Incremental versus full backup ?


Blue Max

How do we create a new backup set in Vista Backup versus continuing an
incremental backup?

In our case, we backup to a removable hard drive. As such, we turn Vista
Backup OFF when the drive is not inserted and manually start a backup when
the drive is inserted and we desire a backup. Unfortunately, we are
apparently lost on some important details and usually get unexpected
results, such as a new backup when we only wanted to append an incremental
backup. This leads to a few quesitons:

FIRST, what is the procdure for creating a new full backup set with a new
date for the same computer?

SECOND, what is the procedure for simply continuing to append or update an
existing backup? How do we change backup settings, but then continue to
append the same backup?

THIRD, it appears that a new backup is first full and then incremental.
Does Vista Backup need to be turned on to catch and log modifications while
the media drive is removed or can we turn off the backup program between
backups in case we insert other non-backup media.

FOURTH, doesn't an incremental backup just keep growing in size? Our backup
folder on the backup drive appears to be considerably larger than the
combined drives it is backing up. Or is Vista deleting the old files from
previous sessions once the new version of the modified files are backed up?

FIFTH, when the backup program is running, with backup media in the drive,
does it backup on some kind of a schedule or continuously? Why don't we
have control over this except to turn Vista Backup OFF or ON?

SIXTH, the backup program is forcing a backup of our system drive (Drive
C:). We cannot change this option, so what is it backing up on the system
drive? Is a a partial or full backup of that drive?

SEVENTH, what if we want to maintain an ongoing backup of a special drive on
the same computer? Do we have to change the settings back and forth each
time we back up different combinations of drives? What if we want to back
up an individual folder versus the whole drive?

Thank you for any help.
The Blue

John Hanley

To make a new backup set, I think you choose Backup Files from the Backup
and Restore Window....every couple of months, I delete all my old backups
and start over; mostly I just let the Automatic Backup do its thing once per
week. I set that schedule in Backup and Restore. I do not believe Vista
deletes old backups or old incremental backups; you have to do that
yourself. I have a 160 GB external drive and it usually manages about two
months before I have to delete old ones; my current backup set is dated
December 6th last.

I once found the flow chart for Vista's incremental vs full backup logic,
and it can be seen at:

Hope this will be helpful; cheers....

Blue Max

Thank you, John, I appreciate your suggestions. I will also take a look at
the link to the logic diagram.



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