Using Software to Do a Laptop Data Backup

by Rod Dunne on December 9, 2011

in Backup Software, Laptop

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Doing a laptop data backup frequently is generally highly recommended, but few users manage to keep making backups after an initial few attempts. The problem often is that it can be a laborious task. Luckily, synchronization software makes this activity quite simple. In this post, I’ll show you how to use these tools along with some of the benefits and setbacks of such software.

Your starting point is to choose a synchronization application. Final Sync is a popular tool which can clone data between several devices (laptop hard drives, USB memory sticks, external hard drives, etc.). It also gives you the flexibility to configure exactly which folders, files and file types you wish to clone and duplicate between systems.

Recommended synchronization applications

Final Sync – Backup solution that allows you to copy/sync files between multiple pieces of hardware (laptop <-> external drives <-> USB memory sticks).

Software backup pros & cons

The old school approach of burning CDs is still very valid and can prove to be quite economical given the low cost of CD media. However, making CD copies is a time-consuming task which requires your intervention for inserting/removing CDs. By contrast, using synchronization software along with an external HDD seems to be the optimum solution especially with the large capacity hard drives now available.

Benefits

  • With modern large capacity external HDD, you can make a ghost image of entire laptop.
  • There is a once off cost of doing the laptop data backup (i.e. of purchasing the software and external hard drive which can be used for other purposes to).
  • You don’t require an Internet connection to access your backups & can quickly restore files from the backup system.

Setbacks

  • There is a danger of both the backup system and your laptop being lost, stolen or damaged at the same time. This can happen if they are stored close to each other. Always try to keep your backup drive stored in a separate room from the laptop.
  • Doing a laptop data backup still requires some manual intervention. At the very least you have to initially configure which folders are to be backed up. Running the synchronization can however be done usually in a few clicks or completely automated by setting up a scheduled task.

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