Backing Up the Computer

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I need help as I have no clue on how to do this.
I have copied some of my pics onto an external hard drive that I bought.
I would like to learn how and if I can back up my pc on to my external harddrive so if my pc crashes I can have everything there. Not sure if I can back up the programs that I have on my pc to the external then onto a new laptop which I'm hoping to buy within the yr. I have xp on my pc now.
Any help with this computer stuff would be greatly appreciated. Some of you know me from the past and I've always asked questions about the pc as I am not computer illerate at all... :eek::D
This is what I was thinking of doing if I can do this. Would like to back up all that I have on my pc and then figure out how to delete everything on it but will need the program to get back onto the net with the cable company so don't want to lose that, might have the cd here but not 100% sure
Guess i need to know what cd's I need to find before I do anything.
I do get a virtual memory thing alot. I know Scarez said she is getting it all the time on her pc so we are thinking our pc's are getting ready to crash. She has had problems with hers crashing and she lost some stuff.
I want to be prepared so I don't lose anything and I have never backed up my computer.I hope this makes some sense. I know I'm going from one thing to another...LOL:D:D
I just went through all that Laurie....b/c we are in the process of purchasing a new desktop and laptop for traveling with. They all have to go back b/c some files are corrupted from XP - grrrr!! Your programs that you have should all be on discs so you are ok with them if your PC crashes. Not sure if you know - but you can also back up your email address book and bookmarks into MS word - then copy those documents over to your external harddrive.
Your external harddrive will show up under My Computer as your E drive - so click on any documents you want to save (or pictures) and copy to the E easy once you get going and so important to protect those pictures and documents!


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I got an external hard drive but my mac backs up every night with the time machine program. I have backed up the pc of my hubby's but we just use my mac for things we think need to be backed up. I make dvd's of any of his pictures that he wants backed up. I really the things like time machine and iLife and iWork that this computer have. I can work in pages and save in word doc. that way I can share with anyone.
I have each year's digital pics backed onto CD's and in the firesafe....but still back them up on the external drive - good tohave two sources, I think! I was so tempted to get a mac as I have heard they are awesome - but hubby is computer challenged, so he would have struggled with it.


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XP has a backup program but I have read that it isn't as good as a dedicated program for backing up.Some computers come with a stripped down version of Roxio or Nero media suites and there is a backup provision in both of those. I bought one put out by Acronis and I am happy with it when it works, but it doesn't always. I am not sure though if it is the program or my computer. I have the full suites of both Roxio and Nero though and I think I am going to opt for one of them now and see how it works out. I am a bit paranoid about backing up since I have lost everything by computer crashes three times over the last 10 years.
I also have an older computer -- 5 years old I think and things are starting to go haywire. I am getting a lot of pop up warnings that I don't understand and don't know where to look for info on them . I don't even know what to think about backing up my files and pictures. lol I hate being so stupid about these things and I don't have any kids around who knows this stuff.


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I started with a computer with windows xp and I was fine with it. I could wipe it out and use the cds made from the back up program that came with it to load it up again and start all over. Now I have this newer computer which has Windows Vista. I wouldn't know where to start to do any of this stuff. Butttt as far as's nice to upload them to something like Photobucket where you can always find them on any computer...just remember your pass word.
You can back up the data so that if your PC crashes, you can reinstall the data, but as for the program, you will need to reinstall that altogether. Even if you have the data on the computer, if it crashes and you are faced with the situation where you have to reformat your hard drive, you will still have to reinstall all of the software in order to be able to access the data.

If I were you, and I've been in this position before, as was my husband not too long ago, back up the data. As long as you have CD's or discs for the programs you have on your computer, you can reinstall the programs. The more important thing to have backed up is important stuff, e-mail addresses, bank records, pictures, important medical information or stuff like that.

With the external hard drive, while you are at it, make sure that if a catastrophe should happen and you'd need to replace the computer altogether, that it's compatible with other operating systems. Make sure that if necessary, there are drivers you can download to make it accessible from a newer operating system.
I also heard as far as backing up data - that the external harddrives have movable parts and COULD lose that data - however, thumb drives (memory stickes) don't have movable parts and are probably more realiable.
The new SSD's or Solid State Drives also don't have movable parts. This is a new kind of hard drive that if sometimes featured on small computers -- especially Netbooks.


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It seems like everything has a risk to it. Dell sells computers with a second hard drive in them so you can back up the entire "C" drive. An external drive will or can accomplish the same thing. It is possible that I can lose both the internal hard drives and the external hard drive, but the odds are pretty good that won't happen. I have a 4 gigabyte flash drive and a 1 gigabyte flash drive. My music files alone take up 160 gigabytes. I have a whole folder full of DVD discs with all my music files backed up on those. But I still like to run a new backup every week or two and do a complete backup of the two hard drives in my computer to the single external drive. Like I said before, after losing some pictures that I can never replace, I am paranoid about backing up. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to