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I have tried several backup solutions for my data and none of them was good enough.

I basically want to make a copy of my files to an attached USB Drive from time to time. I don't mind starting my backups manually, since the USB Drive is not always connected.

My problem is that my data contains a lot of files (a huge amount), so backing up takes forever (more than 20 hours).

Using "rsync" an other similar solutions is not working because the I/O needed to check the file for changes takes longer than the time to actually copy it.

Any suggestions?

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    Is your USB drive connected to a USB 2.0 port? I sometimes had this problem, though Windows would warn me. Also copying a large amount of small files takes a lot of time - more than the same amount (in total bytes) with less files of bigger individual sizes. – MetalMikester Apr 12 '10 at 12:44
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Presumably the backup routine is reading the complete contents of each file on the USB Drive in order to determine if the file has changed.

The way I would do this is to use something that can quickly exclude files which have the same size and timestamp on both source and destination. I am sure there are many programs that do this, the one I tend to use is Beyond Compare. It is not free but there is a trial version so you can test to see if it works.

Properly configured, it can quickly tell which files need to be backed-up using just a directory scan and those files are just copied across without reading the existing contents off the USB drive.

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Is this on windows? If so, set the device for speed in device manager. However then you must do the remove hardware before removing it or you really will get problems.

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