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PC backup

synthnut1

Active Member
Call me stupid, but I haven’t backed up either of the 2 hd’s in my computer....After having some scary issues with this computer, I have learned a lot about it after a tremendous amount of reading...I’m not sure how I want to back up these hd’s.....I have my applications and OS on my C: drive, and my samples on my other drive....What’s the best way, and the best program for a proper backup ?...I’m assuming that I should partition the C drive to separate the OS from the applications.....Thanks......Jim
 

James H

01001000 01101001
There's probably 1000 answers to this, but for my Windows machine (I'm mostly on Mac for audio) I use Acronis. Can restore from boot option f12 within minutes.
Personally, I don't bother with partitions and just clone the whole C: drive. Unless you have good reason to do so, it's of no use during a failure as the whole drive has gone anyway.
I have a few massive HDD's that backup my samples (only the big one's to save downloads) on a weekly basis. Others I'll just download again like smaller NI stuff.

Whatever software you use, make a backup plan. And test it! Have regular backup schedules and forget.
Edit, I also have my projects folder backed up at different intervals as a separate backup job.
 
Start with Macrium free. I own the paid version- it can make quick incremental backups instead of just full ones, and more. But I’m a backup nut. My computers and laptops all backup daily to my NAS (and parts of that NAS storage backup to a second NAS). You don't have to partition the C: drive.

I also use another app to backup documents and project files to google drive every hour. Not full drives of content - just key stuff. And 120GB of photos are also all backed up on Amazon for “free” (part of Prime).

I used to rely on acronis, but it failed a couple of times when I needed it so I went with the more reliable but harder to use option. Macrium Pro hasn't failed me in the years of use. If I could have Macrium Pro with the simplicity of Apple's Time Machine, I'd be in backup heaven, as that'd be power + ease of use. The good thing is, once you set up a backup in something like Acronis or Macrium, it's just as easy to use as Time Machine, because it just happens in the background the same way. Restoring is a little trickier, though, depending. Time Machine has frustrated me in other ways on my MacBook Pro.

EDIT: You'll definitely want to backup to one or more external destinations. At the very least, and external hard drive (don't leave it connected after backup... but then you have to remember to connect it so it can backup). You can do your own "cloud" backup without using a service if you have 2 large external hard drives - backup at least monthly, weekly is better, and alternate between the drives, leaving one drive somewhere secure away from where your computer is located. That way, if something happens to your computer etc., you still have a backup somewhere. I suggest leaving the backup drive disconnected when not in use because that way if there's a power surge through your computer it can't fry the backup.
 
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BassClef

New Member
Mac here... All of my data is on external SSDs which are "continually" backed up to an external spinning hard drive. They are also "continually" backed up to the cloud using BackBlaze.
 
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synthnut1

Active Member
So these programs that you guys speak of backup the OS and the rest of the files that are on my C: drive ?

As I load new programs, will I be able to add them to the backup , like every month or so, or can I set it up to backup daily ?
 
At a high level there’s 2 kinds of backups: individual files and disk.

Backing up files is great in case something happens to them or you just accidentally overwrite one and can’t undo it - you can restore it quickly and easily.

Disk backup is in case your disk dies or your computer burns down. It takes longer to back up the whole disk including the file system and it takes longer to restore if you need it. But just backing up your files won’t help you if a windows update corrupts the file system and you can’t boot into windows. You’d be left with reinstalling and then restoring files from a file backup. With a disk backup, you restore everything to that moment in time when the backup was made.

Finding an app that’ll backup files to the cloud service of your choice is recommended. As is a disk backup app (these can also do file backup but not all can use the cloud) that can restore everything in a worst case scenario
 

BassClef

New Member
So these programs that you guys speak of backup the OS and the rest of the files that are on my C: drive ?

As I load new programs, will I be able to add them to the backup , like every month or so, or can I set it up to backup daily ?
again on my iMac... the "on my desk" back up is complete... backing up the OS all app and all data for a complete restore if necessary,. It runs constantly and any software or data that I add is automatically backed up. So I could do a complete restore of everything with the touch of a button! My cloud backup (via BackBlaze) only backs up my data. To use it after a major fail, I'd have to reinstall the OS, and all apps from other sources, then download my data from BackBlaze. With Backblaze and other similar backup services, you tell it which directories you want it to backup. Then when you add more files to that directory they are backed up immediately, and continually scanned for changes.
 

erica-grace

Senior Member
Another vote for Acronis I use it here with great success.

Some guys on the Sevenforums recommend Macrium, as Vito did.

So these programs that you guys speak of backup the OS and the rest of the files that are on my C: drive ?
Acronis takes an image of your hard disk, replicating the structure and all of the contents. So the answer to your question is yes. :) Once you reload your image (which will be on an external hard disk), you needn't do anything but boot into Windows.

For the samples on the other drive, get an external hard disk, and back up your files there by dragging them over to the drive.

Something like this will work fine.

 

rgames

Collapsing the Wavefunction
Not sure if you're looking Mac only but on PC I've used Genie Backup Manager for many years and it's a reliable tool. I do incremental backups every day so that has the added benefit of letting you re-load a project as it was saved on a particular day. I've used that feature to save my butt a number of times over the years - ever deleted a track or part without realizing it until a few days later?

I do a new master backup once every couple months or so and move the previous backup to an offsite location.

I only do backups on my projects and photos/videos/etc. I don't back up my apps. I have an external drive with duplicates of all my samples but they also reside on several different computers because I don't work in just one spot. I use the external drive to transfer new libraries when moving to a different machine and just leave everything on there as a master reference.

rgames
 

James H

01001000 01101001
As I load new programs, will I be able to add them to the backup , like every month or so, or can I set it up to backup daily ?
The backup job will add them automatically. It checks for a flag on the files, new ones won't have this flag. So any new files will be added to the job auto (also any that have changed since the last backup). Basically, setup a full backup to run weekly and you're done.
You can go all out and have a full backup weekly, daily incremental, and save the weeklys for 4 weeks aka retention. This is all under the 1 backup job.
Most backup software run through a wizard, so just choose the defaults and forget about it :)

Acronis takes an image, that's used to restore the machine. But you can also browse the image like any normal folder, so you can just double click it... grab a deleted file/mp3/photo... close it.
 
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synthnut1

Active Member
You guys have all been very helpful....It’s good to know that there is a bunch of knowledgeable people on this forum.....My current computer is getting old, and starting to fail, so my next adventure will be to build a new i9 ....I thank you all very much for your help.... Jim
 
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