Software and procedure for backing up hard-drive....

I just did a search and, surprisingly, came up with nothing about this. My computer crashed last week, and this came after months of me saying, “I really should figure out the best way to use my external hard drive to backup my internal hard drive.”

So, that’s what I’m curious about. What programs are best to back up things like settings (especially firefox extensions and preferences), documents, etc. I have an external hard drive, and I’d like to be able to set my computer to periodically backup such things, but I have no idea how best to do it.

I’m using Vista on a dell 1420 laptop. Where do I start?

Try Microsoft SyncToy, which is available as a free download. And read this about how to backup your Firefox profile.

XP has a backup utility. I’ve never used it but this article is pretty good and also gives other options.

Search on “backup software” and you will get a huge amount of info. Not sure what problem you had with your search. There are lots of options using commercial software.

I do not do compressed backups, I just copy files to an external disk. I use a BAT file and the xcopy command to do incremental backups. I think I’m probably a little unusual for doing that but it works for me. I have to kick it off manually, haven’t figured out if there’s any way to schedule it.

I have seen people here say that acronis is good. A lot of big external USB drives come with some sort of backup software although the stuff I have seen is pretty rudimentary.

You might want to investigate the windows backup from microsoft that comes with some versions of vista.,139023769,339272295,00.htm

When I bought an external USB hard drive a while back, it’s “Disk Manager” application came with backup functionality built in. That’s what I use for doing my backups.

IIRC, I tried to use XP’s backup utility but it didn’t seem to recognize the external drive as a device I could backup to. It would only let me backup to my CD drive.