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portable hard drive


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#1 figaro

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 02:56 PM

I back up my files to an external hard drive. That is good if the computer crashes but what if the house burns. I hear about portable drives. I guess these are battery operated and can unplug easy? I thought if I had something to keep in my detached studio and bring in once a week to back up files that would be best.

Question 1. What do I need to watch for and be wary of in a device hopefully around $100 or less?

Right now most of my files are in two folders one 8G and the other maybe 3G.

Question 2. Is there a program that will check the files on the backup drive and make only the changes I have made on my PC like deleting files I have deleted and changing documents that I have changed? Is this the function of a program or the drive?

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#2 dpunisher

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 09:15 PM

If that is all you have to backup, you might consider a USB flash drive. I picked up this 32gig at Newegg for $20.00, came in yesterday. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820208552 It comes with some sort of synch software, but have not tried that yet. Since it is only a backup, and you won't be writing large amounts of data all the time, USB 2.0 will siffice. Some other thread here mentioned synch software, I shall look for it.

EDIT: It was on another forum.

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?displaylang=en&id=15155

Edited by dpunisher, 02 May 2012 - 10:22 PM.

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#3 The_Outkast

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 09:23 PM

What version of Windows are you using? We use a program called RoboCopy (it's free) to backup files. I can help you create a batch file that you can run that will sync only the changes you have made since your last backup.

#4 figaro

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 02:42 PM

First for dpunisher. I had thought about that but I have always heard they are slower. Is that true? Plus, many of my files are fairly high pix pictures and I am adding more all the time.

Outkast, Using 7 . Someone else recommended robocopy and sent a link to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robocopy. Looks complicated. I was hoping for a program where you opened it and pressed a button.

#5 dpunisher

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Posted 06 May 2012 - 08:16 AM

Hmmm, I posted a reply a couple days ago, but it didn't show here.

The speed of your external storage is likely limited by your interface. If you are using USB2.0, then it really won't make a difference if you have a WD black in an enclosure/dock, or a high capacity thumb drive. You will usually get about 30-35 MB/sec on USB 2.0, or 100MB/sec on USB 3.0. Now, if you are going to use an eSATA drive, then the picture changes.

I have really gotten away from actual hard drives as external devices that are going to be transported on a regular basis. With the advent of really cheap 32-64 gig flash drives, they have become my preferred backup/synch media. If I accidentally drop it, no biggie. Look around this forum and you will usually find a thread with "I dropped my hard drive, what do I do now?"

I am a retired Ford tech. Next to Fords, any computer is a piece of cake. (The cake, its not a lie)

3770K @4.5, Corsair H100, GTX780, 16gig Samsung, Obsidian 700 (yes there is a 700)


#6 Guest_Xircal_*

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Posted 06 May 2012 - 01:05 PM

Hmmm, I posted a reply a couple days ago, but it didn't show here.

The speed of your external storage is likely limited by your interface. If you are using USB2.0, then it really won't make a difference if you have a WD black in an enclosure/dock, or a high capacity thumb drive. You will usually get about 30-35 MB/sec on USB 2.0, or 100MB/sec on USB 3.0.

Actually, the data transfer rate for USB 2.0 is 480Mbps/sec or 60MB/sec. USB 3.0 offers up to 5Gbps/sec.

However, if the motherboard doesn't support USB 3.0, then it will drop back to the USB 2.0 spec even if you plug a USB 3.0 drive in.

As regards external USB drives, I bought a Buffalo 500GB USB 2.0 drive last year for $35. It takes its power source from the PC or laptop, so no need for batteries or an external power source. Current models range from 1TB to 3TB and start at about $70. Check the Buffalo site for dealer locations.

#7 dpunisher

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Posted 06 May 2012 - 02:04 PM

Actually, the data transfer rate for USB 2.0 is 480Mbps/sec or 60MB/sec. USB 3.0 offers up to 5Gbps/sec.


That's nice, but I was posting "real world" speeds, and I was being optimistic. Now, if someone is running an SSD in a USB 3 enclosure/dock, I would like to see actual transfer numbers on that.

I am a retired Ford tech. Next to Fords, any computer is a piece of cake. (The cake, its not a lie)

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#8 Guest_Xircal_*

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Posted 06 May 2012 - 02:28 PM


Actually, the data transfer rate for USB 2.0 is 480Mbps/sec or 60MB/sec. USB 3.0 offers up to 5Gbps/sec.


That's nice, but I was posting "real world" speeds, and I was being optimistic. Now, if someone is running an SSD in a USB 3 enclosure/dock, I would like to see actual transfer numbers on that.

It's going to be constrained by the max USB 3.0 spec regardless of how fast it is, so you may as well stick to a cheaper USB 3.0 HD.

#9 kisk

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Posted 06 May 2012 - 03:25 PM

Since you already have a hardware backup solution and are just trying to get something off-site, have you ever considered an online backup solution? MS Skydive offers 7GB of space for free, the most that I'm aware of from a free account.
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#10 Guest_Xircal_*

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 07:03 AM

Since you already have a hardware backup solution and are just trying to get something off-site, have you ever considered an online backup solution? MS Skydive offers 7GB of space for free, the most that I'm aware of from a free account.

I can go one better than that space-wise: http://www.adrive.com/personal_basic gives you 50GB free.

#11 kisk

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 07:22 AM


Since you already have a hardware backup solution and are just trying to get something off-site, have you ever considered an online backup solution? MS Skydive offers 7GB of space for free, the most that I'm aware of from a free account.

I can go one better than that space-wise: http://www.adrive.com/personal_basic gives you 50GB free.

Wowzers! Nice find :thumbup2:
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#12 figaro

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 12:19 PM

Thanks kisk. I will look into that.

#13 The_Outkast

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Posted 08 June 2012 - 04:44 PM

That link is a nice find. Figaro, if you do decide you want to back up to an external drive, let me know. Robocopy looks overwhelming, but it's really quite simple. I can help you write the backup script, then all you have to do is double click a file and it will perform the sync.




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