What Program Should You Use To Sync an External Hard Drive?
External hard drives are still a popular choice for backing up the data stored on our computers. They’re incredibly cheap nowadays, which makes them an affordable alternative. They are also simple to use, which is tempting for the less tech savvy among us. If you decide to use an external hard drive to back up your data, however, it’s a good idea to sync it to your computer.
How Do I Sync My Backup Files Between My Computer and External Hard Drive?
The easiest way to create a backup is, of course, to simply copy and paste the files you want to keep safe onto the hard drive. To do this, all you need to do is connect the external hard drive to your computer through the USB port and start copying and pasting to your heart’s content.
If you use Windows, you’ll find that there’s an inbuilt backup wizard available to help you and to make syncing your backup files incredibly easy. You can find it in the Control Panel. Its advantages include the ability to create a system image from which you can recover your entire machine, including the operating system.
If you don’t use Windows, or you find the wizard difficult to use, there are other alternatives. Many people recommend Time Machine for a Mac because it makes restoring files very easy, while others recommend Syncback for its free version or Robocopy for its simplicity. Beyond Compare is sometimes suggested because of its powerful folder syncing, which can come in handy especially for music collections. WD Smartware keeps track of everything for you and does incremental when you plug your external hard drive back in and syncs automatically.
What To Bear In Mind When Syncing An External Hard Drive
Though cheap and easy to use, external hard drives are not the most secure method of backing up your data and there are several precautions you should take when using them. Firstly, they are easy to slip into a pocket so there’s always a risk that they could be stolen, so you’ll want to make sure you’ve used a strong password to protect the documents stored on it. Secondly, they are vulnerable to damage, whether because you accidentally drop them or spill your soda over them or because of fire, flood or weather damage. It’s a good idea to use at least two external hard drives to be sure your data is extra safe. Thirdly, because your external hard drive is at risk from all the same damage as your computer, it’s best to store them in a different location so the same damage can’t affect them both.
Most importantly, if you use cloud storage you can relax and let your cloud storage provider do the work for you. When you attach your hard drive to your pc, your cloud storage software will automatically sync that external hard drive to the locations you’ve set it to do so. You can find comparison tables for the best available below: