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Backup and disk partition

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Hello. I am new in here, but i searched on this forum, and forgive me if i am mistaken but i did not found anything concerning to backup habbits.

So therefore i decided to say something about it for people to  better understand the concept because many of my clients simply do it so wrong.

Feel free to agree or disagree.

1- Most people, and i say again, MOST PEOPLE not everyone, tend to just copy and paste their files to another partition or even another hard drive and then delete the original ones, and think they have backed up their files. But that is just wrong, i mean, a real backup is when you copy the files to another place but you maintain the original ones. For example, let s say i have my entire electronics digital course, then i copy and paste it to another partition ( wich is also wrong, but i will talk about that on number 2) and then i delete the original. what i am really doing is just gaining space on the partition the file originally was. Nothing more. Now if i have a problem with the hard drive i can loose the file anyway.

So a properly backup habbit is to copy the original file, but still anyway and allway maintain the original, that way if you lose one of them you still have the other one.


2- Now about partition a disk.

First i have absolutly nothing against it. Partitioning is usefull for several thing including defragging; i to usually make partition of my hard drive.

Now, what i say is wrong, (and i am not saying that everyone that do this is wrong, because not everyone has the money for it), is to partition a hard drive just to have the movies and music and documents in it, even if you do the properly backup that i talked on point 1. Because like i said on point 1, if you do use partition just to have a backup, sure, if you just have to reinstall the OS you will not lose your backup. But again, let s say that you have problems with the hard drive, that the hard drive is full with bad sectors, or worse even, is completly dead. Then you just lost everithyng you had it on it. Sure, there are people who maybe can recover the files, but is just to much expensive, and most of the times not worth it.


Now, the correct thing to do is:


1: whenever you can you should have 2 hard drives; not 2 partitions, but 2 fisical hard drives, preferably one obviously on the pc and the other should be an external hard drive.


2: When you do backup, you should allway, copy/paste the files you want to backup to the external or secundary fisical hard drive, but you should keep allway the originals and not delete them. Why?. OK. So, you put the backup on the external hard drive. Then you deleted the original files. It should be save right? I mean, the files are on the external hard drive. Except external hard drives can to be damage and be dead, just like any other hard drive, because that is what they are, just a hard drive. So if you just put the files on the external hard drive and delete the original ones, you risk yourself to lose the hard drive, and then you don t have the originals and you are now empty hand.


And those mistakes are what several people i know and several others i see talking on the internet do.

Again i am not in anyway calling dumb to anyone, and i am not saying that everyone do this mistake. Ok? Please do not get me wrong here.

In fact, i am just trying to help people, who simply never thought about this because is a thing so obvious but believe me, some people don t think about it, and just to prove that, i am telling all this but i to, do not do propely backups. so i guess... BUSTED!!! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Cheers, and hope that i could help in some way.

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Well my dear papaleguas49 I understand just where you are coming from and wish to put my two pennyworth in.


With all my client PC builds (up until retired 12 months ago) included a minimum of two (2) physical hard drives - 1 for system and apps and the other for data. Most of my clients had three (3) hard drives. the 3rd one being for "backups". All backup's were "Macrium Reflect" generated (these a free one for domestic use and a "pay for" version for commercial clients) Search our forum for specific details and specs.


The "proof" is in the eating as they say. Last Friday when I received my evacuation instructions I simply went to my computers and "plucked" out my 2 removable 2.0TB HDD from the 2 - X-Doc slots, removed one 2.0TB USB 3 HDD, a box of software, my backup laptop, my phone, wallet, credit card and keys to the car along with one bag of personal stuff and..........................OFF out-a there.


My point is if in the event of a total loss to me, I have my data, backups, music, photos and movies all on 3 HDD and my software...........now I would be able to recreate everything; back in business in a timely fashion.

Note that Macrium also makes it possible with a SW product that enables one to restore backups to PC's with different hardware in the case of replacement hardware NOT being spec'd the same as original hardware.


As data is so cheap these days.................play it safe install several HDD's in desktops. PS. My system and apps HDD is a 128GIG SSD and I left it in the Box when I evacuated due to the lack of available time.   

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Sounds like you should have a fire proof safe for your backups too @Tasgandy, glad you escaped the bushfires.

Hello Tasgandy, i make mta words, my own.

I never really had the unfortune, (thankfully), of loose my data, at least the really essencial one, but i am from Sao Paulo, Brasil and i lived a couple of years in Rio de Janeiro, and so i lived, as well as many of my clients, with the reallity of floods.

I have seen litterally, people (clients), that i have become really good friend of, crying, (note, that i am not exagerating, i assure you), not because of the fact that they lost their computer, but because of hundreds of their family fotos,videos, some of them of dear people who had already past way.

Now, i alway advised and still advise my friends, family, clients to backup as more as they can, but the simple true here is; not all people have the means to buy another one or even two hard drives. The other true, and perhaps even more than the first is; most people, don t care enough about it and/or don t think to much about it. It is like smoking; most of the people i know who smoke, probably will only really think about it when they start having some real problem.

For me the only reason i do not do backup is simply because what i have in my pc, if lost, i can get it back really easy again. It is just dvd burns, cd burns,games, nothing really important. My electronics and hardware and motherboard and ect..., courses and lessons are really the only thing that i do back up. For that i use one second internal HD, one external HD and DVDs.

Thank you for replying, and also thank you for the real good sugestions you made.

Feel free, you or anyone to, ad, or give more inputs to this topic.

Opinions and sharing are always welcome.

And i am sorry if my english is to bad, but i am a bit rusty.


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Tasgandy, I looked at Macrium Reflect that you mentioned and, it looks like a great piece of software.

I will take a time to test it and study a bit, but from what i am seeing right know, almost certainly will start to recomend the free version, ( i do not work right know with companies, on this moment only with home users) to my clients, well, at least to those ones who are open to the idea of backup.

Thank you.

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Hi papaleguas49, and welcome to the forum.


Some of us on here have been banging on for years about backing up, and we see many, many examples of people not only losing their System Drive (with probably years of installed software and personal data in their "My Documents" folders), but also losing USB hard drives, flash drives and camera cards. And no back-ups.


Add to that the smart phones and tablets that go down the tubes, and you have a lot of desperately unhappy folk and tons of lost data. Much of it irreplaceable.


I think one of the hardest losses to accept is the loss of personal photographs.


You can never have any guarantee that something like a camera card won't go wrong one day, but you can do something to help prevent disaster and aid in the recovery of photographs from such a disaster.


Firstly, "copy" a batch of photographs from the card to your computer as soon as possible. Never "move" data. Always copy. And copy the data with something which will verify the copied data such as "TeraCopy".


TeraCopy: (Free version)


Don't leave your recent photo session on the card until you feel like copying them to your computer because they'll probably still be laying there when you next need your camera, which leads to the next point.


Don't use your camera/phone card like a hard drive. Meaning don't leave photographs on the card and continue adding more and more batches of photographs with random deletions, in a subconscious and misguided effort to get the most out of it's very "large" storage capability.


And large storage capacity cards are now easily available and probably used by most people.


What you are doing in getting the most out of your large storage capacity card (or just being downright lazy) is eventually creating fragmented data and fragmented free space, which means that the camera software will begin splitting up images and videos to fill the fragmented free space.


In the event of accidental deletion or card failure, fragmented files are very difficult and more often than not impossible to recover from a card with freely available recovery software. Maybe possible with professional help, but who can afford to go down that road. Far better to start every new photo session with an empty, properly formatted card.


Then in the event of a disaster you will increase your chances immensely of a successful recovery.


So, after you've copied your files from your camera/phone/card to your computer, do not delete the originals from the source until you have created a "verified" backup of those newly copied files on another drive or separate partition.


Make sure you have two copies of your data before you delete it from the source.


This next bit is personal choice ...


Having done this, I always then format my card properly. And I mean I carry out a full format. In my camera, a "Low Level" format. Although doing this after every photo session obviously uses up more of the cards "life cycles", I don't think I'm in danger of getting anywhere near a cards projected 100,000 cycles (I think that's about right), and it gives me a clean file table with none of the previous contents left on the disk to increase the possibility of file corruption.


This is probably even more relevant if cards are swapped between different cameras which may use different file formats and different directory structures.


As stated, that last bit above is what I do, and it has served me well for many years.


Once you get into the habit of always having two copies before you delete the originals it becomes very quick and easy to do.


Finally, if you have two checked/verified copies of your data on separate storage devices (or partitions), then you could also have a third by creating an "Image" of your "System Drive" with something like "Macrium Reflect" which has already been mentioned in this topic and has been discussed in detail in many other topics on this forum.


Although the primary purpose of a Macrium Image is a backup of your System Drive, to restore in the eventuality of a catastrophic Operating System or drive failure, it is also a "working" back up of all the files contained on that drive, and your personal data may be in your "My Documents" system folders on your System Drive.


I say "working", because an Image can be mounted as a drive, and  explored as such, meaning you can retrieve (or copy) files and folders from that mounted Image as if it was a standard hard drive.


By the way, there's nothing to stop you Imaging data drives as well in the event of drive failure. It's all down to how much spare storage space you have.


To sum up ... don't be complacent or lazy with your precious personal data. Back it up and always have two copies before you delete the originals.



Wow, I didn't intend writing all that, I just sort of got carried away. But, if any of it is useful to anybody, then all's good.


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Hello DennisD, and thank you for your inputs.

You are absolutely right about every thing you mentioned, and i think it will help a lot of people to finaly realize that backup is not a hidrance, but instead is really a life saver.

It hurts nothing to be cautious, like they say: Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.

Not to mention, a lot, and i mean a lot of people that at least in my case, come to me complainig about the loss of important data, or the curroption of their pc OS or even the dead of they hard drive, and if they had made a proper backup of everything, not just the photos and stuff like that, but also, backups of the system and an image of it etc...; they probably to almost certantly, would be able to solve the problem from their homes. because it is not anything so complicating at all. It is in my opinion, something rather simple and ovious.

Instead people do nothing, and then come to me, and i have to charge for a relativetly simple to do, do it yourself service. I mean, of corse i want to make money, i am not a hipocrit, but i make most of my money repairing motherboards,and other hardware.

Like i said, i still do the job, i reinstall the OS, try and some times recover data, atention, (simple and easy to recover data, because i am not a recovering data specialist), and again, of corse i have to charge for the service.

What hurts me is, that people that come to me, do not really have the necessity to do so, if they only putted these concepts that we have been here talking about in their heads, they could have much less problems and headaches, as well save so much money.

No matter what the data is, no matter how secure you feel, accidents, distractions, disasters do happen, so people, please, please, do the backup of your stuff!!!!!

I know i mentioned before that, i to am at fault in this situation, because i generally dont do backup, but also like i said i do not do anything much important on my pc, do not even have photos, documents. And also, i repair and maintain pcs for a living, everyday almost every hour, so, when i am home the last thing i wanna do is to be at the computer. I guess to, that i am like some doctors, caring for the patients, but without absolute concern for myself. Now, the diference is:

when i do someting wrong, something that damage or make me lost someting, i know it is from not being cautious, and either i repair it, or, if not, i do not complain either. But that s just me....

Again DennisD, i thank you for your reply and surely very helpfull input.

If anyone want to ad more inputs, or even questions is more then welcome.


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