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#1 rowal5555

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 04:53 AM

My PC has a 200GB SATA HDD. I was thinking of buying Acronis to regularly image the HDD and store on an external USB HDD.

Are there any pitfalls or anything else I should be aware of?

Cheers.

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#2 Andrew

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 09:27 AM

None that I can see.

The only gripe I have about my external drive (and making backups thereupon) is the speed. USB 2.0 is great for medium sized stuff. But when you're backing up >100GB at a time, you'd better block out an hour or two.

I hear firewire is fast but I don't know.

As for other problems, I can't say I can think of any.

#3 Budapest

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 09:31 AM

There are freeware alternatives to Acronis.

Freeware Replacements For Common Commercial Apps
The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who haven't got it.

—George Bernard Shaw

#4 dc3

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 10:10 AM

I have a couple of friends that use Drive Image and love it.

Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#5 Mr Alpha

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 02:47 PM

Yes the interface is worth giving thought. There are essentially five different interfaces used for external hard drives. You need to know what you have, and in case you have several, which is faster.
  • USB 1.1 This is the old, slow one. Works, but with 1 MB/s transfer speeds, any big backups will take the whole night.
  • USB 2.0 The most common and popular one. Pretty fast with 37 MB/s transfer speeds and found on practically every modern computer.
  • Firewire 400 The big thing before USB 2.0 showed up. Found on Macs, but rarer on PCs. Still it provides a very good hard drive interface, with 28 MB/s transfer speeds. Likely a little faster on a Mac.
  • Firewire 800 Newer, higher speed version of firewire, with transfer speeds of 41 MB/s.
  • eSATA The newest and best. Same technology and performance as the normal SATA found inside computers. Found mostly on new high-end motherboards. Theoretical speed of 300 MB/s. Actual speed nobody knows, faster than all hard drives.
The transfer speed will also depend on the quality of the controller.

Edited by Mr Alpha, 01 April 2007 - 09:03 AM.

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#6 rowal5555

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 10:41 PM

Thanks all.

My machine is a new HP Pavilion and has plenty of USB2 ports and also one Firewire marked as IEEE 1394. I purchased a Firewire cable to download from my vidcam. It is marked IEEE 1394 on both ends and has a PC connection at one end, and a DV connection at the other. I doubt if this would be useable for an external HDD.

Time is not really an issue as the process will be done at night. This machine is on 24/7 to maximise my F@H work units.

Acronis TI will cost me about $NZ75 which I am happy to pay if necessary. Browsed thru the freeware replacements but the only thing I could see was Ghost 2003. I downloaded it but it wants to write a batch file to floppy and I don't have a Drive A: now. Any other recommendations that members have tried and like for complete disk imaging. I was thinking of doing a complete backup once a week and overwriting the files on the external HDD - does this sound like the way to go. I now have XP Pro. My previous machine ran XP Home and melted down twice last year - getting everything back to normal is a real PITA which is why we are discussing this now.

(PS. Just remembered :flowers: that I have Nero BackItUp which came with a new DVD Writer. Does anyone have experience with this?)

Any and all comments much appreciated.

Cheers :thumbsup:

Edited by rowal5555, 26 March 2007 - 11:17 PM.

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#7 TMacK

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 11:36 PM

Hi rowal5555,
After I crashed and only had my Windows back up, I too decided to get set up properly.
Only thing to to keep in mind, and I hate to be a pessimist...is that your external hard drive can crap out too!

Having said that, keeping something on a DVD or CD is better than nothing.

FYI, I paid $45Cdn...whats the exchange rate?
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#8 rowal5555

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 11:45 PM

Hi TMacK

Have just been checking locally and may be able to get clearance stock of Acronis 8 for $NZ48 (about US36) at Dick Smith Electronics. It appears to do all I need as well as the latest V10.?????

Cheers

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#9 TMacK

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Posted 27 March 2007 - 12:06 AM

Yup, latest version is 10. Hope it comes with a real user guide, not one in PDF format like Version 9.
I am in the process of printing mine out....all 79 pages!!!!

Looks like our $$ is about par.
Chaos reigns within.
Reflect, repent, and reboot.
Order shall return.

aaaaaaaa a~Suzie Wagner

#10 Budapest

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Posted 27 March 2007 - 12:27 AM

The reason Ghost wanted to write a floppy is because if your HDD craps out you will need to boot from something in order to restore the saved image. I'm guessing Acronis will let you write a bootable CD. I would check this out before you purchase it.
The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who haven't got it.

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#11 tekchallenged

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Posted 27 March 2007 - 03:16 AM

(PS. Just remembered :thumbsup: that I have Nero BackItUp which came with a new DVD Writer. Does anyone have experience with this?)
I have that on my computer and used it to do the backup to CD. It's pretty straightforward.
Feel free to assume that I won't know what you are talking about...

#12 rowal5555

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Posted 27 March 2007 - 04:34 AM

OK. One more question - I understand the backups are compressed. What would be the minimum size of the external drive needed to back up a 200GB HDD. (There is very little on it yet but I guess that will change).

TMacK. I was reading the Acronis 10 instructions onsite last night and I'm afraid they are still PDF, over 100 pages, :thumbsup: will take a lot of paper and ink :flowers: .

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#13 Budapest

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Posted 27 March 2007 - 04:43 AM

If you want to back up a 200GB HDD then you really need something close to a 200GB external drive. This is because the compression ratio depends on the types of files you are trying to compress.

MP3, GIF and JPEG formats do not compress much at all because these formats already contain compression. On the other hand Word, Excel and Text formats achieve high compression ratios.
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