Easy to Use Back-Up Programs for Backup-Confused UsersPosted: September 27, 2011
There is no doubt that our systems should be backed up on a regular basis. This is a well known fact of life; if you own a PC and store ANYTHING on it, you need to back it up, or risk losing it all. Let me tell you a story – a true story mind you – about a lady I used to work with who never backed up her PC. This lady was an avid picture taker, I mean she took pictures of eevvveerrryythhhiiinngg. She had a very impressive collection of pictures she had constructed over the years of her children. She had thousands of pictures that ranged from birth all the way up to 12 years old!!! Then one day it happened; she woke up one morning, turned on her PC and the dreaded black screen with the white cursor was there to greet her, followed by the blood curdling clicking noises made by a crashed hard drive. How do I know this you ask? I know this, because she came to me in tears and asked me if I could retrieve her pictures from her hard drive? She explained to me the circumstances and that she had her children’s entire lives in picture format on this drive.
“Should be no problem”, I said, ” just go get you a new drive and we’ll restore your pics from one of your backups.”
“…Backups?” she asked sheepishly, “I don’t have one”
“You don’t have a backup?!” I asked in shock and terror, “all of these pictures and no backup?!”
I tried every trick I know to salvage her memories. I put the drive in the freezer, tried to unstick the platters, even had her send it off to Data Master’s and they couldn’t lift it either. These memories were now just that…memories. You see this lady fell into the same trap that many people fall into; especially those who aren’t comfortable with their computers. Fact is, we all know we should backup our systems; unfortunately though, the software for backing up your system is often complex and very confusing to configure and use. If you fit in this category, please read ahead, because have I got good news for you. What if I told you that there were backup programs out there that were built just for people who fit this category? wait…you would do what?!….ummm…that won’t be necessary…how about I just tell you, because I like you? Anyway, here are 5 backup programs that are easily to use
This is a backup solution that is done online, and VERY simple to use. If you know how to open your email, or even how to use your mouse, you can use Carbonite. Really all there is to it is a simple installation and basic registration and you are off and backing up. There are very few options to configure and even less to get wrong. Now keep in mind, anytime you you use an online backup solution you will inevitably have to deal with the drawbacks that come with an online solution (i.e. restore speed and lack of bare-metal restore). Also, Carbonite, will not copy to local storage. But hey, that’s a small price to pay in order to have an easy to use backup solution that will continually run and backs up files as soon as they change, right? Not to mention that it is also relatively inexpensive as well. at only $59 per year (per computer) for the basic plan, you get the security of knowing you will now be losing an entire lifetime of memories that you have populated over the years.
Here is another very well known and respected backup solution. While it dies have the disadvantages of the online backup, it definitely makes life much easier. Mozy, like Carbonite, also will continually backup your system, with files as they change, and also has mobile apps for your smartphone that will allow you to view your backups on the go. The biggest difference between Mozy and Carbonite is the way that Mozy sets it prices. Mozy prices monthly on storage allotments instead of a per year basis. Basically, Mozy’s pricing is based on your storage needs, which means it will likely be cheaper than Carbonite for some users and more expensive than Carbonite for others. Click Here to see Mozy’s pricing.
3. Windows Backup
Of the 5 choices listed on this post, Windows Backup is by far the most complex to use, but has enough wizards built in to walk even the greenest novice through how to set up a back plan. One major difference between the Windows Backup and the previous 2 options is that Windows backup does not provide a continuous backup option. Although, it does have the option of being free, and can perform a bare-metal restore using nothing more than the backup files and your install disk. The advantages do outweigh the disadvantages in my opinion, but again, it really depends on your comfort level. If you are not comfortable with this option, by all means, go with one of the others.
Similar to Windows, Comodo Backup is a bit more technical to use than the first two options, however also like Windows, it has enough wizards included that a novice should have no trouble walking through implementing a backup plan. Also, Comodo is also offering a Free Session with a Backup Expert to Configure your Program the You. This is definitely a very innovative feature that sets Comodo apart from the rest. Additionally, Comodo also includes a “profile” feature that compiles various backup settings bundles that makes this program even easier to set up. This back up program can backup to an external Hard Drive (giving you a faster restore speed) as well as backing up online (providing you with an off site backup). Not only is this backup solution very flexible, it is also FREE!
If you have read this blog for any length of time at all, then you are aware that I LOVE Dropbox! While Dropbox is made for sharing your files across multiple devices, it could be used as a backup solution as well. This is especially useful for people with pictures and music. If you are not concerned with backing up your entire C Drive and System files, Dropbox is your program. You get 2 GB’s if storage for free, with subscriptions up to 100GB available. You will have access to your files 24/7 anywhere with an internet connection from Drobox’s secure website. If you have the free client installed on your PC’s or App on your device, you will have access to your files even if offline. You need this program regardless of what you use for a backup solution LOL!!!!!
There you have it, 5 suggestions for easy backups. Now you have no excuse if you lose the pictures of your child’s birth to Senior Prom!!! See Ya’ next time!