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Backup NOW! Deluxe 3

BackupNOW! Deluxe 3 is a high-quality backup program that can be used to perform regular full, differential or incremental backups to DVDR media.

Cannot Backup & Mirror

Originally, before I bought Beyond Compare, I had assumed that I would be able to set up two separate backup jobs (within BackupNOW) to perform both the archiving to DVDR in addition to mirroring to another drive. It would be nice to have a single program accomplish both important tasks. Unfortunately, BackupNOW Deluxe 3 (and many other backup programs available) will not let you do this. The problem comes down to the way that the programs determine the age of file for the purposes of an incremental backup.

Let's say that you are performing a simple mirror (ie. copying all subdirectories to another hard drive) every night with the backup software. In addition, you are using the backup software to archive (via incremental backup) the same directories of files to a DVDR a couple times a week.

When the backup program performs the daily copy (for the mirror), it sets the archive bit on these files. Then, when it comes to the bi-weekly incremental backup, the software will see the recent archive bit set and assume that the files have already been backed up. This is not what you want! For any redundancy to work, the two backup sets must be completely independent of each other.

When evaluating other backup programs that might accomplish both tasks simultaneously, you should ensure that they allow multiple backups across the same files.

A key feature to look for is how incremental backups are done -- do they only use the archive bit?. I did not find any software that accomplished this, and so I simply solved it by purchasing a small program, Beyond Compare, to perform the mirror task. I still use BackupNOW Deluxe 3 for the main incremental archiving to DVDR.

Other issues with Backup NOW Deluxe

Besides the archive bit issue (which is only an issue if do multiple backup sets on the same files or use multiple programs), I have encountered two other minor annoyances:

  • Erroneous reporting of "unfinished jobs" by the scheduler.
  • No way to see what files have changed in an incremental or differential set.
  • BackupNOW Deluxe counts and labels 2 "discs" for every DVD-R.
    The first "disc" is in the order of 4.0 GB, while the second is the remainder (around 0.5 GB). This is done to preserve compatibility with operating systems earlier than Windows XP (with NTFS) which didn't allow file sizes over 4 GB in size.

Backup NOW Deluxe 3
Cost: U$69.99
Trial? Yes. 30 day.
Vendor: Newtech Infosystems
Prices as of November 2004


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