2nd hard drive for back up

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by alanack, Mar 22, 2003.

  1. alanack


    Someone suggested to me on ET that I should get a second hard drive to use strictly for back up. The more I think about this, the more sense it makes to me(my first one failed after 14 months). How does this work? Does XP have to be installed on the second drive? Is there a program that backs ups stuff automatically, or do you just do it whenever you feel like it? What else do I need to know? Thanks.

  2. cartm


    I have an external HD, Maxtor, its firewire so you need a firewire pci card. I don't remember having to do anything, formatting, drivers, etc, I would rec it especially bc you can take it home or where you want. Hope that helps. You can usually get a good deal on them at www.pricewatch.com
  3. You could look into just shadowing/mirroring your primary drive to the second drive and using it as a hot backup in case your primary drive crashes. Some people actually install 3 drives, mirror to one in realtime and once a week break the mirror and remirror to the other spare drive - keeping the previous mirror copy as a cold backup in the event you get hit with a virus or something.

    Another backup option is to look into a writeable DVD and use disaster recovery software to backup your drive to DVD(s).
  4. You don't sound too comfortable with your knowledge and abilities here. It's really simlple. Just plug in the second hard drive and get a very basic backup software and that should suffice. Should you need to get more techinical, holler and we'll try to help out. :)
  5. alanack


    This sounds like what I want to do. But how does it work? Is there a program that will take care of it? I take it it's not necessary to install XP on the second drive, since it's just storing stuff? Thanks.

  6. The best thing to do is to backup your computer to some type of removable media (hard drive, tape, CDR, etc) and store the copy off premises.

    Disk mirrioring is going to limit your chances of loosing data if a hard drive crashes but it will certainly not protect you from a fire or lightning.

  7. I keep it pretty simple. I have a removable hard drive in addition to my working drive. At regular intervals, I mirror my working partitions, (you could do the whole drive just as easily) using Ghost or Drive Image Pro. This copies everything to the backup drive, which could be swapped for the primary drive when needed.

    Since it's removable, you could store it anywhere. I just pop it out of the case so it's immune from any electrical problems. The whole backup of about 30 gig, takes 1/2 hour.
  8. ?
  9. gnome


    1. Yes, OS should be on 2nd drive.
    2. If your backup is running all the time with your working HD, there's the possibility that both HDs get trashed if you catch a virus. Therefore, I keep my backup out of the machine.
    3. Without getting a swapable HD or installing a swap bay, you can just use HD Cloning software. One is MaxBlast 3 which comes with a new Maxtor HD. You just plug you CD's IDE cable into the backup and run the software. Works great. (I run my backup about every 2 months. That way, my updates and patches are cloned over).
    4. Keep one backup copy of data on a CD-RW or Zip.

    Using the above and your HD crashes, you can swap out the HD, copy your good data and be up again in 5 minutes.
  10. saxon


    I recently went through this process. Here is what I did.

    I bought a second hard drive, same size as my primary; not quite as fast, but less expensive.

    I then used a GREAT program that you can download and try free for 30 days (then $35 to purchase). It's called Casper XP (designed specifically for Win2k and XP). It will make an exact copy--not a mirror--of your primary drive onto your backup drive. (I plan to do that once-a-month, and use CD-RWs for daily backup of important files).

    I also purchased a hard drive drawer for the backup drive. After doing the backup, I just pull the second drive out and store it in a fireproof/waterproof box hidden in my garage where no thief would have time to look.

    So...if any of these things happens--primary drive crashes, computer is stolen, house burns down--I'll be able to recover my business very quickly. Casper XP creates an EXACT copy of your primary drive, including operating system, etc., so if your primary just crashes (no big deal, right?), it would be a simply matter of unplugging the primary, replacing with backup, and rebooting. Presto...you're back up in 5 minutes.

    Maybe some of these measures sound a little extreme, but if I were to loose all the work I've done over the last 10 years...I wouldn't know where to begin.

    #10     Mar 23, 2003