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  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Tucson, AZ, USA
    Thanked 3 Times in 3 Posts

    I need a quick primer on backup

    Just built a spiffy new machine with two brand new 1 T drives. On C:/ I put the OS, my files, a bottle of scotch and other necessities, about 500 G. D:/ I gave to the OS to use as a backup and I have written nothing to it myself. It has five whole Gb left after a month of use and I get warnings that it is short on space. Indeed.

    Clearly, I have done something wrong in the setup. W7 is saving stuff to D but not removing anything old. Now, it's full. I have looked around for a solution but can't find one and can't spend the rest of my retirement looking.

    I would just as soon use D as a mirror. Will W7 do this? (and why not?) Should I set up a RAID?
    Dan Lynch
    The stonecherub

  2. #2
    4 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Thanked 33 Times in 33 Posts
    You are probably including the full image with the backup? Or you're copying all the data over and over again so you have several copies of each and everything until you run out of room...I would forget all that, not only because it does what it does without modification away from the defaults, but also because Windows 7 puts everything into modules called zip files, where its not as easy to spot check or browse for any singular file you may wish to recover.

    What I recommend is making an image, as you've probably already been doing, but for the day to day backups, use a backup/synchronization program like Syncback Free or SyncToy and mirror only your data to another drive, and to safeguard against catastrophic loss (fire, theft, flooding, etc.), make another copy to a medium or location that is, or can be taken off site, the frequency of which, dependent on acceptable data loss between backups.

    Personally I use Syncback and keep 3 copies of everything, but if you had a relative or friend with Windows 7 you can even setup your own online backup to them using Windows Mesh or CrashPlan.
    In short, there are many more effective strategies than a simple RAID, or letting Windows 7 stuff a drive with extra copies of data in one spot on the same machine. Just need to know a little more about the resources you have or would be willing to pay for (such as Carbonite).

  3. #3
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    California & Arizona
    Thanked 609 Times in 557 Posts
    1 TB drives are fine for storage, but the bootable os drive should be the fastest drive, like a WD 10,000 rpm raptor, or better yet, an SSD.

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