Opinion question about external back up drives

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

I think I am familiar enough with my new system now, to take some advice
given me here several months ago about back up devices. Now I just need
some more specific advice about what to purchase.

I have a 80GB system, and in 10 yrs. my home use has never exceeded
10GB. [It's 7GB now + 5GB for system.] I may use slightly more storage
for mp3's and WebShots, but I'm not a photo buff, or total music junkie.

So these are my questions:

1 - Is an 80 GB drive excessive or adequate for my purely personal use?
For example, would 40GB do? Any reason to have excess capacity?

2 - Will these drives copy *absolutely everything* on my system, and
restore it SIMPLY for a semi-literate computer user? In others words,
if my system crashes, am I going to be able to restore my system?

3 - The drives I am looking at are Maxtor, Iomega and LaCie w/80 GB, and
I get confused when reading some ngs where some people say these drives
don't do what a Ghost image will? Am I misunderstanding something. [I
don't want to use Norton products.]

4 - What brand is your personal preference and why, if you use an
external back up advice?

Thanks to any and all, who have the time to help this *less than
technical*, but ardent pc user, decide on the _simplest_ and most
dependable back up drive.
bj

P.S. - This is what I keep coming back to [at New Egg]:
http://www.maxstore.com/product.asp?sku=2455296
4 answers Last reply
More about opinion question external back drives
  1. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    "chicagofan" <me7@privacy.net> wrote in message
    news:41F907D7.30705@privacy.net...
    >I think I am familiar enough with my new system now, to take some advice
    >given me here several months ago about back up devices. Now I just need
    >some more specific advice about what to purchase.
    >
    > I have a 80GB system, and in 10 yrs. my home use has never exceeded 10GB.
    > [It's 7GB now + 5GB for system.] I may use slightly more storage for
    > mp3's and WebShots, but I'm not a photo buff, or total music junkie.
    >
    > So these are my questions:
    >
    > 1 - Is an 80 GB drive excessive or adequate for my purely personal use?
    > For example, would 40GB do? Any reason to have excess capacity?
    >
    80 GB is probably the smallest that you can buy.

    > 2 - Will these drives copy *absolutely everything* on my system, and
    > restore it SIMPLY for a semi-literate computer user? In others words, if
    > my system crashes, am I going to be able to restore my system?

    No. Windows XP Pro will backup most. Windows XP Home does not have the
    backup installed (will not back up system settings) on arrival see this for
    instructions to install.
    http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/using/setup/learnmore/tips/kellyxp02.mspx
    However, your programs (indluding XP) are on CDs. Use them as "Back Up".
    >
    > 3 - The drives I am looking at are Maxtor, Iomega and LaCie w/80 GB, and I
    > get confused when reading some ngs where some people say these drives
    > don't do what a Ghost image will? Am I misunderstanding something. [I
    > don't want to use Norton products.]
    >
    I would install a second internal drive, the cost is less and backup speeds
    are much faster. The use the Windows XP back up to back up the My Documents
    folder. Make sure all of your downloaded programs are in a folder within My
    Documents. IMO.

    > 4 - What brand is your personal preference and why, if you use an external
    > back up advice?

    Most internal hard drives are now commodities. I have no personal
    prefereces. When I have needed one, I simply went to the store and bought
    the cheapest.
    >
    > Thanks to any and all, who have the time to help this *less than
    > technical*, but ardent pc user, decide on the _simplest_ and most
    > dependable back up drive.
    > bj
    >
    > P.S. - This is what I keep coming back to [at New Egg]:
    > http://www.maxstore.com/product.asp?sku=2455296
  2. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    1. Don't worry about having too much space. I recommend that the backup
    drive should be at least three times as large as your largest backup job. I
    do automated weekly incremental backups. Over time the space used to back
    up 10GB can grow to 30GB because what is being saved are the changes from
    session to session. These accumulate and at some point I do a "recycle
    media" backup and thus start over with a new backup file.

    2. You can select a backup option that includes the system files.

    3. The backup program, not the drive, determines what kind of restores you
    can do. If you are buying an external hd to use for backups, then you can
    select one that has a backup program bundled with it.
    If you buy a backup program, BackupMyPC (Stomp) and Retrospect (Dantz) are
    good ones. Hint: Always have the cd version of your backup program on hand
    and don't depend on a downloaded version. If you have to restore you may
    also have to reinstall the backup program first.

    4. I prefer an external usb2 drive. I have tried a firewire drive and it
    was not as reliable about being online when the automated backup wanted to
    start.

    --
    Colin Barnhorst [MVP Windows - Virtual Machine]
    "chicagofan" <me7@privacy.net> wrote in message
    news:41F907D7.30705@privacy.net...
    >I think I am familiar enough with my new system now, to take some advice
    >given me here several months ago about back up devices. Now I just need
    >some more specific advice about what to purchase.
    >
    > I have a 80GB system, and in 10 yrs. my home use has never exceeded 10GB.
    > [It's 7GB now + 5GB for system.] I may use slightly more storage for
    > mp3's and WebShots, but I'm not a photo buff, or total music junkie.
    >
    > So these are my questions:
    >
    > 1 - Is an 80 GB drive excessive or adequate for my purely personal use?
    > For example, would 40GB do? Any reason to have excess capacity?
    >
    > 2 - Will these drives copy *absolutely everything* on my system, and
    > restore it SIMPLY for a semi-literate computer user? In others words, if
    > my system crashes, am I going to be able to restore my system?
    >
    > 3 - The drives I am looking at are Maxtor, Iomega and LaCie w/80 GB, and I
    > get confused when reading some ngs where some people say these drives
    > don't do what a Ghost image will? Am I misunderstanding something. [I
    > don't want to use Norton products.]
    >
    > 4 - What brand is your personal preference and why, if you use an external
    > back up advice?
    >
    > Thanks to any and all, who have the time to help this *less than
    > technical*, but ardent pc user, decide on the _simplest_ and most
    > dependable back up drive.
    > bj
    >
    > P.S. - This is what I keep coming back to [at New Egg]:
    > http://www.maxstore.com/product.asp?sku=2455296
  3. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    Colin Barnhorst wrote:

    > 1. Don't worry about having too much space. I recommend that the backup
    > drive should be at least three times as large as your largest backup job. I
    > do automated weekly incremental backups. Over time the space used to back
    > up 10GB can grow to 30GB because what is being saved are the changes from
    > session to session. These accumulate and at some point I do a "recycle
    > media" backup and thus start over with a new backup file.
    >
    > 2. You can select a backup option that includes the system files.
    >
    > 3. The backup program, not the drive, determines what kind of restores you
    > can do. If you are buying an external hd to use for backups, then you can
    > select one that has a backup program bundled with it.
    > If you buy a backup program, BackupMyPC (Stomp) and Retrospect (Dantz) are
    > good ones. Hint: Always have the cd version of your backup program on hand
    > and don't depend on a downloaded version. If you have to restore you may
    > also have to reinstall the backup program first.
    >
    > 4. I prefer an external usb2 drive. I have tried a firewire drive and it
    > was not as reliable about being online when the automated backup wanted to
    > start.

    No. 4, is what I am looking at, and the Maxtor One Touch, has the Dantz
    Retrospect backup program. That's probably what I will go with.

    Thanks Colin, and Chuck for your responses and information. For reasons
    not previously specified, I couldn't use an internal drive.
    bj
  4. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.basics (More info?)

    An intenal drive has the drawback of not being portable anyway.

    --
    Colin Barnhorst [MVP Windows - Virtual Machine]
    (Reply to the group only unless otherwise requested)
    "chicagofan" <me7@privacy.net> wrote in message
    news:36kcucF52aua0U1@individual.net...
    > Colin Barnhorst wrote:
    >
    >> 1. Don't worry about having too much space. I recommend that the backup
    >> drive should be at least three times as large as your largest backup job.
    >> I do automated weekly incremental backups. Over time the space used to
    >> back up 10GB can grow to 30GB because what is being saved are the changes
    >> from session to session. These accumulate and at some point I do a
    >> "recycle media" backup and thus start over with a new backup file.
    >>
    >> 2. You can select a backup option that includes the system files.
    >>
    >> 3. The backup program, not the drive, determines what kind of restores
    >> you can do. If you are buying an external hd to use for backups, then
    >> you can select one that has a backup program bundled with it.
    >> If you buy a backup program, BackupMyPC (Stomp) and Retrospect (Dantz)
    >> are good ones. Hint: Always have the cd version of your backup program
    >> on hand and don't depend on a downloaded version. If you have to restore
    >> you may also have to reinstall the backup program first.
    >>
    >> 4. I prefer an external usb2 drive. I have tried a firewire drive and
    >> it was not as reliable about being online when the automated backup
    >> wanted to start.
    >
    > No. 4, is what I am looking at, and the Maxtor One Touch, has the Dantz
    > Retrospect backup program. That's probably what I will go with.
    >
    > Thanks Colin, and Chuck for your responses and information. For reasons
    > not previously specified, I couldn't use an internal drive.
    > bj
    >
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