Better Backups

When you have problems with your system, do you find yourself wishing you had done a better job of backing up? Honing your backup strategy can save you a lot of time and trouble--especially when you have to restore your system.

To help you choose your backup hardware and software wisely, we analyzed five of the most common backup scenarios, and evaluated eight all-in-one backup products in the PC World Test Center to identify the ones best suited for each task.

Whether you have a gargantuan hard drive, a laptop that needs backing up on the road, photos you want to preserve, multiple PCs to be backed up over a network, or just protection against a system catastrophe, these products and strategies can get you on the path to regular backups.

We also examined ten backup applications you can use with that storage device on your desk, and found that some are better suited to certain tasks than others.

Note: For products named in boldface, see the box near the bottom of the page on which it's mentioned.

At a Glance
  • Ximeta NetDisk Portable 160GB Hard Drive (Ximeta-NDU10160)

  • Sony DRU-700A DVD?RW Writer

  • Maxtor OneTouch External 300GB Hard Drive

  • Iomega Rev 35GB USB External Drive

  • Sony Professional Data Disc

  • CMS Products 80GB USB 2.0 Automatic Backup System for Notebooks

  • LG Electronics Super-Multi GSA-4120B

  • Adaptec Snap Appliance Snap Server 2200 - Network storage server - HD 250 GB x 2

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