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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    How do I use Backup?

    I am an average computer user with enough smarts to make me dangerous. I have an eMachine desktop with 250GB hard disk and a 320GB external backup disk. Recently my computer (running XP)crapped out and the local repair person told me the fault was in the hard disk. Since I was worried about losing data and programs I asked if he needed my backup disk. He said it was useless and he needed to use a tool to copy info from the old disk to the new 500GB disk an additional charge. If he is right my backup might be useful in some limited case(s). When I looked at the contents of the backup disk it seemed rather limited and random. At the same time I inadvertently downloaded NCH FireFort backup program which has some good reviews. I've decided to use it if I can get answers to the following questions.
    1. In what kind of problem scenarios would I use backup (full not image).
    2. How do I clear the backup disk before using a new program.
    3. Did I buy a story or should a backup disk drive be helpful for future trips to the repair shop.
    I would appreciate any help anyone could give me.
    jnvan

  2. #2
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    If you read the Lounge often enough, you will see that we recommend imaging as the best strategy to keep your data and operating system safe. You should image to the external drive and you can use multiple apps for that, some of them great and free (EaseUS ToDo Backup, Macrium Reflect free).
    If you have other backup needs, let us know, as you'd have to find some other tool for that, and the tool may vary depending on your backup needs.

    No matter what you use, you should backup regularly. It's the only way to ensure no data loss in case of hardware or software issues (even a malware infection can get you in serious problems).
    Rui
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    R4

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    jnvan (2013-09-24)

  4. #3
    Gold Lounger
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    Quote Originally Posted by jnvan View Post
    1. In what kind of problem scenarios would I use backup (full not image).
    2. How do I clear the backup disk before using a new program.
    3. Did I buy a story or should a backup disk drive be helpful for future trips to the repair shop.
    jnvan,

    Hello.... I think that there was some confusion of terms .."I was worried about losing data and programs I asked if he needed my backup disk"

    1. If your "Backup Disk" had all your Data and Info , programs , or Images.... Either he misunderstood you or he was giving you a "con job"

    2. What do you mean by Backup ..not full image ? .... Please explain .

    3. A backup disk or Hard Drive either internal or external (if done correctly ) will have everything that is on your OS ( full Image) ...So in the event of your OS having problems whether caused by a failure or something that you do ....You can get everything back ..."no problemo"

    4. There are free 3rd party programs that will do what you want ... Post back if you have more questionsRegards Fred
    PlainFred

    None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free (J. W. Von Goethe)

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    jnvan (2013-09-24)

  6. #4
    Bronze Lounger DrWho's Avatar
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    If I've typed this once, then I've probably typed it a G'zillion times.

    There is a process, to doing a backup that will save your life if your main hard drive crashes.
    If your backup and restore program was on that drive that just crashed, you're SOL (surely out of luck).
    And that tech was right, your backup is worthless. It doesn't have the information needed to rebuild your hard drive.

    Now if you had the forethought, to have your backup/restore program on a bootable CD or Flash drive, the game is afoot!
    Booting up your PC with your bootable Backup disk, you would make a whole partition backup of your "C" partition to an image file on your external drive.

    Then in the event of a main drive CRASH, you could hand that service tech your Backup/Restore CD and your external drive and say "Restore it to a new Hard drive". Any tech that could not do that should be Fired!

    Not just tech's, but many of the readers on this forum could do it too. Possibly, you could even do it yourself.

    I have no clue, and you've really not told us, just what it was that you though you were backing up.
    Just data files? That does nothing for the job of rebuilding your hard drive, after a crash.
    You need a backup that is a mirror image of your hard drive, to recover from a crash.

    Don't get me wrong, a backup of your precious data files is important too. I do an incremental backup of ALL of my data files, daily, to two (2) external drives. But I do a whole partition backup of "C" every week, to a separate hard drive.

    As a computer tech myself, one of the worse things I have to do, is restore a year old backup. Yes it gets the computer back up and running again, but it also wipes out everything that was done on that PC since that last backup was made. For that reason, I heartily recommend doing whole-drive backups at least once a week.

    Just a thought.......

    The Doctor
    Experience is truly the best teacher.

    Backup! Backup! Backup! GHOST Rocks!

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    jnvan (2013-09-24)

  8. #5
    New Lounger
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    Thanks very much to all 3. I'm so impressed and surprised at the rapid reply and the depth of all. I will have to digest all the info before I can ask any more questions.

  9. #6
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    You will actually find some step by step procedures for both Acronis True Image and Macrium Reflect that were written a while back but are still mostly appropriate with the newer versions.

    Acronis 2011

    Acronis 2010

    Macrium
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


    Sony Vaio Laptop, 2.53 GHz Duo Core Intel CPU, 8 GB RAM, 320 GB HD
    Win 8 Pro (64 Bit), IE 10 (64 Bit)


    Complete PC Specs: By Speccy

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