Is backup software a gimmick ????

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  1.    29 Sep 2018 #1

    Is backup software a gimmick ????


    What I understand about backup is you copy the files to another storage medium.

    Simply selecting the files and then copy-and-paste and then that should do it......

    Why there is often what so-called backup software? They may even charge.

    Why do we need those software?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    29 Sep 2018 #2

    Your hard drive or SSD fails. You replace it with a new blank hard drive or SSD. How are you going to replace the OS and apps and programs on it?

    I can tell you how I will do it. Boot from my backup software (Macrium Reflect Free), restore the backup image saved of my entire SSD from a USB hard drive, and be back up and running with all my apps and programs already installed in about 15 minutes.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    29 Sep 2018 #3

    Tsw88 said: View Post
    What I understand about backup is you copy the files to another storage medium.

    Simply selecting the files and then copy-and-paste and then that should do it......

    Why there is often what so-called backup software? They may even charge.

    Why do we need those software?
    It depends what you are backing up.

    If it is just data copy and paste may be adequate but many data backup packages have features such as automatic backups, scheduled backups, version control etc.

    If you are backing up a complete system (OS and programs) so you can recover in event of a disk failure/corruption, you need to copy hidden partition as well or pc will not boot after restoring files. These cannot be copied by simple cut and paste.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    29 Sep 2018 #4

    NavyLCDR said: View Post
    Your hard drive or SSD fails. You replace it with a new blank hard drive or SSD. How are you going to replace the OS and apps and programs on it?

    I can tell you how I will do it. Boot from my backup software (Macrium Reflect Free), restore the backup image saved of my entire SSD from a USB hard drive, and be back up and running with all my apps and programs already installed in about 15 minutes.
    Thank you for the information. Is "Macrium Reflect Free" a freeware?

    Did you mean you boot from the USB flash drive that contains the backup image of the system ?

    I am thinking, if the system drive fails, then how can I use the "
    Macrium Reflect Free" software?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    29 Sep 2018 #5

    cereberus said: View Post
    It depends what you are backing up.

    If it is just data copy and paste may be adequate but many data backup packages have features such as automatic backups, scheduled backups, version control etc.

    If you are backing up a complete system (OS and programs) so you can recover in event of a disk failure/corruption, you need to copy hidden partition as well or pc will not boot after restoring files. These cannot be copied by simple cut and paste.
    My system drive is a 128GB SSD. Do I need a 128GB USB stick?
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  6. Posts : 1,430
    W10 pro x64 and W8.1 x86
       29 Sep 2018 #6

    Definitely not a gimmick. A reliable backup program is the single most useful program you can install.


    Copying user files (documents, music, pictures, and so on) is definitely recommended and a simple copy and paste does just that, it creates a copy should you ever need them.

    A full system backup is a single file copy of your entire Windows partition (or partitions... your choice what you include) and this single file can then be used to recreate how your computer was at the instant the image was made. Every single thing is created just as it was. This means that no matter what disaster strikes, you can restore your computer to exactly how it was. It doesn't have to be a disaster either, you may just want to have a good play around and try installing software to try out and test. Anything. When you have done you can just restore back to before you began, as if nothing happened.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    29 Sep 2018 #7

    I agree with Mooly. I use Uranium Backup which is a free backup program and I've set up to back up my user files twice weekly to my NAS drive.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  8.    29 Sep 2018 #8

    Tsw88 said: View Post
    Thank you for the information. Is "Macrium Reflect Free" a freeware?

    Did you mean you boot from the USB flash drive that contains the backup image of the system ?

    I am thinking, if the system drive fails, then how can I use the "
    Macrium Reflect Free" software?
    I have found that a USB flash drive, by itself, is pretty impractical for keeping the backup image on. This is mostly due to some partitioning limits in Windows that you need to overcome to make the USB flash drive both bootable and be able to use more than 32GB of it. I would suggest an 8GB (or even 2GB or 4GB for just Macrium Reflect) USB flash to use as your bootable rescue media. Macrium Reflect Free will create the bootable rescue drive for you. Then use a 250GB or larger USB hard drive for the backup image. You could probably easily use a 128GB external hard drive, or even a separate 128GB USB flash drive to store the image on.

    Basically, install Macrium Reflect Free, yes it is free. Create your bootable USB flash drive rescue drive (on a 2, 4, or 8 GB USB flash drive). The rescue USB flash drive will get formatted as FAT32. Then save a backup image to an NTFS formatted USB hard drive or 128 GB USB flash drive. The flash drive will be much slower, and I find the flash drives to be a bit unreliable compared to the external hard drive for storing the image on.

    Then if your computer crashes, boot from the USB rescue drive. Once it is up and in Macrium Reflect, you can remove the rescue drive and replace it with the hard drive containing the backup image. Restore the back up image and you are back in business. Also, if you need just a data file from your backup, you can mount the image file in your normal Windows installation and pull individual files from the backup image.

    If you want to, there is also a way to put a small, bootable FAT32 partition on an external hard drive as well as an NTFS partition, and you can then boot from and restore from the same external hard drive and not need the bootable USB flash drive for rescue. That's actually what my setup is.

    Most members of this forum use and recommend Macrium Reflect Free:
    Macrium Software | Macrium Reflect Free
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  9.    30 Sep 2018 #9

    No, system backup is essential and you should start using a program like the excellent Macrium Reflect Free.This saved me a few weeks ago when my laptop started playing up. All was restored in 10 minutes with no problems.One of your backups should be stored on an external drive you keep disconnected from the PC in case of serious virus attack affecting all connected drives.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  10.    30 Sep 2018 #10

    Hi there
    while copying files to another medium via file explorer is definitely better than not backing up at all, you have to consider if your machine fails - do you want to go through the whole nonsense of re-installing windows , plus all its updates, plus any software you might have, plus updates, plus activation / license serial numbers etc. You might even have legacy software (i.e manufacturer is no longer in business or won't supply the old software any more --particularly drivers etc).

    I can't understand how anybody can even THINK that backup software is a gimmick.

    The amount of time having sensible backups plus the software I've saved over the years -- well must be 100's of hours !!!.

    Also the more complex your installation is - the longer it takes to re-install everything from scratch - for most people this is also not a trivial task - can be very time consuming which can be avoided with decent backup - often restores can be completed in around 15 - 30 mins in most cases.

    Cheers
    jimbo
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 
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