What are good backup programs?

DrNeuro February 1, 2010

Is there an inexpensive program that will back-up all my data as well as my apps and OS. Please forgive my naivete.

  1. Schuenemberg
    February 16, 2011 at 1:01 am

    For Mac i use Synchronize! Pro X.
    It is is a professional-strength system backup and file synchronization utility for Mac OS X. Pro X to backup your OS X startup disk to another hard disk, so that the backup disk is bootable.


  2. Anonymous
    July 14, 2010 at 8:54 am

    If you are on a Windows system, you should definitely try out Comodo Time Machine. It's like System Restore on steroids. The best part is that you can restore to a previous state even if you can't boot into your OS. This can be done by pressing Home while booting up.
    I think there's a version for Linux as well.

  3. Graham
    June 28, 2010 at 9:58 am

    acronis is a good one ,search and ye shall find, there is also a free one out there sorry i cant remeber it, try google 'free backup progammes'

  4. fruitgeek
    May 22, 2010 at 6:54 pm

    Time machine is great for mac- also for windows, if you buy an external hard drive, many come with backup software preloaded.

  5. Anonymous
    March 4, 2010 at 9:50 am

    I've found Macrium Reflect a good all round backup program - it cost $40, though. It also helped me convert safely from XP and Vista to Windows 7. True, I haven't tried restoring with it yet, but it seems to have a good reputation according to PC World.

  6. Taty
    February 26, 2010 at 5:57 am

    If you would like to automate your back ups, you can also use online services like Mozy. Unlimited storage space for less than $5 a month or 2 gigs for free.

    • Joan
      February 26, 2010 at 7:38 am

      Thanks, Taty. But I'm worried that online backup companies also spy on their consumers or, worse, steal personal information.

      I went with Syncback, though I've not yet used it. Appreciate your suggestion.

      • Taty
        February 26, 2010 at 8:39 pm

        Hi Joan
        Mozy actually has very extensive documentation on their privacy policies, but ultimately you must do what you feel comfortable with at all times, as far as your data is concerned, so I'm glad you seem to have found a solution that works for you. Back ups exist to give you peace of mind, after all. My one advice is that you store a back up out of site somewhere.

        • Joan
          February 27, 2010 at 2:46 am

          Taty, I like the way you think. I decided sometime ago that I'd do just that -- keep a back up where only I will know where it is!

  7. Skull
    February 4, 2010 at 2:45 pm

    I only use the excellent (I Think still freeware) program from "2BrightSparks.com" called SyncBackSE. It's excellent, pretty easy, waaay configurable and not for use by SuperGeeks. Best of all,........it just works !!

    • Joan
      February 8, 2010 at 9:59 am

      Thanks for helping! Free is good. So's the fact that it works!

    • Johnmbradford
      October 14, 2010 at 10:19 am

      The problem with SyncBack free, like many backup programs that I've tried, comes from the simple question that I am asked every time - "what files do you want to back up?". Answer "I don't know!" Of course, I know about my data files, but I don't know what other files Windows creates that I need to back up, I don't know where my Thunderbird saved emails are, for example. How am I supposed to know what needs to be backed up?

      • Aibek
        October 14, 2010 at 10:35 am

        If you need a progam that can scan your PC and actually tell you what settings should be backups try ToDo Backup (or maybe FBackup)

  8. Joan
    February 2, 2010 at 6:14 am

    Don't laugh, anyone. I'm a novice and besides that I'm OLD (64)! Why isn't my back up utility that came with XP Professional adequate to backup everything on my hard drive to the somewhat expensive Seagate kazillion-gig HDD? Why do I need another back-up program?

    Again, no laughing or sniping, please!

    • Oron Joffe
      February 23, 2010 at 11:05 pm

      Most backup programs cannot do a complete backup of of the applications and OS, but certain files (in practice, data files and SOME applications). To do a complete backup you need to 'clone' or 'image' the hard disc, with one of the packages mentioned by Tina below.

      • Anonymous
        February 28, 2010 at 1:55 am


        Another nasty surprise from the standard Microsoft backup is that it DOES NOT backup ALL extensions with the non-image tools. I lost a bunch of .js files that way. The doc mentions a bit of this but is still too vague. I now zip some of my source to avoid this.

        Otherwise the Microsoft tool is not too bad, but is a bit clunky/confusing in the screens at first.

  9. Olav
    February 2, 2010 at 5:32 am

    You can also select all the files that absolutely need to be backed up and 1) burn a CD (try Roxio for that, but probably the "burner" on your system will work fine) and/or 2) stick them on a flash drive and in any case 3) add an external hard drive and back up everything you need to on it just in case your computer's hard drive dies - and it will, some day.

  10. Anonymous
    February 2, 2010 at 4:13 am
  11. Anonymous
    February 1, 2010 at 11:54 pm

    Allwaysync, if not mentioned above, is a real time way to backup files from one location to another...regardless of where the destination is. Oh, and it's free.

  12. Olav
    February 1, 2010 at 11:27 pm

    If you have a Mac, then use Time Machine, Apple's own backup program, which is excellent. It has been somewhat of a lifesaver for me. So have my Mac computers (5). I gave up on PCs and Microsoft 6 years ago and wonder what took me so long.

    • Joan
      February 26, 2010 at 7:42 am

      Hmm... Thanks, Tina (and Oron). I'll take a look at these. Still haven't used Syncback yet. The more info I have, the better.

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