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Opinions solicited on this proposed backup solution.

Opinions solicited on this proposed backup solution.

Opinions solicited on this proposed backup solution.

I am looking for the cheapest and fastest way to backup my PC in the event of hard drive or other failure. I have about 300GB I want backed up, but I presume a differential backup (after the initial backup) would only be a few MB per day.

I currently backup to DVD-ROM but this is a pain and more of an archive than a backup solution. I need to be able to recover back to yesterday - as it were - as soon as possible. Also it is never really up to date in any meaningful sense.

So, I am considering using TrueImage to do the backup and an external USB drive to backup to.

The cheapest solution I can find seems to be:-

IcyBox IB351U-BL External HDD Case USB2 for 3.5" Hard Drive PATA
£17.04    inc VAT and a

400GB Samsung HD400LD hard drive

for £86.35 Inc VAT

This works out at about 26p/GB

I am thinking that I could run scheduled backups overnight and if I bought two disks I could swap them from time to time and leave a disk at a neighbours as 'off site'

Does this look to be a reasonable solution? Or have I forgotten something or even chosen the wrong type of hard drive for this device?

Comments and advice much appreciated.

RE: Opinions solicited on this proposed backup solution.

For a basic backup solution, it sounds ok.  

I'd suggest, if you haven't already, you might want to read over my backup comment - it started as a comment and grew and grew and grew, so I turned it into a web page:

RE: Opinions solicited on this proposed backup solution.

Thanks - I will try to digest your web page - seems to be very comprehensive. I'm not sure what you mean exactly by 'basic'. To clarify - I am proposing to do an initial full backup to each of the two 400GB drives. Then continue to use one to do differential backups until the disk is full. At that point I will swap the drives, wipe the drive and start again with a full backup. It's not 100% safe I know - but good enough I reckon to ensure I can recover to 'yesterday' most of the time and at least to some previous point if I suffer a simultaneous failure of a hard drive in the PC and one of the USB hard drives. If any disaster is sufficiently big to take out my house and a neighbours I guess I won't care about my data anyway. Or at least, it will be the least of my worries.

BTW - the URL for the case is

My mistake.

RE: Opinions solicited on this proposed backup solution.

Hi Stduc,

Did you get a solution?

I just put up some osfs on sourceforge that looks like it would apply.

Pls. post if you are still looking.


RE: Opinions solicited on this proposed backup solution.

I implemented the solution I originally mooted. I plumped for Acronis True Image as the backup software. It seems to work well enough for me. I managed to recover a file I accidentally deleted in about a minute. I restored an image backup of my C drive to a virtual machine & it booted.

A full backup takes 2 hours, but a differential is done in under 10 minutes.

I have yet to fill the 400GB USB connected drive. So I haven't swapped in a new drive yet.

The ICY box is good and "does what it says on the tin"

One minor issue - may annoy some - it lights up like a christmas tree - very festive but I wouldn't want one in my office!

RE: Opinions solicited on this proposed backup solution.

Thanks, stduc,

If you ever experiment with http://cdriveback.sourceforge.net let me know how long 300G takes.  

On an old IDE, 1.8gHz box I'm getting 180 M /min. probably double that on a modern system, so that's only a G per three min, a lot slower than Acronis (unless a lot of files are already compressed then they are simply moved: GIF, JPG, ISO, MOV, etc. and then things speed up remarkably smile

Oh well, the target is end users who have trouble with backing up their XP.  Many don't have 0.3 Tbytes.

 - j

RE: Opinions solicited on this proposed backup solution.

I'd just use True Image.
Reliable, fast, easy-in-use and rather cheap.

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