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I 've been using computers for 20 years and I have gone through several styles of backing up my files. In the past I used to burn files on CDs and DVDs, which soon turned into a huge mass. I couldn't archive them and usually when I needed a file I should search through hundreds of them.

Then HDDs got cheaper and I bought some 500Gbytes devices. I backed up my files on two hard disks at the same time in case something fails and this was a more professional procedure to follow. Unfortunately, last year I was a victim of home burglary which was a big disappointment for me but fortunately they didn't took away my hard disks.

I realised that they could steal my hard disks or/and DVDs and then years of work and memories (photos, videos) could fall on criminal hands, exposing my personal life to everyone and erasing my memories and my work. So I had to find something more secure, efficient and affordable. And I found crashplan which backed up my files encrypted in some place secure and kept intact from burglar attacks, fire, destruction or whatever.

I want to secure my files insanely, especially my childhood memories and work. I am looking into insane but serious ideas to do so. I am also being sceptical about companies that shut down one after the other (like springpad for example) so I don't want to rely on the cloud only. I am also looking for cheap solutions, meaning that I do not have the capital to maintain three RAID servers around the world and one in my home.

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closed as primarily opinion-based by Sathya Jun 17 at 8:27

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

I have a Seagate Central at home and a server with a 4TB shared drive at my office. I use Acronis TrueImage to back up my machine on a schedule to both locations. I feel pretty good about it. Offsite is key for that. Another option, although not cheap, is SentrySafe makes hard drive safes. They even make fireproof and waterproof ones. No redundancy with just one drive but good if offsite isn't an option. There are also many online backup services, you can Google for those. Also, stay organized! Redundancy is good but take care not to turn it into a confusing mess like I do! –  Jason C Jun 17 at 7:13
And yes, it most certainly is terrifying how much of our lives these days are patterns of magnetized particles, electron states, and microscopic pits in plastic, sometimes on devices smaller than my thumbnail. It feels fragile, but backups, especially off site, go a very long way. –  Jason C Jun 17 at 7:21
Damned; typed a whole "answer" and then the question got closed :-( Then I'll just post the most important part: use Glacier. This is for long-term storage, dirt-cheap ($0.01 per GB per month) and has an "average annual durability of 99.999999999% for an archive". Examine the pricing closely though; but as long as you're not restoring many GB's a month you'll be fine. The rest of my answer included a NAS, external USB drives and Syncback but there's no room for all of that in a comment. –  RobIII Jun 17 at 8:30
There's was great discussion about it [here at SU][1]. [1]: superuser.com/questions/374386/… –  EliadTech Jun 17 at 8:34

2 Answers 2

up vote 6 down vote accepted

There is a "3-2-1" rule which you can follow for backup best practices. It can be summarized as: if you’re backing something up, you should have:

  • At least three copies,
  • In two different formats,
  • with one of those copies off-site.

More info: http://blog.trendmicro.com/trendlabs-security-intelligence/world-backup-day-the-3-2-1-rule/

Now regarding the solutions, I could highly suggest TarSnap as a cloud backup solution. It is cheap and safe and it doesn't look like it's going anywhere.

Keep using local storage (I would suggest using HDDs) for that but also upload your backups to the cloud at the same time.

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+1 for tarsnap. Also I really like my Seagate Central for home backups, a little pricey but so easy to set up and very compact ($200 for a 4TB drive with an SMB server and an Ethernet port in a tiny enclosure, still much cheaper than a dedicated pc for a server). –  Jason C Jun 17 at 7:16

Why not buy a Raspberry Pi for $35, a good 5V PSU for it and a supported Wi-Fi adapter (about $10 maybe) and create a backup server. Hide it in a box that wouldn't be looked at (shoe box for example?) and place that box somewhere nobody would look (basement/loft).

You could then backup to a simple CIFS share (Windows share) on the Pi or go for a more elaborate setu

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Great idea !! I have a Beaglebone Black spare ! Thanks for that... –  RobDel Jun 17 at 7:53
@RobDel If you can run ethernet to it (discretely I suppose, perhaps through a wall) go with a gigabit wired port instead of wifi. You'll thank yourself in terms of backup times. Grab a cheap gigabit switch to tie it all together if your home router doesn't have gigabit ports. I like the Netgear GS105; they're tiny, retail for about $30-35, and they've never let me down (I have 2 of them in my house, one at the office, and one I carry around to site visits in case I need it). –  Jason C Jun 17 at 16:50
And you can use DeltaCopy to synchronize backups; which is free and is essentially rsync for Windows. –  Jason C Jun 17 at 16:54

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