Sunday, August 22, 2004

Handy Backup - backup made simple

Last month, Erik gave me a hard time about my utter failure at back-up, and concluded by saying that “I hope to convince Rick to back up his data.”

I’m happy to report that I’m now backing up my entire hard drive on a regular basis, and it couldn’t be simpler. In the past, I’d passed on online backup solutions, because the prospect of paying what amounted to “insurance” (pay a set fee per month in the hopes that you never need to use it) seemed like a situation I’d rather avoid. Furthermore, I didn’t want to put my faith in a service that might disappear tomorrow; a few years back I used a couple online file storage sites (akin to web-based hard drives) which vanished unexpectedly (with no prospect of rescuing the files I’d stored).

In any event, I’d seen a couple positive reviews of Handy Backup, a tiny program you run on your PC. After just a couple weeks, I’m hooked.

Here’s what Handy Backup lets me do:

  • schedule backups of selected files/folders, to run whenever I want (I have /My Documents backing up nightly, at 3am)

  • synchronize folders across our home network (so I can mirror my documents and my wife’s, so that we always have two copies of everything)

  • store copies of my backups remotely (in my case, using unused disk space at my personal domain) via FTP (currently it uploads a 80 megabyte backup file nightly at 4:30am)

There’s more that Handy Backup can do, but this alone has created a remarkably robust backup solution for me (and my wife) — all for $30. How can you beat that?

1 comment:

  1. For the last eight years, I was using Connected Backup, a similar online backup service costing 14.95 a month. Just about two months ago, however, I ended my subscription in favor of a hardware-based solution: I back up my data (and only data) to a 20-GB Storix portable hard drive.