Backup date/time and SyncBackPro

imageMy backup tool of choice is SyncBackPro.  It’s a quality product at a reasonable price.

One of the things I backup is my Apple iPhone and iTunes folders.  I take a snapshot of these by using the Compression feature, with a custom filename.

You can generate a custom filename this by creating your own variable in the Profile Setup/Variables area.

In the screenshot (about) you can see that I’ve created the Variable Name DATETIMENOW with the Value %YEAR%%MONTH%%DAY%_%HOUR%%MINUTE%%SECOND%

In the screenshot, this translates to 20180717_213656

I then use this in the Profile Setup for the actual backup:

As simple as that.

What my 3-2-1 backup looks like.

There are people who do backups, and there are those who have not lost data yet.

I use the 3-2-1 Backup strategy, which is:

  • 3 copies of anything I want to keep
  • 2 different backup media types
  • 1 (at least) offsite storage location

In practice, it looks like this:

Wisefaq 3-2-1 Backup

Yes, it’s a bit complicated.  If could be less complicated:

  • if I used “the cloud” for my backup.
    Cost / limited bandwidth rules that out.
    (I backup 100’s of GB, so the cloud would get expensive fast).
  • if I used Windows Home Server.
    The backup software in WHS is image based.
    Image based backups would use Terabytes of space.
    To save space/cost, I’d need a file based backup.

My ideal solution?  Something like a DROBO-like device, which has built in disk encryption.

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Backups with the 3-2-1 rule

A simple rule I’ve learnt over time, with backups.

3 Backup copies of anything you want to keep.
2 different storage media.
1 offsite storage site.

There have been times when I’ve gone to grab a file from backup, and “Arghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh”, it’s missing/corrupted.
With 3 copies, you greatly improve your chances of recovery.  You’re going to make 2 copies anyway, because …

Different storage media types means CD/DVD and/or Disk and/or Tape Online Backup and/or Online Backup.
Because one of those media types will fail on you.

  • CD/DVD – I’ve seen “archival” quality CD/DVD media “bubble”., rendering the disc unreadable.
  • Disk to Disk – my favourite method, but hard drives have been known to fail regularly, aka the IBM “Deathstar” saga.
  • Tape – Does anyone use tape for home backup anymore?  I’ve detailed my experiences with tape backups here.
  • Online Backup – I can’t see any of these failing.  Unless you have not backed ALL your files up to the online service.

So pick two different media types to backup to.  I use Disk to Disk and CD/DVD.

If you have a fire, and you’ve stored your backups next to your (now melted) computer, then your backups are of no use to you.
Keep a copy of your backups at a relatives house.
Or a bank deposit box.
Or even better, use an online backup service.  You can find a list of them here.

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