Retrospect for Windows 7.6 and CDP
For version 7.6, there are two additions: support for Mozy online backup and the company's $29 Continuous Data Protection (CDP) add-in. Alas, while they sound notable, neither is truly integrated; they can be only roughly categorized as new Retrospect features. The CDP can be launched from within Retrospect, but it's otherwise a separate entity complete with its own system tray app sitting alongside Retrospect's own monitor/scheduler.
Lack of integration aside, Retrospect CDP works well. It differs, however, from many of its competitors (including Memeo Autobackup and NTI Backup 5 Advanced) by not allowing you to select a directory such as My Documents for backup. Instead, CDP selects files via what are referred to as protection policies, more commonly known as filters. For instance, select a filter to backup all Word documents (*.doc, *.docx) and another to back up all JPEG images. It's an easy-to-understand approach for less technical users, but I found it restrictive in practice.
What's decidedly not restrictive is CDP's ability to back up to several different locations. For instance you can keep constantly updated copies of your data on a thumb drive, in a network folder, and on an external hard drive. You also have the option to back up only when a file is saved or periodically even when open files have not yet been saved.
Online backup integration isn't nearly as seamless. I was hoping that I could simply specify my Mozy online backup account as the destination for a backup job, but for now, Retrospect can only launch the Mozy client or, for first -time users, whisk you to a Web page where you can sign up. The first 2GB at Mozy are free; you get unlimited personal storage for $5). I use and recommend the service, but it's not truly a feature of Retrospect itself.
Other Retrospect 7.6 improvements include a Mac client that now runs in native mode (not emulated) on both Power PC and Intel-based Macs; better support for 64-bit operating systems; and the ability to backup a Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 operating in a two-node Windows Server 2008 Cluster environment.
Retrospect 7.6 Professional is $129, which includes two client licenses for backing up other PCs or Macs over a network. Additional client licenses are $39. The upgrade to version 7.6 is free for registered 7.5 users.
Note: This download takes you to the developer's site.
--Jon L. Jacobi