Disaster Recovery

Creative backup solutions for every situation

Acronis Backup & Recovery 10

Acronis Backup & Recovery 10 provides a powerful interface for automating the creation of disk images. Here's a look at the application's main console, from which administrators can schedule backups, restore images, export backup configurations, create bootable disks, review log files, manage installed disks, view an event dashboard and more. See Spotlight: Acronis Backup & Recovery 10.

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Selena has been at TechRepublic since 2002. She is currently a Senior Editor with a background in technical writing, editing, and research. She edits Data Center, Linux and Open Source, Apple in the Enterprise, The Enterprise Cloud, Web Designer, and...

38 comments
sadiqha
sadiqha

is there any free software for it

UnegvWaya
UnegvWaya

It works fast, reliably, and easily for bare metal, incremental, restore, and hardware independent restore for loading a full OS or full software load on multiple machines.

bill
bill

Cobian backup works well for my network. It's the right price.

modell
modell

I have been using Symantec Backup Exec since it was owned by Seagate and it is hands down the best backup software I have used. I have tried others over the years and I still use things like SyncToy, Windows 7 Backup and Restore, and Acronis True Image Workstation for some of my smaller/special jobs. But from an Enterprise standpoint I have yet to find a software that works as cleanly and as effectively as BEX.

clfraser60
clfraser60

An amazing product for Windows at the right price. This application is highly flexible and configurable. Just one thing lacking...delta copy.

dima_ben
dima_ben

I have tried also O&O DiskImage and other tools. Seems Acronis is best option. But they still have lot of issues in their software. Incremental backup does not work after disk defragmentation and so on.

thesilentman
thesilentman

Why no mention of BackupAssist which is reliable and low priced?

lloydcodrington
lloydcodrington

I found a little application some time back called AJC Active Backup. It backs up realtime as files are edited. Now although I have an i7 12GB RAM machine I know it is very low on resourses and thus an idea choice for people editing files continually. If you are after a realtime backup solution that is the next best thing to having a RAID setup then this software will give you what you want.

peterl
peterl

I have been using this product in a small business for a couple years now. It is an older version than what is reviewed here. I have three windows servers set up with the software configured to back up images to a Netgear ReadyNAS. A few weeks ago I had a complete failure of a server, a drive failed and the mirror container was corrupt at the controller firmware level. It took far more effort to remove the container, verify media on replacement disks, and recreate and scrub the container at the controller level than to complete the restore of the OS partition. The restore was run from an external USB drive, booting the server from the bootable CD you create once Acronis is installed. I will say the restore speed using this method was not stellar, but was tolerable in my environment. It is my understanding that I would have actually seen faster performance if I had opted to restore from the NAS on the network rather than from a copy of the image file on a USB disk, but I don't think I'll trash this server again just to prove the theory. In any event, the product surely saved the day for me, as everyone in house was back up and running the next morning.

sam_roche
sam_roche

Try Cobian Backup. it's free, and very feature rich. it also allows for a remote control feature to manage a bunch of clients.

jack
jack

Dear all, I have a client that has many laptop users. They redirect "My Documents" to the server and make "My Documents" available offline. I noticed that once the size of "My Documents" get larger, more problems occur. I am wondering what solution you are using for laptop users to work on offline files reliably and sync offline files with server reliably. Thanks Jack

jack
jack

I use it for both servers and personal computers.

rajan.sowri
rajan.sowri

I tried using SyncToy 2.1 with windows 7. It answers the basic backup of important documents. But you need to have a back solution such as Acronis Backup and Recovery 10 for a complete back up solution.

reisen55
reisen55

Having a good backup, verified by whatever index field or report, may be a good thing but it is WORTHLESS if you do not know how to restore it. Everything fails at that point and 2 in the morning on a Monday is NOT the time to learn this protocol. I have a unique one for small business support and it works. It is called GHOST and it works, under certain conditions, with small business servers. We all use GHOST for workstation builds but it works well on SATA drives as well. One weekend I needed to restore some lost folders that I deleted by mis-intent and tested restore of Windows 2003 Server two times in 20 minutes - NOT BAD INDEED. BUT if you do not have a restoration procedure in-place for all of your magnificent backups - LEARN IT RIGHT NOW before it is too late, and that is 2am on Monday morning drinking gallons of coffee.

jsmith
jsmith

Here is another backup/file sync program that missed your list. I use Super Flexible File Synchronizer extensively and it is very feature loaded. With an easy to use interface, Super Flexible allows for delta (partial) file copying, scheduling, versioning and backing up to FTP or services such as Amazon S3 and Google Docs. This application has PC, MAC and Linux versions.

lloydcodrington
lloydcodrington

There is a world of free software on the web for doing things like editing text to managing a web server. But with the investment of a few bucks you can give yourself peace of mind when it comes to losing data because of a hard drive failure or with remote backup software then even the theft of a computer or laptop means your information is protected. Now there are some free backup softwares available but as I wrote in an earlier post I have a fantastic backup solution which backs up and keeps an unlimited number of versions of what ever I ask it to and it does so as I edit, not according to a schedule which effectively means I am 100% up to date with my backups 24 hrs a day. And so please look at AJC Active Backup which cost less than ?20. Now that has got to be ?20 worth spending surely. No expert can retrieve information that is not backup but they'll take your money pretending to try. But with AJC Active Backup you can take care of it yourself.

alan_stiver
alan_stiver

Luis Cobian has done a very good job on this product, and the current version went through a great deal of beta testing. It can run as a service, uses Volume Shadow Copy, has a scheduler, and does versioning, allowing you to keep some user-defined number of the most recent backups. And, as bill said, the price is right.

Byaroms
Byaroms

Take a look at EdgeSafe Backup. http://www.datamills.com It is an enterprise, managed, backup solution that can backup PST files while they are in use in incremental manner onto a central network share. It is a robust system that can also backup workstations that scales easily.

AECJRC
AECJRC

Have been using SyncBackSE/Pro (ie. two editions with Pro having extended features) for a few years now, and have found them great. They won't do disk image backups, but will backup / restore, etc your data and files. Very customisable. The licencing for general home users is also very reasonable.

redventura
redventura

Using their Gmail account, you can have each laptop user login to Gbridge and sync any specified folders. It's like making your own cloud! Give it a try - www.gbridge.com

cmtbobaz
cmtbobaz

I use Shadow Protect as well and have restored images (even to dissmilar hardware) without any issues.

SmartAceW0LF
SmartAceW0LF

It simply is not fair to other application developers of this type in using MS SyncToy as a baseline experience across the file synchronizing spectrum. SynToy would be near the bottom of the list in performance and reliability. Just a FYI.

dave
dave

I've had good luck with this Linux based program on many different brands of computers and it's dirt cheap - free. I've used SyncToy for a long time now, and your right, it's good for just backing up your pictures, music, and whatever, but it's only the data that matters anyway.

sfreese
sfreese

I use Acronis True Image Server to sync the partitions between a primary and secondary server. Only one server runs at a time and is connected to the disk array. Restoring files are as effortless, reliable and quick as recording the original partition. Keeps my servers running the same thing, especially after testing patches or upgrading applications.

RobinHoltet
RobinHoltet

I have been using bacula for a few years on 20+ servers. It's not the easiest to setup, but extremely configurable and flexible. For example I'm running scripts before and after backing up to dump mysql and oracle databases and clean up afterwords. Another script is syncing the backup volumes to offsite storage. Highly recommended!

Cliffsam
Cliffsam

A free solution for SMB's is Cobian Backup 10. Can be run a as a service or run automatically upon log in. Offers multiple tasks, backup types,scheduling and even encryption. http://www.cobiansoft.com/

grifs71
grifs71

I like Zmanda, it is fast and I have had to restore files quickly. You can do it from the server via command line or through the Web-interface.

Photogenic Memory
Photogenic Memory

Looks like a fun program and for Linux too! Thanks for the heads up.

SgtPappy
SgtPappy

Google VPN....just what we need. I don't allow Logmein, Go-to-My-PC or any other third party unmonitored-unmanaged VPN solution on my network. Why not just build a real VPN or use a builtin VPN from your router....Cisco? As a Network Admin you need to control access to your network. Programs like this GBridge or Logmein are asking for trouble in a corporate network. I just think it is bad practice to allow a user to defeat your firewall settings by installing one of these programs, relinquishing control of network access to "Jennifer" the receptionist.

dave
dave

I'll give this a try.

jack
jack

Were you prompted to activate your OS and Office after restoring to dissimilar hardware

Spector
Spector

It's a great free linux tool to manage images on the company network with many great tools and simple web administrations. It can handle domain join, FogCrypt, pxe boot discs and what ever boot discs you prefer to have in the boot menu.

jboughton29
jboughton29

Personally, I use LogMeIn as a remoting solution to some of my essential PCs on my network. It allows for me to be able to access these machines no matter where I am, as long as I have an internet connection. Sure, there are are hundreds of great VPN solutions out there, and I will not argue that, but this was a quick, efficient, free (in the beginning until I purchased licenses since I thought it was such an exceptional product for our needs) and versatile. I did my research on it, it's just not a fly-by-night product and it is well regarded so ultimately I would choose this product again if I had to.

redventura
redventura

Even more troublesome is the Portable TeamViewer, which communicates via port 80 and which can also do its own software-VPN. I offered GBridge as a sync backup solution for the original post writer to use his own PC's in multiple locations to sync his files, making his own "cloud" between his multiple sites. To add, it's a free alternative, and he doesn't need to learn VPN using a hardware router or firewall. As for receptionists accessing the network, and other software you don't authorize, your network security policy should cover well enough. I'm certain your firewall can also block the receptionist from using her own proxy settings, completely bypassing your network policies, right?

Bop-Cat
Bop-Cat

I know universal restore is for restoring os to another hdd. This is an easy way, why do you need activation. everything should be ok after using such function this is an related description i found, interesting, hope this useful http://bit.ly/ekfzt9

Neil Gray
Neil Gray

you do need to reactivate Windows, it'll give you 3-days. We use this product all the time, it rocks. Especially for HIR's (hardware independant restores)

hangdawg
hangdawg

yeah i use macruim reflect also excellent software re-images perfectly every time