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External HD Backups: Are Moved/Renamed Files Backed Up Twice?

Hello, I'm trying to figure out why my backup drive is so full? I move files around and rename them often, so I'm wondering if the backup doesn't actually backup my files and folders so much as adds anything new to them?

For example, if I delete a folder on my computer, does it also delete on the backup hard drive? And if it *doesn't* backup like this, does anyone know of a program that does it "right"? Because anything other than that just isn't going to work for me.
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  1. Best answer
    It will not delete the backup on the external HDD if you delete it on your internal HDD, this is the design of a backup solution, the data is backed up incase of accidental deletion.

    Most software will delete old versions of the backup if you set it up to. Example setting a backup retention to 14 days will hold the last 14 days of backup's will purge anything beyond 14 days.

    What software are you using?
  2. That would defeat one of the primary features of a backup programs which is to recover accidentally deleted files. Instead of backup, to may want to look at File Sync software.

    https://www.freefilesync.org/
    http://www.2brightsparks.com/downloads.html
    http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=15155
  3. What software are you using to backup? Or are you just dragging and dropping folders?


    I would suggest syncback. You can setup many specific parameters including which specific subfolders to backup/not backup, other filters, include/excluded added files/folders, full scan or archive attribute backup, what to do with files/folders on destination not on source.
    You can also setup scheduling as well. If you are going to schedule it I suggest you go into computer management and change the external's drive letter to something in the last half of the alphabet that wont be used. This way the drive will always be assigned to that same letter and helps ensure success of an automated schedule.
  4. File syncing is fine for some uses, but not as a true backup. A corrupt or infected file will sync as is, making the new file just as useless as the old file. Of course backup software can also backup bad files, but since most backup software doesn't operate in real time, you have an oppurtunity to restore a good file from a backup.
  5. Of course, same applies to a accidentally deleted file..... however, if using a mirror backup, that corrupted file would still overwrite the good file. You can use versioning backup software or even filesunc software that retains versions of files

    That's why I do not recommend external drives in enclosures bundled w/ off software.

    A external HD docking station (i.e. BlacX) where you rotate a number of drives is a safer solution. In addition, a backup system where the backup is on same desk is kinda useless in case if fire, theft, storm damage etc.

    http://www.tgrmn.com/

    More here
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_file_synchronization_software
  6. Hawkeye22 said:
    File syncing is fine for some uses, but not as a true backup. A corrupt or infected file will sync as is, making the new file just as useless as the old file. Of course backup software can also backup bad files, but since most backup software doesn't operate in real time, you have an oppurtunity to restore a good file from a backup.



    That's why I pay the extra $35 for the SE version of syncback that has versioning.
  7. Thanks for your answers, people! I now have a better understanding of how it works, and why it works that way. @Snipergod87, I am using the Toshiba software that came with the external hard drive; the Windows backup program wouldn't work with the Toshiba for some reason.

    I'll try to look into the 14 day schedule thing. I really need a system that updates my files and folders as they are (sync).
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