Best way to do a disk image Backup for 12 Computer Network
Posted on 2012-03-25
I have a small peer to peer network. Computers are various models of Dell Optiplexes running either Windows XP Pro. or Windows 7 Pro. Primary function at each computer is to access a cloud based application that runs the business.
I'm looking for a good way to image the existing computers so that I can restore them quickly in the event of a hard disk failure. I'm not as concerned about losing individual data files but would like the option to do daily updates on select computers if needed. This is not a must however.
I was thinking about using Acronis to perform image backups to an external hard drive twice a year. This would be a manual process going from one computer to another moving the Acronis disk and the external hard drive. I might be able to skip backing up each computer individually since I have four copies of one model computer and 6 copies of another.
As I've looked at this, I have considered Windows Home Server but figured that it may not be that economical and may be more time consuming by the time that I get done converting an old computer to a storage server and buying the extra hard drives.
I've also looked at Seagate's Black Armor NAS 110 with a 2 TB disk. Price on that comes in at about $200 which isn't bad. It only has a license for 5 computers but I can purchase additional licenses if I want image copies of everything.
I understand that QNAP might also be an option.
So at a minimum I want to image the comptuers I have, getting at least one image for each model that I have. If I go with an onsite backup it would be nice to be able to access it remotely. Also, if I go with onsite it would be nice to have automatic backups of individual computers, anywhere from one to all 12 depending on how easy it is. I don't mind purchasing multiple NASs if it makes sense.
I don't have a need right now for any shared files.
Thanks in advance for your input.