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Author Topic: Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?  (Read 6865 times)

superboyac

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Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?
« on: November 01, 2006, 10:30:52 AM »
I just had a thought...if I have multiple hard drives in my computer, and one of them is used only for weekly backups.  What is the best way to protect this drive from being modified except for the purposes of backing up?  I don't want to accidentally add or delete anything from the drive, or get confused and think this is one of the other drives and accidentally do something.  I wouldn't even mind if I couldn't even see the drive in my list, except for when I was backing up stuff.

PS This might be kind of an unrelated question, but will I run into any problems if I use the same "bay" for 2 different hard drives when backing up?  Like if I swap the drives once a month?  Will I confuse the computer as to which drive is occupying that space?  Or does it not matter at all?

mouser

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Re: Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?
« Reply #1 on: November 01, 2006, 10:50:22 AM »
you shouldnt have any problems using the same bay for dif drives, i do it all the time. nothing should get confused.  just make sure you use whatever procedure you need to for the swapping hardware.  ie: ide drives in racks need the machine to be rebooted, usb externals need you to use the windows system tray thing to disconnect hardware.

as for accidentally deleting stuff, you could give it clear long name or something.  it's good you are aware of this possibility.  one regularly hears stories of people formatting the wrong drive.  the best cure for this is to pause before you are doing anything serious and ask yourself, am i sure this is the right drive i am about to erase..

superboyac

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Re: Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2006, 05:29:38 PM »
Good to hear, mouser, thanks.  To be honest, knowing myself, I don't think I'll ever have the problem of accidentally erasing or formatting large quantities of files.  But I wouldn't mind being able to somehow "lock" the drive except for the times when I backup.  No big deal though, I'm not too worried.

As far as swapping, I'm going to use SATA drives, so I've learned that you can just hot swap them, which is cool!

You know, if there is any interest, I may write a short article of the details of my backup solution once I finish everything.  It's nothing fancy, but there might be some people who would like to read it.  I'll include pictures also.  I know I've started 2 or 3 threads that are related to my quest for the perfect backup solution.

mouser

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Re: Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?
« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2006, 06:55:35 PM »
please do write one!

NeilS

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Re: Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2006, 07:31:00 PM »
As far as swapping, I'm going to use SATA drives, so I've learned that you can just hot swap them, which is cool!

One thing to watch out for here is that some SATA controllers don't register drives being connected while the machine is running, for some bizarre reason. I don't think it's hugely common, but my new mobo, which has 3 different SATA controllers, recognises hot-connected drives on two of the controllers, but not on the third.

I expect you'll be fine, but you might want to check it works before splashing out on drives.

f0dder

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Re: Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2006, 09:23:56 AM »
Remember that SATA hotswap requires that drive, motherboard/controller (and even the PSU?) supports hotswap.

A drive bay should be good for doing this kind of backup, especially if you get sata hotswap so you don't need reboots. You can then tug the backup disk safely away.
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superboyac

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Re: Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2006, 10:32:37 AM »
If I can't hotswap, it won't be that big of a deal.  I'll just turn my computer off before switching drives, no biggie.  If anyone can recommend a good SATA controller, that would be great.  First, let me mention that I can't use these new PCI Express slots since my motherboard is an old MSI from 2001.  If the controller and drive (Seagate 7200.10 line) are hotswap capable, I should be good, right?

tinjaw

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Re: Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?
« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2006, 01:52:57 PM »
Yes, if the controller and drive are hotswap capable, it should be good.

What backup software are you using? For example Acronis True Image allows you to create a hidden partition that is only available to the Acronis software. (Technically it is available, but for purposes of this discussion or less than advanced users you can consider it so.)

superboyac

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Re: Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?
« Reply #8 on: November 02, 2006, 03:58:10 PM »
Yes, if the controller and drive are hotswap capable, it should be good.

What backup software are you using? For example Acronis True Image allows you to create a hidden partition that is only available to the Acronis software. (Technically it is available, but for purposes of this discussion or less than advanced users you can consider it so.)

Tinjaw, I'm not going to use backup (imaging) software more so than synchronization software.  From a couple of threads in DC forums, I think I'll go with a program called DirSync.  The reason why I want to use synchronization instead of imaging is because I want to be able to use the files on a standalone basis directly from the hard drive.  Furthermore, the files I'm backing are not OS or program, but things like documents, individual program settings, mp3's, etc.  Personally, I don't really care if my OS or programs crash, what I care about are the saved files and stuff.  I can always reinstall programs and OS.

I don't want to get too off-topic, but I've started a few other threads including this one about my backup issues.  Here are the collected threads...I probably should combine all the threads if possible:
http://www.donationc...dex.php?topic=1999.0
http://www.donationc...dex.php?topic=3937.0
http://www.donationc...dex.php?topic=3320.0
http://www.donationc...dex.php?topic=6002.0

f0dder

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Re: Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?
« Reply #9 on: November 03, 2006, 02:47:10 AM »
Don't worry too much about the lack of pci express - there aren't that many devices out yet for it. Seems like the (high-end :)) controllers are still using pci-x or at least 66bit PCI... that won't fit on a normal board anyway, though :)
- carpe noctem

Sugar

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Re: Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?
« Reply #10 on: November 08, 2006, 03:29:42 AM »
I found that the best way for ME to not format the wrong drive is to disconnect the one not being formatted :-[.   Took me  twice to learn it, tho. 

you shouldnt have any problems using the same bay for dif drives, i do it all the time. nothing should get confused.  just make sure you use whatever procedure you need to for the swapping hardware.  ie: ide drives in racks need the machine to be rebooted, usb externals need you to use the windows system tray thing to disconnect hardware.

as for accidentally deleting stuff, you could give it clear long name or something.  it's good you are aware of this possibility.  one regularly hears stories of people formatting the wrong drive.  the best cure for this is to pause before you are doing anything serious and ask yourself, am i sure this is the right drive i am about to erase..
Me, Ambivalent? Well, yes and no.....

Sugar

superboyac

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Re: Best way to protect hard drive that is only used for backup?
« Reply #11 on: November 08, 2006, 09:17:12 AM »
ooo, sugar, that doesn't sound good!