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Anyone know of a good free backup utility?


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PhiLho
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Well, Diamond, thanks for the feedback.
I think other links are welcome, this topic becomes a good reference on the topic... :-)
This kind of software is critical, so good functionality and reliability is important. Something often overlooked is to check the result: how easy is it to get some archived file, without unarchiving gigabytes of data?

[Cobian] have a couple of advantages over Abakt like built-in scheduling and the ability to run completely hidden.

Indeed, Cobian can run as service, at given intervals, that's nice, but of course, one can use the standard task scheduler to program backups, as long as the software has command line options.
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Diamond
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Yes, I agree. The built-in scheduler isn't really a big deal, it's just a minor convenience. And Abakt like most backup utilities that don't have built-in scheduling, does have command line options. Unfortunately there's no switch to have it run completely hidden, only minimized. I tried getting AutoHotkey to hide it, but with no success.

fsnow55
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Diamond/all, thanks for your inputs. I've been searching for a backup solution too and now abakt is the front-runner.

I was hoping that the backup sw will allow me to save a "clean" copy* of my disk e.g. after disinfecting it for virus/spyware. Is abakt good for this purpose? It'll imply that it should be able to auto-delete files that are no longer in the source, perhaps with a special switch. For normal backups, I'm OK with it not deleting such files (some virus might delete files).

One other nice to have for the backup sw is to allow multiple images. Hopefully abakt does this.

Any ideas? Or maybe this is best left for AHK scripting?

* perhaps this could be done with Windows Restore point? I've general distrust for MS pgms (e.g. IE bloat/needless spying) so I'm ignorant here.

PhiLho
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Not sure about abakt, but XXCOPY can surely do that. It has some learning curve, though (but doc is rich with examples).
There are other softwares for directory synchronization, of course.
Simple advice: test your candidate on a small set of dummy files and dirs.
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NewGuy
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I was hoping that the backup sw will allow me to save a "clean" copy* of my disk e.g. after disinfecting it for virus/spyware.

* perhaps this could be done with Windows Restore point? I've general distrust for MS pgms (e.g. IE bloat/needless spying) so I'm ignorant here.


You don't need a backup program, you need a partion or disk imager.

SanskritFritz
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Diamond
If you also need incremental backups (Abakt doesnt seem to support that), here are two very good candidates:
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Is there another word for synonym?

Diamond
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@SanskritFritz
Actually it does, but thanks I'm always willing to look at other alternatives.

Diamond
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Although this thread is somewhat outdated, I thought I would post an update to let everyone know about the application which I finally settled on for a backup solution. I spent lots of time looking for a backup utility, but as it turns out a file/folder synchronizer came much closer to fulfilling my requirements.

DSynchronize
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Washboard
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Toucan 1.1 is portable, allows you to do the basic work in backups, it can synchronise directories and make some file crypting. And it's freeware...

majkinetor
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I tried all suggested utilities and they all suck.

The only desent one is SyncBackSE but it has interface that is combination of wizard and fluffy that is suitable for idiots. Nevertheless, features are very good.

So, I am still using my old choice that has clean interface, more features then SyncBackSE, its very small and fast and intuintive. Its shareware but due to the bug in the program or something, sometimes it states its cardware in info box :)

BackupX

Application is designed to be portabile and appart registration info it holds in Registry, once installed you can just copy it among your portable apps.
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daonlyfreez
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PolderBackup (simple backup, with GUI)

Bask (last freeware version: 1.41 Build 80 Beta 1 ), search for it.
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majkinetor
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Found another one, definitely THE best out there.

Just check it out, unbeatable: KLS Backup
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daonlyfreez
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Looks nice, not free however
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majkinetor
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It has too many advanced options to be free...

For instance, you can make backup via Web, choose compression between SQX, ZIP & 7ZIP, very nice interface, portability, settings about how would you like to compare (Time, CRC....), sync tool, shreder tool, plugins, registry backup, ftp backup, backup to ISO file, MySQL backup etc...

Its also very fast.

Although, for some reason, my unicode file names faild to copy (maybe cuz SQX packing though). This is strange, since app is done in Delphi and is using TNT controls (set of Unicode aware controls for Delphi) so it would be stupid that entire app is unicode aware, but it can't handle unicode file names...
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Chicken Pie 4 Tea
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I've tried several backup progs over the years some free some not.Trouble is when it came to it - my computer wasnt working right and i wanted to move back to the backup version. they all failed to "turn back the clock" even the built in system restore could not restore to an earlier time - the one time i need it so now i dont use any backup progs. It just seems a waste of drive space both for the program itself and the backups it makes
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