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  7. Anakunda

    Anakunda MDL Senior Member

    Feb 6, 2010
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    backup images are important to obey drive integrity which would be broken by updating image.
    if ya want update mostly stationary system image then give atry to paragon HDM or B&R, it does provide differential backup option.
     
  8. .Matt.

    .Matt. MDL Novice

    Jan 10, 2010
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    Yeah, differential or incremental backup is what comes very close to updating. I just thought maybe it would be possible to update, but apparently it isn't :p
    Luckily Acronis offers these options too with a space-saving 'plan': every 5th incremental/differential backup a new full backup is created. The old backups will get deleted which will, in my case, save space :)
     
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  9. myhken

    myhken Experienced MDL Tester

    Feb 28, 2010
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    Acronis True Image 2010 (2011) is the best software out there. I have used Acronis for several years now, and I'm very happy. And I can still open images taken for 5-6 years ago with the new versions of True Image.
    It compresses the files very good, around 50% or more for the OS files. And it's fast.
    I like that I can use the Recovery CD to connect to my network and take backup or restore backup from my server to the computer I'm using Acronis on.

    When I help people setting up new computers, or old computers with new software, I'm using Acronis to take a image, so I don't have to use so much time next time they need my help.
     
  10. Matrix Leader

    Matrix Leader MDL Addicted

    Dec 8, 2009
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    The nice thing I like about Acronis True Image, is thaty ou can make a backup of your system partition which contains Windows While you are in the Windows environment. Furthermore, restoring or making an image takes about 5 minutes.......I usually restore my laptop back to its perfect state within 7 minutes.....

    You want my personal advice? Don't get the 2011 version, get the 2010 version Acronis True Image Home 2010 v13 Build 5055, it's much more stable in my experience. It always gets the job done perfectly and it even allows you to create a BOOT CD incase of OS failure, you can simply boot to the Acronis UI and do the restore from there :)
     
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  11. Sled Dog

    Sled Dog MDL Novice

    Jan 14, 2010
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    Image For Windows

    I have been using it for over a year. Never had it fail. They also have Image For Linux and Dos. I bought those and BootIt Next Generation when they had a package deal. You can backup windows while it is running or from a cd boot disk etc. Backup to usb drive, or most any other drive-Dvd.. Good compression. Backup Changed Data - Differential backup option allows you to backup only data that has changed since the last full backup was created. The list of features is long. They are Terabyte Unlimited.
     
  12. acyuta

    acyuta MDL Expert

    Mar 8, 2010
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    Of course, ATIH 2010 or 2011 is the fastest in terms of making images or restoring from them. Even the boot Cd loads fastest. However, in 3 installs, I have had only headaches with it with inevitable formating of not only the c: drive but also the drive it makes backup to. That takes care of all the speed. It seems to be only the major backup program that loads some stuff into the boot loader and where else.

    After these experiences, I only use ATIH as a boot CD option and keep Paragon HDM 2010 Pro in Windows. Seems easy enough to me and so far 100% reliable. I recently bought a WD caviar black HDD which gives me a stripped down version of ATIH 2010 (called Acronis for WD or something). That seems to have no such option of inserting stuff into the boot loader. Just plain backup and restore.

    At least in my experience of using backup softwares, I think Paragon HDM is the only software that in windows it offers for restore images made before installing it. Suppose you made an image through boot CD at time t, then installed software at t+1. The software in windows should offer all images of its type (spf, tib, v2i, etc). No such luck with ATIH, ShadowProtect, or ghost (can still use the boot cd); but no problems with Paragon.
     
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  13. acyuta

    acyuta MDL Expert

    Mar 8, 2010
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    Since I became using backup softwares (windows 7, early 2010), I have realised that perhaps the best strategy would be keep backups with 2 softwares for really important stages. I generally keep a backup with windows 7, 1 boot cd software, and perhaps 1 from windows 7.
    At least I have seen that nearly all major softwares have very little problems in backing up. The mess up or failure can happen in restoring, at least with me.
    Keeping backups with 2 softwares is not a problem, since all major softwares come with a boot cd, and one can easily backup without installing.
    It does take more space keeping 3 backups of major stages, but then I only need 6-9 images in total (3 images each of 2-3 major stages) or around 100 GB. The last stage is easily deleted and overwritten. Even the first major stage is restored and refreshed every week. Hardly a 25-30 mins job.
     
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  14. acyuta

    acyuta MDL Expert

    Mar 8, 2010
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    Just joking, but with that kind of heavy duty hardware, and the cheap labour costs in India, I would be better off hiring someone to reinstall my computer.
     
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  15. .Matt.

    .Matt. MDL Novice

    Jan 10, 2010
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    Thanks for all the suggestions ^^. For now I'll test Acronis and if that doesn't work I'll try some of the other programs posted here. Also, I'm getting a usb 3.0 disk for data storage and backup so it'll probably get faster :)
     
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  16. acyuta

    acyuta MDL Expert

    Mar 8, 2010
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    #20 acyuta, Sep 28, 2010
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2010
    These hard disk docks could be extremely useful to me if available here in our country. Over the last few months, I have gradually replaced 500 GB internal HDD with 1 TB internal HDD, and soon with 2 TB HDD going for roundabout Rs. 5000-5500 in India (US$100 for Seagate Barracuda LP), some 1 TB internal could also go. I have 5 internal HDDs which are perhaps 1-2 too many. With perhaps 2 *2 TB HDD expected in the next few months, at least 3 internal 1TB HDD could be superfluous and could easily be used for this. My vendor usually takes the replaced HDD back, but the price given is lousy (more like 25% of existing prices, which are anyway more like 40% of the price I paid). So if I paid US$75 for a 500 GB HDD, I will get maybe US$16-18. That HDD still has a lot of life (maybe used for less than a year).

    The problem in India is availability and for using internal HDD as external, one gets only a HDD casing which is very bad quality with those pin type (last decade) connections at one end. They are not meant to be used frequently and prone to breakage with frequent use.

    One query: with the above solutions, I insert a HDD into one of these external detachable equipment, plug the equipment into my PC, and transfer the data from my PC. That simple??.
     
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