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Best 64-bit Vista laptop bootable hard drive clone backup with continuous update?

Posted on 2009-05-13
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Last Modified: 2013-11-14
I am trying to figure out the best way to create a bootable clone of the system hard drive on my 64-bit Vista Dell laptop.  I have tested two different methods of doing this, both of which support continuous updates in the background: Intel Rapid Recover Technology (IRRT) (http://downloadcenter.intel.com/Detail_Desc.aspx?agr=Y&ProductID=2101&DwnldID=17412&strOSs=164&OSFullName=Windows) and Bounceback Ultimate by CMS Products (http://cmsproducts.com/products/backup_software/bounceback/default.html).

I started by using BounceBack Ultimate, but found that the Continuous Data Protection feature would slow my system down a bit and intermittently result in my being unable to access my IMAP mail in Outlook (note that when I contacted CMS Products Technical Support they were unable to replicate this problem.  It may have been due to the large size of my Outlook .pst file).  

I then started using IRRT with an external eSATA drive (in a StarTech Combo eSATA and USB HDD enclosure) and have found that the Continuous Update feature uses very little system overhead.  I now have a clone of my hard drive that I can access easily from another system using USB, but unlike with BounceBack I have not figured out an easy way to encrypt the data since the recovery drive encryption state must be exactly the same as the Master drive on the system.  

I have attached documentation on both methods for anyone who is interested in reading more about them.  I would like to hear from people who have experience using these or other comparable solutions for creating a bootable clone backup disk that can be updated in real time.  My specific requirements are:

1) Easily bootable for Disaster Recovery
2) Continuously updated with minimal system performance impact
3) Secure encryption without too much drag on performance, ideally in a way that can protect both the master and the recovery drives (since Dell helpfully make the system hard drives easily removable for servicing, data protection is a concern)
4) Can switch easily between eSATA and USB ports
5) Can mount on another system without too much fuss required to unlock encryption

Looking forward to hearing comments and suggestions.


Intel--Matrix-Storage-Console-He.pdf
Intel-Matrix-Storage-Manager-8-x.pdf
BounceBack-Ultimate-Disaster-Rec.pdf
BounceBack-Ultimate-User-Guide.pdf
BounceBack-Ultimate-Data-Sheet.pdf
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Question by:Kurvenal
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rindi earned 250 total points
ID: 24383908
I wouldn't clone the disks and make the backup bootable, but rather use an imaging backup utility. The best such tool available is storagecraft's shadowprotect. It can do incremental snapshot backups every 5 minutes (if necessary), and is the fastest product on the market, so restoring from the backup only takes little time. It also includes a universal restore in it's base product, not like the others where you have to pay extra, so you can restore your backup to dissimilar hardware. You can restore the backup from a bootable CD which utilizes Vista's PE version and allows you to add drivers if necessary, so restoring is no problem.

http://www.storagecraft.com/products/ShadowProtectDesktop/
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by:Kurvenal
ID: 24383965
That sounds interesting.  But I am guessing that I cannot access the files in the image on the backup drive slaved to another system very easily, correct?  
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by:rindi
ID: 24384008
You can access them using the shadowprotect booting CD (If you boot from that CD), it'll be able to browse the contents of the image file. If you have shadowprotect installed on that PC too, you can open the images directly. You'd just need an additional license on that other PC.
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by:Dextertronic
Dextertronic earned 250 total points
ID: 24390909
Try a trial of Symantec Backup Exec System Recovery for Desktop
http://www.symantec.com/business/backup-exec-system-recovery-desktop-edition
"Recover in minutes to same hardware, dissimilar hardware or virtual environments with Restore Anyware technology
Create real-time, while-you-work recovery points of the entire system and save to any disk-storage device
Enables offsite backup copy to an FTP location or secondary disk drive for enhanced disaster recovery capabilities
Search and retrieve files and folders in seconds via Google Desktop or Backup Exec Retrieve "
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