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I am looking for a home backup solution for my single Windows 7 (Home Premium) PC. I have about 500GB of data to backup. I would like to spend less than GBP 300 on the solution.

I don't see the need to backup the whole PC, rather specific folder branches (iTunes, photos, documents, Outlook files, user folders such as desktop, favorites etc).

I would like a solution that enables me to maintain backups in two separate physical locations (e.g. home and work).

To facilitate this I am imagining a storage unit with slots for two removable drives, along with three separate drives.

At any one time two of the drives will be being backed up to in the storage unit. The third will be located at my work.

Periodically I will take one of the drives into work and leave it there, then bring the drive that was there back home, and plug it into the storage unit. It will then be backed up along with the other drive that was left in the storage unit.

This approach should cover scenarios such as virus attack and fire or theft from one location.

Thoughts and comments on the sanity of this approach please...

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migrated from serverfault.com Mar 30 '10 at 20:24

This question came from our site for professional system and network administrators.

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This question is better suited for Superuser.com, as it specifically relates a solution for your personal computer. Please do not re-post on that site, as this question will likely be relocated shortly on your behalf. –  Warner Mar 30 '10 at 20:17

3 Answers 3

up vote 3 down vote accepted

What I do is use an external USB drive. I wrote a batch file that uses robocopy to mirror selected subdirectories. Note that it doesn't do incremental backups, it just mirrors the subdirectories. I have two partitions on the drive NTFS (for my windows machines) and ext2 (for my Linux server). After backing up my systems, I store the drive in a fireproof safe.

You could just get two external drives. One to keep at home, and one to take to work.

If you're interested, let me know, and I'll post the batch file I use to mirror my directories.

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I used to use a removable drive for my backups, but when my power supply died, it fried the backup drive too. So I switched to external USB drives. If your motherboard supports eSATA, you can get a drive enclosure that supports eSATA for faster throughput. –  Scott Mar 31 '10 at 14:37

how about SyncToy by Microsoft?

"SyncToy will painlessly sync files and folders across PCs on a network or even sync between partitions on the same hard drive (attention dual booters!). You can sync music, photos, docs too and SyncToy will copy the new files to a USB or SD card. It can sync any file/folder including your Outlook .pst file to an external drive as well. It’s free, it’s easy and it works. All Windows OSs, x86-x64" (tinyhacker.com)

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You can use cobian backup. It can backup to an ftp server (while compressing and encrypting the backup file) as well as doing incremental backups after the first full backup. It lets you pick which files/folders you want to backup... the works. I've used it with success and it's really easy.

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