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Trouble:


How do I take regular backup of my important data on regular basis?

 

 

Try some folder synchronization utilities. I came across many, I tried two of them : Microsoft SyncToy and SyncBack. SyncToy easier to use and simple to configure.

synctoycreatenewfolder thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre

In this post I will share with you how you can use Microsoft SyncToy to backup your important data to an external drive on a regular basis.


Fix:

First of all, you need to download and install SyncToy from here.

Note: You need to have .Net Framework installed to make it work. If that is missing on your computer, download .Net Framework here.

Now Launch the application, the screen looks like the one above.

Click on “Create New Folder Pair” button. It will open a screen like one below:

 

1. Select the local source folder and remote destination folder. The destination can be a removable drive or a network drive, whichever you prefer .

step1synctoyselectfolders thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre

See the sample below, in this u take the user data backup from my windows vista folder to a removable drive as seen below.

sourceanddestinationselected thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre

2. Now one more really important part. You need to select the Action from “Synchronize” , “Echo” or “Contribute”. You will find the information of each mode by the side.

In short, use synchronize if you want to keep only the latest files and don’t worry about older versions (Not recommended).

synchronizeoption thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre

Echo – this mode is safer than synchronize, but does delete files on other side if the file is removed from source (which may cause problem sometime – Not Recommended mode)

Contribute – this mode will copy new files . deletion on one side does not affect other side. (recommended). This mode may consume some more space, but is safest.

contribute thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre echooptions thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre

 

3. After you create a pair, you can see it in screen below, one with the name “document-backup” in my example. Click on change options if you want to exclude certain type of files or any sub-folders.

syncoptionssetreadytosynchronizefiles thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre

Here u find the options to select sub-folders. Click and u see another window as below this one.

excludefoldersfrombackup thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre

Here un-check the folders which you don’t need, for example I removed the “Saved Games” folder as I don’t want to take its backup.

excludefoldersfrombackup1 thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre

Press Ok and click “Run” button. It will first study and check the files and folders on both sides and will then start copying and creating folders as needed.

comparingfoldersforsynchronization thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre

Copying in progress as seen below:


synchronizationinprogress thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre
This is all you need to do at the beginning.

 

After a week or day or whatever time, when you want to sync the two folders again for backup, you just need to open the SyncToy, select the folder pair, and click “Run”.  On this, it will analyze the changes, and copy the changed files to the destination.

synchronizationaftersometime thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre

There maybe certain errors for system files, as in my case, you can see the errors by clicking the red link, it will look something like ones below:

errors thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre

One more thing is, when you create a pair, SyncToy will create a file at both the folders, like one shown below, don’t remove this file, as it uses this file for synchronization.

filemaintainedbysoftware thumb - Backup Your Important Data On External Drive - Pre

Hope you find this method useful.

 

The second tool I found, SyncBack also does the same, SyncBack a freeware, you can download SyncBack here. The user interface is bit complicated, but you got some extra options if you need in this tool.