How to backup my Windows 7 computer?
- Use the Windows 7 System Image Backup utility to create a system image and a backup of personal data optionally
- Install Crashplan and let it automatically backup your personal data to an external drive
Why the creation of Windows System Backup and when?
Because this way you can restore your system for example when the harddisk of your computer has died. You will want to create a Windows System Backup before you (i) set up your system from scratch and (ii) from time to time to be able to restore your system quickly in case of hardware crashes.
Crashplan is Data Backup solution (including cloud storage). See the distinction between backup types below. So, why?
- Crashplan offers to do backups to local external disks for free.
- Crashplan allows to additionally backup your data in their cloud storage.
- Crashplan is offering a Family plan (2 - 10 computers) for about 150 $ a year.
- Crashplan is supporting both Windows and Mac.
Why backup to external disk, why not just cloud storage?
One main reason: restoring a complete backup from the cloud might be very slow. Another reason: you can't trust cloud solutions 100% in terms of reliability etc.
Distinction between backup methods
- System images(all contents in one big image file)
- Cloning drives (duplicates all files, partition tables and MBR to another harddisk or loacation - simply a duplicate)
- Data Backup (Crashplan etc.)
- Data Storage (Dropbox etc.)
Backup Vendors and Backup SolutionsA list of backup and restore tools (also Mac ones) I came across in my search for a good backup and restore solution for my Windows 7 machine.
- Windows 7 System Backup
- Windows recimg utility - cmd utility in Windows 8 to do "refreshes"
- Acronis True Image - system imaging
- Casper 8 - system images, comparable to Acronis True Image
- Crashplan - data backup, see above
- Microsoft SyncToy - a simple data synchronization tool provided by Microsoft
- Backblaze - alternative to Crashplan
- Google Drive - cloud storage from Google
- Dropbox - cloud storage, alternative to Google drive
- Arq - online backup solution for Mac
- SuperDuper! - system clonging for Mac
- Clonezilla - cloning, imaging for various platforms and file systems and free
- XXClone - like SuperDuper!, but for Windows
Resources, Articles etc.A list of helpful articles and resources I came across in my search for a good backup and restore solution for my Windows 7 machine.
- Best Cloud Backup Services 2015
- How to geek: 8 Backup Tools Explained for Windows 7 and 8
- Quora: Which is the best cloud backup service for Mac: Arq or CrashPlan?
- When to image a hard drive, and when to clone it
- Bootable backup for Windows (7) - Like Super Duper for Mac
- List of backup tools for Windows
- PC Advisor: How to back up a Windows PC or laptop for free