Backup Software Comparison

Compare Rank Product NameDownloadReviewEditor's RatingUser RatingPriceOperating SystemFile & Folder BackupFull Disk ImageIncremental BackupScheduling
Compare SyncBackPro main windowSyncBackPro main window
SyncBackPro
3.5
5.3
$54.95 Window yes no yes yes
Compare Handy Backup main screenHandy Backup main screen
Handy Backup
4.0
5.0
$99 Window yes yes yes yes
Compare Macrium Reflect main screenMacrium Reflect main screen
Macrium Reflect Standard
3.9
5.0
$44.99 Window yes yes yes yes
Compare True Image Lite main screenTrue Image Lite main screen
True Image Lite
2.0
5.0
$29.99 Window yes no yes yes
Compare Genie Timeline Free main screenGenie Timeline Free main screen
Genie Timeline Free
3.9
5.0
Free Window yes no yes yes
Compare AceBackup main screenAceBackup main screen
AceBackup
3.2
5.0
Free Window yes no yes yes
Compare Max SyncUp main screenMax SyncUp main screen
@MAX SyncUp
3.5
4.5
Free Window yes no yes yes
Compare SyncBackFree profile overviewSyncBackFree profile overview
SyncBackFree
3.6
4.5
Free Window yes no no yes
Compare Backup Maker main screenBackup Maker main screen
BackUp Maker
3.5
4.5
Window yes no yes yes
Compare FBackupFBackup
FBackup
3.0
4.5
Free Window yes no no yes
Compare Areca main screenAreca main screen
Areca Backup
3.5
4.4
Free WindowLinux yes no yes yes
Compare GoodSync analyze changesGoodSync analyze changes
GoodSync
4.0
4.4
$29.95 WindowMacLinux yes no yes yes
Compare The ShadowProtect main menuThe ShadowProtect main menu
ShadowProtect Desktop
3.4
4.3
$89.95 Window no yes yes yes
Compare Cobian Backup main screenCobian Backup main screen
Cobian Backup
4.0
4.1
Free Window yes no yes yes
Compare The Paragon Backup & Recovery Main ScreenThe Paragon Backup & Recovery Main Screen
Paragon Backup & Recovery
4.5
4.0
$39.95 Window yes yes yes yes
Compare oopsbackup-main-screenoopsbackup-main-screen
Oops!Backup
4.0
4.0
$37 Window yes no yes yes
Compare FileFort main screenFileFort main screen
FileFort
3.5
4.0
Free Window yes no yes yes
Compare SyncBackSE main screenSyncBackSE main screen
SyncBackSE
4.3
3.7
$34.95 Window yes no yes yes
Compare Comodo Backup main screenComodo Backup main screen
Comodo Backup
1.5
3.6
Free Window yes yes yes yes
Compare The Backup tabThe Backup tab
AOMEI Backupper Standard
4.0
3.5
Free Window yes yes yes yes
Compare Retrospect Professional backup wizardRetrospect Professional backup wizard
Retrospect Professional
4.4
3.5
$119 WindowMac yes yes yes yes
Compare SmartSync main screenSmartSync main screen
SmartSync Pro
4.0
3.5
$45 Window yes no yes yes
Compare The Backup4all main menu is clear and concise.The Backup4all main menu is clear and concise.
Backup4all Professional
3.5
3.5
$49.95 Window yes no yes yes
Compare Duplicati supported cloud storageDuplicati supported cloud storage
Duplicati
4.0
3.1
Free WindowMacLinux yes no yes yes
Compare True Image 2014 "Getting Started" screenTrue Image 2014 "Getting Started" screen
True Image 2014
5.0
3.1
$49.99 Window yes yes yes yes
Compare EaseUS Todo Free main screenEaseUS Todo Free main screen
EaseUS Todo Backup Free
4.1
2.9
Free Window yes yes yes yes
Compare Nero BackItUp home screenNero BackItUp home screen
Nero BackItUp
3.9
2.8
$0 - 70/year Window yes no yes yes
Compare NovaBACKUP main screenNovaBACKUP main screen
NovaBACKUP Professional
2.0
2.7
$49.95 Window yes yes yes yes
Compare FreeFileSync main screenFreeFileSync main screen
FreeFileSync
1.0
2.7
Free Window yes no no no
Compare NTI Backup Now EZ Main screenNTI Backup Now EZ Main screen
NTI Backup Now EZ
3.9
2.5
$29.99 Window yes yes yes yes
Compare Genie Backup Manager home screenGenie Backup Manager home screen
Genie Backup Manager Home
4.2
2.3
$49.95 Window yes no yes yes
Compare The PowerBackup main screenThe PowerBackup main screen
PowerBackup
3.0
2.0
$39.95 Window yes no yes yes
Compare Backup & Recovery main screenBackup & Recovery main screen
Acronis Backup & Recovery 11.5
4.0
1.9
$89 WindowLinux yes yes yes yes
Compare Ocster main screenOcster main screen
Ocster Backup Freeware
3.0
1.0
Free Window yes no yes yes
Compare Uranium Backup main screenUranium Backup main screen
Uranium Backup
2.0
1.0
Free Window yes no yes yes
Compare The TurboBackup main screenThe TurboBackup main screen
TurboBackup
3.0
1.0
$49.95 Window yes no yes yes
Compare Argentum Backup main screenArgentum Backup main screen
Argentum Backup
1.0
1.0
$39 Window yes no no yes
Compare ABC Backup main screenABC Backup main screen
ABC Backup
1.0
1.0
$29.95 Window yes no yes yes
Compare The Paragon main screen.The Paragon main screen.
Paragon Backup & Recovery Free
3.0
0
Free Window no yes no yes
Compare Ghost main screenGhost main screen
Norton Ghost
3.5
0
$69.99 Window yes yes yes yes
Compare NTI Backup Now: Drive-based backupNTI Backup Now: Drive-based backup
NTI Backup Now 5 Advanced
3.5
0
$63.99 Window yes yes yes yes
Compare ViceVersa Plus Comparison WindowViceVersa Plus Comparison Window
ViceVersa Plus
2.5
0
$34.95 Window yes no no yes

What Is Backup Software?

Backup software is used to protect your computer from data loss.  It does this by creating copies of your files, which can be restored in the event of a disaster.  Data loss can occur for any number of reasons, from an accidentally deleted file, to a hard drive crash, to viruses, and more.  Backup software can automatically backup your data, so you don’t have to remember to copy your files to a separate hard drive.  You just install it, set it up, and then forget about it, as it runs your backup jobs on a regular basis.

Backing up is important, no doubt about it.  It’s not a matter of if your hard drive crashes – it’s when.  Backup software can help protect your precious files when disaster strikes.

Who Should Use Backup Software?

Everybody that cares about their data should be backing it up regularly.  People that have family photos and other important documents should make use of backup software.  It’s also important for businesses to backup their data.  If customer data is lost due to unforeseen circumstances, it can cause the company to lose money, credibility, and in many cases, go out of business.

What to Look for in Backup Software

It’s important to choose backup software that is easy to use, since nobody wants to be fumbling with their backups when they’ve suffered data loss.  You should also look for backup software that allows scheduling, so backups can be run automatically.  With scheduled backups, you can go about your daily life, without having to remember to backup your files.

The ability to run incremental-type backups is another important feature to look for.  Incremental backups only save changes since the last backup, thereby saving hard drive space.  This also cuts down on the time to run the backup, although it increases the time to restore it.

Where Can Backup Software Backup To?

Backup software can backup to a variety of locations, but it usually depends on the features of the program.  This almost always includes external hard drives, USB flash drives, and network locations.  Some backup software can burn your backups to CD/DVD/Blu-ray discs.

Some software takes it a step further, with the ability to backup to online locations such as FTP and SFTP.  With the popularity of online backup services, some backup software can also backup to the cloud, such as Amazon S3 and Google Drive.  Others offer their own proprietary cloud storage, which is typically offered as a subscription with a monthly fee attached. It’s optional, and there only for users that wish to use it.

More Features to Look For

File & Folder Backup: Can the software backup files and folders?

Full Disk Imaging: Some backup software can make full disk images of your hard drive, which can restore your system to the exact state it was in when the backup was made.

Incremental: A type of backup that only backs up changes since the last backup.  Incremental backups save hard drive space.  However, they take longer to restore, since the backup software has to process all the previous incrementals in the chain.

Differential: A type of backup that only backs up changes since the last full backup.  Differential backups restore faster than incremental type backups, since only two backup media are needed to complete the restore.

Scheduling: Scheduling the backup, so that it runs automatically without user intervention.

Compression: Compressing the backup can save hard drive space, but increases the time to perform the backup.

Encryption: Encryption protects the backup from unauthorized users accessing the data.  A passphrase is used to decrypt the backup, which will be needed at restore time.

Email Notifications: Some backup software can send email notifications, letting you know the status of the backups.  This is particularly useful if the backup software encounters errors.

Pre/Post Commands: With some backup software, you can run commands before (and after) the backup is scheduled to run.  This can be used to execute common computer tasks, such as shutting the computer down or ejecting a CD drive.

Priority Setting: Does the backup software let you adjust the CPU priority, so it doesn’t slow down your computer while backups are running?

Speed Limiting: Some software lets you control how fast it backs up to network locations, since this can sometimes overwhelm your available bandwidth.

Synchronization: Synchronization keeps an exact copy of files in two locations.  For instance, you can sync a folder between your work computer and your home computer at the end of each day, to keep them identical.

Validation: Some backup software can validate your backups, to ensure the data that is stored in the backups is the same as the original data.  Although uncommon, sometimes the backup files get corrupted.  Validation ensures that the data is valid.