There are many ways and devices to backup your Data, and I have moved from doing secondary manual Data backups with CD’s to DVD’s to HDD’s and now to SSD’s. Microsoft and Linux both have Data backup methods, but they seem to be automated too much for me, and besides, I don’t want my secondary backup drives attached to my computer/s except when doing a backup of all my data. Maybe I’m too paranoid for the automated and/or incremental backup methods, what with the backup drive always being attached to the computer. I tried Windows 10 Windows Backup recently, but it wasn’t what I wanted. Linux, as usual, has a bunch of Fragmented names for their various data backup choices…again, seems to require that a drive be attached too often, and it never seemed to work right when I went to restore data. I use Clonezilla to do ‘some’ full Linux image backups, but it is just so slow that it’s almost easier to just reinstall my Ubuntu 18.04.3 OS. I use the Windows 10 Backup and Restore (Windows 7) app/program strictly to create a “system image” of my OS drive in order to do a full restore of Windows 10 OS and all my settings, apps, etc. I do that backup about every other day.

That’s a shot of my main PC’s (Antec Jr.) drives: Disk 1) Local Disk (C) is highlighted with a Red-Rectangle, is a 256GB PCIe M.2 NVMe with Windows 10 Pro and Microsoft Office 2007 on it, and any data that ends up on it gets deleted or moved to my main data drive. Disk 2) highlighted with a Lime-Rectangle, and is partitioned to contain the Main DATA ( W ) partition (389GB’s & all Data is there), and the 2nd partition is WIN10a (X) that is used for a full system image backup (about 88GB)…all on roughly a 480GB SSD. Disk 3) highlighted in Orange-Rectangle, is WIN10b (Z) and is used only for another system image backup…a 120GB SSD. I also do ‘secondary’ system image backups on two other SSD’s that get both data and system images copied or made to their partitions for such. If my main PC and all its drives go down, then my Data copies and system images are never over a week old. Businesses and/or individuals who add a lot of data each day certainly need better backup methods than I use. BTW, I just cut/thinned down my total Data from 175 GB’s to 104 GB’s…got rid of some old Linux iso’s and some never used programs…thin out my Data once a year.

Antec Jr. is my main PC, so it gets and distributes all Data, plus does all the Data backups. If I want to add some data to another computer, it is usually a small amount that is easily and quickly added to a USB Flash drive; however, my other computers (even the laptop) don’t really have a need for large amounts of Data…if they do, I’ll plug in one of the secondary Data drives, and/or add what I need. USB Flash drives are just too slow for me to use as a method to transfer or save lots of Data, e.g. 104 GB’s of Data. Here’s a pic of a recent test:

That’s from a 128GB PNY USB Flash drive, and has only completed 6% of 104 GB’s in 12 minutes…like I said; USB Flash drives are just too slow for me. I tried it with NTFS formatting and the default exFAT formatting…exFAT was faster. Got that 128 GB USB drive from Dell on sale for about $16 total cost, and rarely use it. BTW, just bought two 120GB Hyundai SSD’s for $15 each, so I’m done purchasing USB drives over 32GB. BTW, that pic showed like 10 hours left, but ‘Time remaining’ fluctuates a lot during copying, so I’m not sure how long it would take – besides too long. I have some other examples of transfer speeds later in this post.

Part 1:

Here’s my method of Backing-up-Data with a computer case that has at least one 5.25” external bay (two is a *LOT* better and more flexible, IMHO). 3 of my main Test computers have no interior drives – 2 other computers are a laptop with 1 interior SSD, and a useless Small Form computer that has one interior SSD (that computer gets no use anymore – other than stripping for parts*). Stick a 5.25” Trayless Hot Swap Mobile Rack for 3.5” HDD in that bay…they run from $20-24 for decent ones, and they look like this:

I like these Hot Swap bays because they are cheaply priced, support my dwindling HDD collection, and they can use this following Hard Drive Adapter Converter ($8 at Newegg):

That Hard Drive converter takes a SSD that you plug inside. One of my computers has a combo 3.5” bay & 2.5” bay Hot Swap, but the fan in it is too loud for me – avoid any Hot Swaps with fans, IMHO! There are different types – usually more expensive – some are just for SSD’s, and can fit in the 3.5” external bays (hard to find at times – Kingwin KF-250-BK). Heck, I just bought that Kingwin for $28…had been watching it for a long time, had no price drops, and eBay was only seller I ever found. Have also been stocking up on SSD’s so they are used more often than my old HDD’s. Here is floppy drive Kingwin pic:

Here is a pic of that 104 GB’s of Data I’m looking to copy:

Here is a pic of the copying in process:

Speeds of over 300 MB a sec to well over 400 MB a sec … took 9 minutes to copy 104 GB’s from Main DATA partition to Local Disk (E) as a secondary Data backup method. No USB Flash drive I’ve ever tried comes close to such speeds. This method is using SATA to SATA SSD’s in order to reach such speeds.

Also did this test on new Test Bench build ‘Ryzen’ computer:

It took 13 minutes to copy Main DATA to a test SSD – another SATA to SATA, on a Test Bench, so no Hot Swap bays involved – just plugged directly into MoBo.

Part 2:

At this point I decided to pull the useless* Small Form Factor ‘InWin’ computer from the trash bin, remove all covers, add 8GB of memory (‘re-borrowed’ from ‘Ryzen’ computer), add a SATA Power Y Splitter Cable AdapterThInGiE’ (because this small computer only came with one SATA power connector!?!?), and then added a secondary Main DATA SSD plus a SATA cable. Basically, I wanted to test my backup methods a little more, so here’s my method to Backing-up-Data on Small Form Factor ‘stuff’.

Here are a couple quick pics with new AbergBest camera – these aren’t much better than the 11” tablet did, but taking and transferring is 1000% easier!

Maybe I should’ve avoided the flash…anyway, still getting used to this camera, and it also shows what’s involved when working with Small Form Factor computers, e.g. having to remove cover/s to do most anything extra.

This is going to be a SATA to USB method, so you’ll need something like this StarTech USB 3.0 to 2.5″ SATA III Hard Drive Adapter Cable with UASP ($10-14):

They only work with SSD’s or 2.5”HDD’s (*NOT* 3.5″ HDD’s!), but are fast because of the “UASP” transfer method they use. What is UASP?

Here is the copying process:

That method – SATA to USB – took 14 minutes…not bad for an Intel Celeron G4900. I want to try a less destructive method next, i.e. one that doesn’t require removing cover/s. It will be a USB to USB method, so we’ll need a USB Docking station (like $20 for basic 3.0 SSD/HDD USB ones) – looks like this:

Here is the USB to USB copying process:

Amazing! The USB to USB method took only 15 minutes to copy 104 GB’s of Data – sure says a lot about that 3.0 USB UASP ‘stuff’ (whatever it is?!).

Part 3:

OK … almost done and ‘Ace’ the Laptop is up next. Same USB to USB method (used in ‘InWin’ above tests), of Backing-up-Data gets used on my laptop, so we’ll need the StarTech USB 3.0 to 2.5″ SATA III Hard Drive Adapter Cable with UASP and the USB Docking station again. Here’s a pic of that copying process:

Ace’ the Laptop took 22 minutes to do the USB to USB data copying method, so that AMD A9-9420 laptop processor is probably just a lot slower than the Celeron G4900 used in ‘InWin’. Still, we’re talking about copying 104 GB’s of data from SSD to SSD using two UASP devices…i.e. 3.0 USB devices.

Summary:

The speed differences of 9 minutes to 22 minutes were apparently caused by several things, e.g. different processors, the PCIe M.2 NVMe SSD is faster than a 2.5” SSD, and SATA to SATA seems a little faster – in general – than USB to USB UASP devices.

Tidbits: Small Form Factors and Laptops don’t have enough 3.0 USB ports, especially not enough for testing…thusly, something like a 4-Port USB 3.0 Hub with Individual LED Power Switches comes in handy for lots of USB stuff ($7-12 at various places).

I’ve been doing similar secondary manual Data backups for over 20 years now, going from CD’s to DVD’s to HDD’s and now to SSD’s, and it has worked well for me…as a recently ‘Thinned Downed’ Data folder of 104 GB’s now reflects.

May do some more testing of various backup methods in the future, so will use this post to start a new Backup page…possibly also including system image backup methods.

More Tidbits: Here are some pics using a IO Crest SY-ACC25014 2.5″ IDE SATA HDD Storage Protection Box as a portable source to carry the StarTech USB 3.0 to 2.5″ SATA III Hard Drive Adapter Cable with UASP and a SSD – very handy for laptops: