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Free System Image Backup Software Options?

This is a discussion on Free System Image Backup Software Options? within the Other Windows Software forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. Is there a free system image software (like Acronis True Image) for Windows 10 that supports all of the following?


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Old 05-31-2020, 07:09 PM   #1
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Question

Is there a free system image software (like Acronis True Image) for Windows 10 that supports all of the following?

- Incremental Backups
- Encryption with Password
- System Archive Splitting/Spanning (e.g. every 500MB)
- File/Folder Exclusion

I've tried:
- Macrium Reflect Free
- ToDo Backup Free
- Windows Backup & Restore (Legacy Software)

All have missing features.

I'd love to get more serious about backing up files.

Any ideas?
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Old 06-01-2020, 04:40 AM   #2
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https://www.ubackup.com/free-backup-software.html --Aomei


Quote:
I'd love to get more serious about backing up files.
If so, you'll probably end up paying for the "getting serious" part.
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Old 06-01-2020, 10:30 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by xrobwx71 View Post
https://www.ubackup.com/free-backup-software.html --Aomei

If so, you'll probably end up paying for the "getting serious" part.
Oh, I don't know.

I consider myself quite serious about backing up, and have no need for most of the features listed when dealing with personal computers in a home or small business setting.

When possible, no matter where the setting, I far, far prefer to take full system image backups more frequently than doing incremental/differential backups. It's far faster to restore from an atomic full system image backup than using one as a baseline paired with multiple incremental/differential backups taken afterward. It takes about 2 hours, at most, on any of my systems to take a full system image backup, so kicking one off before going to bed for the night is a simple matter. In offices it's often possible to kick one off during the day, with a low priority assigned to that task, and continue about your business.

I don't ever use encryption when not absolutely necessary, and I cannot conceive of why it would be necessary on a backup where you have complete control over the physical medium.

Given how cheap, and huge, backup HDDs are these days, I haven't needed or wanted splitting/spanning in years.

If one really wants file/folder exclusion for user data, then configuring Windows such that the user data is on a separate partition/logical drive is how I go about that (and I haven't done so in some years now, because it makes restoring more of a chore, and storage is now cheap and plentiful).

To me, serious about backing up means setting up a cyclic protocol for taking a backup, with off-cycle exceptions for instances where either much larger than typical amounts of user data are created in a very short period of time or where a lot of software is installed or system reconfiguration done that you wouldn't want to have to do again, then following it.

The problem with backups is that far too many just don't take 'em at all. If you take 'em, and do so regularly, no matter how you do it you're in a position that's vastly superior to those who don't.
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Old 06-01-2020, 04:01 PM   #4
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Thanks for the info :D

For me:

- Incremental Backups for faster backups
- Encryption with Password for more security
- System Archive Splitting/Spanning (e.g. every 500MB) for segmented uploads to a cloud drive
- File/Folder Exclusion for excluding large re-attainable folders like Games and Videos on C Drive
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Old 06-01-2020, 04:17 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by random1 View Post
- Encryption with Password for more security
This is a serious reply, and not meant to be snarky: If you have physical control of the backup media then encryption is unnecessary and asking for trouble.

I hate to say the number of times I've found that issues with encryption have rendered access to critical information, as well as any ability to recover same, impossible.

If you end up using something that lets you have split/spanned files, none of them alone can be used for a complete recovery anyway.

When it comes to encryption, the first question should be: Do I really believe there is any logical and probable reason that the thing I'm about to encrypt would be accessed by nefarious players? The second should be: "And if they did, what would the worst case outcome be?"

If the answer to the first is, "There is none," then encryption is overkill. If the answer to the second is in the "minimal damage, if any" range, encryption is overkill.

Having access, and easy access, to your own backups when needed is far more important than maximum security if reasonable security measures are already being taken.
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