• preferred overall backup strategy

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    #2485308

    Years ago I used a sophisticated backup approach, but today I have no real strategy.  I began looking at devices like the Seagate Plus Hub, but I suspect I should first find a strategy.

    My network & home installation included one reasonably high performance desktop pc, one ancient all-in-one (which I will probably update before too long), and one six-year old and one modern laptop.  All run Windows 10 professional except the modern laptop, which is Windows 11 home.  The local network includes a scanner and a printer.  There are two OneDrive 1T slots (two different users) used.

    Is a simple backup with the Seagate drive the best way to go?  Do I need image backups of the various pcs/laptops?  I would be at a loss, especially with the financial files, if something disasterous (like the recent hurricane) occurs.

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    • #2485333

      Take a look at the AskWoody Backup Programs at

      https://www.askwoody.com/forums/topic/backup-programs-2/

      And World Backup Day on March 31st, AOMEI free backup app and more at

      https://www.askwoody.com/forums/topic/world-backup-day-on-march-31st-aomei-free-backup-app-and-more/

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2485359

      As a home user, my method has been to put all my drives in slide in/out bays.  2 bays for the SSDs and 2 for the 3TB ‘bulk storage’ drive.  Only 1 bay of each type is in use, except when making/using backups.

      I use AOMEI Backuper to clone the SSD C: drive to an identical SSD weekly.  At end of month, I make an additional clone for offsite storage in the event my house burns down, blows away, etc.  I have a stack of 8 SSDs I rotate for this purpose.  Weekly, I also copy any new or changed ‘my documents’ files (checkbook, etc) to a USB 3.1 thumb drive on my key ring that has house and car keys on it.

      The 3TB HD gets backed up quarterly and stored off site.  Why so rarely?  These days, I do very little add/delete/modify files on the drive.  As a non-professional photographer, I’ll do all photo processing from a shoot keeping everything on the SSD C: drive with daily photo folder backup to the HD.  My thinking is that the backup is nice to have in case I really screw up and erroneously delete something.  However, my editing ‘process’ makes 4 or more folders of all the photos along every stage of processing.  So I can easily go back to a prior stage on one or more images and repeat the editing.  When I’m done editing, I copy the entire C: photo shoot directory to the HD one last time.  I also carry a copy of the whole shooting match on a separate USB thumb drive in my pocket until end of quarter when I know everything is now off site.  I delete the photo shoot folder from my C: drive at that point as well.

      As a ‘performance nut’, I tweak Windows every now and then as well as try out some software.  I usually make an out of cycle clone before starting that process, but I sometimes forget to do it.  So, every now and then when I manage to screw things up, if I didn’t make a backup beforehand, I put the most recent weekly backup in, copy the changed files in ‘my documents’ as well as selected files in C:\<userid>\appdata if needed as well to the to the 1-6 day old backup drive, swap drive positions (less than 1 minute) and reboot, then clone the backup (C:) to the original C:.  When done, I put the backup away and put the clone target back in it’s original boot drive position.  Yes, I could easily make a restore point rather than a clone, but about a year ago, I damaged the restore operation and haven’t chased it down yet.

      I should state, too, that I refuse to use any cloud storage due to distrust of their security as well as additional resources used on my computer from daily power on to power off.

      I should note, too, that at least 12 years ago, I had an internal tape drive and monthly backed entire drives up to tape(s) with a 6 month rotation cycle.  It was way too slow to perform as well as difficult and even slower to recover selected files as well as to recreate a bad C: drive from tape alone.  I switched to an external ‘backup drive’ but after having to upgrade its size twice, I figured out that having several cheaper, but identical SSDs and HDs was much faster and less ‘clunky’ to use.  Switching to slide bays made life far easier and faster.  I took one of those ‘high priced’ external backup drives apart before I gave it to a computer parts recycler friend.  Inside was a hard drive that was last produced 4-5 years before I bought it!  In other words, Seagate, et al, uses unsold drives to put in external backup boxes!

      Everything noted here works for me and is low cost and foolproof.  Whether it works for you is your choice.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2485456

      As you have quite a few boxes it may be easiest to use a NAS and let the machines backup when they want. I use a Synology single disk unit, which I backup to an external HDD just by plugging the drive in. You can keep the NAS in a more secure location, if you have one and you can pick it up and take it with you in an emergency.

      I make a daily data backup and a weekly image.
      Daily data because I don’t want to have to work out what I lost 2 weeks ago when I last updated something.
      Weekly image because I can update anytime and always have a recent working backup.

      cheers, Paul

      2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #2485465

      Wow to all!  Looks like I have a lot to consider – and set up before I lose something.

       

       

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