Backup Time

May 31, 2006

Every once in a while, I revisit my backup strategy. Currently I keep the following backup sets:

  • Daily (USB External HD)
  • Weekly (USB External HD)
  • Monthly (USB External HD)
  • Quarterly Off-site (DVD Media)

This seems to work so far. Backup is often touted but rarely implemented. Personally, I use something very, very similar to: Geek to Live: Automatically Backup Your Hard Drive.  The part I am reevaluating is the quarterly off-site archive portion.

I used to do monthly off-site archives and burn my backups to DVD that I would either keep in a safety deposit box and/or a location far away from my home but to do this, I was doing this with a software called Dantz Retrospect Backup but the thing that is starting to turn me off about this software is:

  1. The disks are stored in a propriety format
  2. Cannot be read by anything but the software
  3. The software *must* be reinstalled to recover the data

Basically, it all stems from the fact the data is stored in a propriety format. SyncbackSE (What I use to do the backups to external USB), is able to just copy the media over with no problems and issues, however it cannot write the backups to span multiple DVDs! Currently, my off-site archive takes roughly 9 DVDs to complete and I need disk spanning. They are supposed to be  releasing a *pro* version soon that will support media spanning!

Ohh.. for those thinking about backing up to an external USB drive, if you don’t encrypt the backup sets, encrypt the whole drive! I use something called TrueCrypt to do this for me. Check it out, it’s definitely a great piece of software.  Check out the Security Now podcast for more info!

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2 Responses to “Backup Time”


  1. […] Hmm… I guess this makes sense since they quote a $5 monthly fee for unlimited data storage.  Is Carbonite the solution to my offsite archive dilemna? Perhaps, while it does have some limitations, I feel if using it as a second or even third level of backup, it’s not a bad idea. Share and Enjoy:These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages. […]


  2. […] I’ve written a couple of times about the importance of backing up one’s data and some of my own approaches (Backup Time, The Offsite Solution, Remember to Encrypt, Backup Separation).  I’ve decided to readdress this issue after the recent purchase of my 400GB Samsung SATA hard drive. […]


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