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PC Backup


IceStone
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I have been messing around with computers forever, but one thing I have never been good at is backing up stuff. I use a little jump drive to keep my important files on but that's about it. I recently did a fresh install on my computer and was looking for a way to back up the entire pc. So if I want to reinstall the OS, I can basically install windows and then put in my backup media and be done with it. Does windows have a native program for this or do I have to purchase something?

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I have been messing around with computers forever, but one thing I have never been good at is backing up stuff. I use a little jump drive to keep my important files on but that's about it. I recently did a fresh install on my computer and was looking for a way to back up the entire pc. So if I want to reinstall the OS, I can basically install windows and then put in my backup media and be done with it. Does windows have a native program for this or do I have to purchase something?

Do a fresh load, create an extra 10 gig or so (according to how much information you have) partition or more ideally: buy another external drive, get everything perfect, just the way you want it (all updates, files coordinated, etc.). Then use Ghost or Acronis and simply make an image of your computer onto the extra partition or spare drive. You will still need to do an incremental backup weekly or monthly (your choice)for changes since the image was created.Should your HD ever fail, you can have your computer back up in literally 5 minutes with all your most important (as of now) files, photos, video's, etc contained within.

One of many options, but in my opinion one of the easiest, quickest, and according to where and how you store the extra drive, most secure ways to go for a personal home computer.

Also Windows Live Skydrive offers 25 gigs of free storage for your most prized files and photos, 50 mg limit per file if I recall correctly. Great option and interface though, especially for Microsoft.

Windows Live Skydrive

If you don't mind spending a few hundred dollars, Drobo is a very good Raid like solution that could not be easier to set up and manage. Very impressive, simple, and safe.

http://www.drobo.com/

Edited by silentbob1272
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I have been messing around with computers forever, but one thing I have never been good at is backing up stuff. I use a little jump drive to keep my important files on but that's about it. I recently did a fresh install on my computer and was looking for a way to back up the entire pc. So if I want to reinstall the OS, I can basically install windows and then put in my backup media and be done with it. Does windows have a native program for this or do I have to purchase something?

Just go Buy a 320 Gig or higher External hard drive and alot have their own software for backing it up on there, they only cost about 50-60 bucks depending on the type and size. The only real files you need to back up are, My Favorites,my music, my pictures, my videos, Your Desktop and your documents and your PST file if you use Outlook. Unless you want to do a Ghost type backup. I work on peoples computers and work on Servers for a living, don't make it harder then it is. ;)

And the biggest thing, when your done shove the hard drive in a place you can grab it, if your house is on fire, seriously. And periodically back it up. Like every 3-4 months. Because if you use the hard drive all the time they can break down. Then you got to get another hard drive. ;)

Edited by nativefalcon
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Thanks for the advice guys. I got a good deal at Costco Link 500 Gigs in an external drive for $59. I did some research and used Windows Backup and Restore to create a System Image of all my drives so I can completely restore my computer and I also have it set up to backup my important files once a week. It's actually pretty simple to do, I thought it would be much worse.

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