My first reaction to the "all or nothing" approach to backup was negative...
I want to decide what to back up and when. But after I've used it for a
while, I've grown to like that approach. Disk space is just too cheap and
those decisions are just a speed bump that might prevent me from taking a
backup at all. Or from backing up everything I should.
That was the design philosophy, as I understand it, and now I agree. I have
an 80GB system and with an external 150GB I can take a file backup everyday
for weeks and the occasional CompletePC backup when things are installed.
It's very handy.
It would be nice to be able to specify when to start a fresh backup set. I
do that now by partitioning the external drive into two logical drives. When
one fills up I switch to the other.
I'm not so happy with Restore however.
Having to boot the CD to do a CompletePC restore is silly. Having an option
to install a recovery environment to a separate partition seems like it would
be simple enough. I guess I can do it by downloading 1GB of tools, but...
A bigger complaint is that the restore tries to be too simple. It's not like
having a one-click operation is necessary to convince me to restore my
system... I HAVE to restore my system. And it's extremely frustrating when I
get cryptic error messages about disk size, number of disks etc.
Problems I've had:
Wouldn't restore an image from an 80GB drive to another 80GB drive that
because it was a few hundred MB smaller when formatted. (In spite of the
system disk having 20GB free.)
Didn't like my drive configuration because it backed up from F and the new
disk installed as E. (I had to plug in a dummy IDE to get past that.)
Installs to a RAID card drive when configured with one JBOD disk, but not
when configured as RAID 1. (Which sort of defeats the purpose of having a
RAID card. This is a Promise card listed on the Hardward Compatibility site.)
Maybe it's a card problem, but it's hard to troubleshoot with a lame error
like "not enough disks". The command line option sees the same configuration
So basically, there should have been a lot more effort put into making sure
that if it's a valid backup image and a reasonable system, Restore will let
you configure a way to get it on the machine. Sure, one-click is nice if you
haven't changed the configuration at all, but if the system is older, it's
quite likely you CAN'T get the same configuration after a failure. More
complicated scenarios are acceptable when I need to get my system back.
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