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Bearclaw
05-02-06, 09:46 AM
I have a 300 Gig hard drive and I want to be able to back it up frequently so I don't lose my information. I am planning on buying another 300 gig hard drive to use to back it up and was wondering how I would do so once i have it physically installed. If you guys could walk me through it I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks.

dwhjr77
05-02-06, 05:20 PM
Just backup what you need. Don't do the whole thing, it's a waste of space. For me i backup .mp3, .vob, mpg4 and its variants, .jpeg, school/work documents from MSOffice, demo's, patches, mods, programs and other useful free software.

einstein_314
05-02-06, 11:07 PM
I backup all of my documents (includes all my music, school docs, all downloaded programs and drivers and stuff). To do this I use a program called Genie Backup Manager. It's great. There is a free version available that is geared towards gamers wanting to backup their save games but it works for documents and stuff too. Or you can pay for the Home version which has a few more features.

I use the Pro version (has a few more features than Home) but the technique is the same. You just pick the folders you want to backup and everytime you tell it to backup it will do so. The confusing part is deciding which backup method to use (there are several options - being incremental, difference, mirror, and a few others). Incremental will add files that have been changed since your last backup to your backup file but will keep the older version of those files too, so you tend to end up with a huge file. But you can restore to a version from a while ago.

The method I use is mirror (not available in the free edition) because it makes my backup file identical to the folders I am backing up. It adds and deletes files as necessary to make them the same.

So yeah, you could also use the backup program that comes with WinXP Pro, it's not too bad...I don't like it though. It does basically the same thing as Genie Backup.

Or you can just copy the files manually. This tends to be a lot of trouble though and you can't just copy the files that have changed since the last backup.

As for what to backup, I wouldn't bother backing up system files or program files. Just maybe your emails, address book, internet favorites, that kind of stuff. But not whole applications them selves. It just takes up too much space and you have to reinstall the program anyways if you have to reinstall windows so it's kinda a waste.

Anyways, I hope this helped a little....

Bearclaw
05-03-06, 09:49 AM
So once I get the new hard drive and physically install it, do I just format it the same and it will show up on my computer? Or do I need to do anything else? As some other people said above I would probably just use the free program mentioned.

einstein_314
05-03-06, 07:25 PM
Once you install it, you may have to "initialize" it before it will show up for you to format. I'm not sure what it's called exactly but it is basically initializing it...To do so you do the following:

1. Go to Start>Control Panel>Administrative Tools>Computer Management
2. Then click on Disk Management (its on the left somewhere)
3. Right click on the drive you wish to "initialize" and pick "initialize". I don't think initialize is the right word but it's somthing to that extent and you should be able to figure it out.
4. Once that is done, you can format normally (either by right clicking again on the drive's empty space and picking format or by way of my computer (right click on drive and format))

Hope this helps!

ViN86
05-03-06, 11:24 PM
if you want to create a clone of the drive, you could always try a program like norton ghost. ( or any similar ghosting/cloning software)

nrdstrm
05-03-06, 11:58 PM
If your that worried about data integrity, why not just buy a raid controller and use Raid 1 (mirror)? A bit more money I suppose, but very easy :)

einstein_314
05-04-06, 12:04 AM
If your that worried about data integrity, why not just buy a raid controller and use Raid 1 (mirror)? A bit more money I suppose, but very easy :)
Or he could use the one built into his motherboard...

Bearclaw
05-04-06, 09:49 AM
If your that worried about data integrity, why not just buy a raid controller and use Raid 1 (mirror)? A bit more money I suppose, but very easy :)

I just want an extra hard drive so I can back up data (Work files, school files etc.) in case one fails. It's not that I'm worried, it's just that I want to be sure not to lose any data if one drive fails on me. It's not even all that important on my upgrade list of my computer but it's a nice thing to have just in case anything does ever happen.

muaddib
05-04-06, 02:59 PM
This is what I do - It's kinda like RAID, just cheaper, safer, and in my opinion, more suitable for home users like me:

1) I store and update all of my precious data on one internal drive.
2) Then, during a monthly/weekly procedure, I copy/update the data to another drive, which is external, inside a high-quality enclosure.
3) After the procedure ends, when I don't need the drive anymore, I unplug it, wrap it and keep it inside a remote and safe place. This way, the drive if off when it's not needed, ensuring much longer lifetime and a bigger immunity to such hazards like viruses/short circuits/fire/theft and what not.
4) Make sure you buy reliable and cool (very cool!) drive, like a did, which were designed for home/non-RAID enviorments. Make sure you use them for backups exclusively (as physical drives, not partitions) and keep an additional drive for the OS/apps/games.
5) Above all, you have exact duplication of each, and when one of them fail - you should do the right steps in order to ensure the working one, untill is other will be good again.

Bearclaw
05-04-06, 05:01 PM
This is what I do - It's kinda like RAID, just cheaper, safer, and in my opinion, more suitable for home users like me:

1) I store and update all of my precious data on one internal drive.
2) Then, during a monthly/weekly procedure, I copy/update the data to another drive, which is external, inside a high-quality enclosure.
3) After the procedure ends, when I don't need the drive anymore, I unplug it, wrap it and keep it inside a remote and safe place. This way, the drive if off when it's not needed, ensuring much longer lifetime and a bigger immunity to such hazards like viruses/short circuits/fire/theft and what not.
4) Make sure you buy reliable and cool (very cool!) drive, like a did, which were designed for home/non-RAID enviorments. Make sure you use them for backups exclusively (as physical drives, not partitions) and keep an additional drive for the OS/apps/games.
5) Above all, you have exact duplication of each, and when one of them fail - you should do the right steps in order to ensure the working one, untill is other will be good again.


Ya, I am between an external drive and an internal drive. I was going to go for internal for sure but now that I have read yours it makes a lot of sense just to unplug everytime and store in a good place. Not sure what I'll go with. First off, I need to get th emoney for an extra drive, whichever one I decide to go with.

muaddib
05-05-06, 06:44 AM
Going with a factory assembled external drive is OK, but making a custome one is much better. That way, you'll get:

1) A better drive, knowing the exact model. Choose a high-quality drive, which is widely renowned for it's reliability and cool temps; combine it with an external enclosure and you got a winner.
2) A high-quality external enclosure is even more important. An enclosure which is made out of aluminium and has at least one fan is absolutely VITAL!
Make sure it is also designed well, and well ventilated.

For example, SNT's enclosures are very good.

Son Goku
05-05-06, 12:43 PM
To get the drive to show up, it depends on what type... AKA, if it's an IDE you might have to get the BIOS to detect it, with a USB external I now have, I just had to plug the drive into the USB port. Beyond that, winXP saw it automatically, and I didn't have to do anything to get XP to recognize it...

From here, you do need to format the new drive, easiest would be no partitioning. You might just check in Disk Manager (right click on my computer, go to manage, and then select disk management).

Make sure there's a partition, if not, create a single extended partition (if you don't plan on booting from it). Then format the thing either NTFS or FAT32 (your choice).

From there, go to your main drive, at the root of your data, and right click the folder, and select copy. Then on the new drive, right click some empty space (where it's white, or whatever your background color is), and select paste. Windows will copy the files for you.

On data, I recommend not allowing the programs to save your data any old place. If it's all gone into "My Documents", fine, you can use that. Else create a

\users

or

\data

directory at the root of your actual (non-backup) drive, and then create sub-folders for all your programs. File the data accordingly, according to where it should go. Now, all of your data is in 1 place on the HD, and 1 place only, instead of being scattered all over kingdom come. You can then just backup that 1 folder, and get it all...