PCs don’t have an endless life, and unfortunately, we depend on them for saving all of our important data but PCs do get corrupt, and hard drive crashing is also a very normal thing, so it’s sensible to back up our data to protect it from such events of misfortune. Thankfully, there are many backup software available that will let you create a complete backup of all your important data to an external hard drive or to the cloud storage. Although, most of these tools are paid, but there are some free software or plans as well. You just need to decide whether the data you want to backup is worth paying for or not.
We created this list of best backup software, including software of every type to accommodate different needs. You just need to find the one that fits your needs perfectly and give it a try.
1. Acronis Backup for PC
Acronis Backup is a feature rich backup software offering features to die for. Although, it offers many backup programs for individuals, businesses and even backup of servers, but we are only going to review Acronis Backup for PC. It is a paid software with a 30-day fully featured free trial (requires you to open an account to use). Acronis will create a full backup of your system to an external drive that can be easily customized. You can also save the data on the same hard drive by creating a separate partition and protecting it with Acronis. If the hard drive gets corrupted, you will still be able to recover data from it that you backed up.
One of its main feature is True Image of your hard drive. With this feature, Acronis will create an Image of your whole hard drive, including all the data, OS, and system and application settings. This Image can be restored to another hard drive or the same drive with just few clicks. This means you can literally copy your PC’s whole software to a different hardware without messing anything up.
Apart from storage on physical devices, Acronis also lets you create a backup or True Image over their secured Cloud storage service. However, you will have to buy the cloud storage space separately. Although, it seems a bit complicated software, but it makes backup and restoring a few clicks thing.
Key Features: Full PC Image backup and restore, Automatic scheduled backup, Backup over same hard drive and Cloud backup.
Supported File Systems: FAT16/32, NTFS, Linux SWAP
Pricing: Free trial and after that, $89/year. Cloud Storage can be bought for $179 / 1 TB.
Compatibility: Windows 10, 8.1, 8, 7, XP
CrashPlan is an all round backup software that will satisfy the needs of most people. Both its pricing and features are worth considering, and it even offers a free plan. It will let you backup files to an external storage drive, any other computer on your network and to their online storage with unlimited space. Furthermore, it also encrypts all the data backed up for maximum security.
In its free plan, you will get free unlimited backup to external drives or other computers over your network. All the data will be encrypted with 128-bit encryption and once a day, your data will be synced to ensure it is updated.
But, if you are serious about backing up your data and want some other amazing features, then you can get them all for $55.99/year. In paid plan, you get everything available in free plan plus unlimited online storage over CrashPlan’s safe servers. Your data will be protected with 448-bit encryption (good luck breaking that!) and your data will be synced every minute. As your data is also available online now, you can access it from anywhere using CrashPlan mobile app or web interface.
Key Features: Unlimited Storage, storage to other computers over the network and 448-bit encryption.
Pricing: Free with limited features, $59.99/year for 1 computer and $149.99 /year for up to 10 computers.
Compatibility: Windows 10, 8.1, 8, 7, XP, up to Mac OS X 10.10 and Linux
3. O&O AutoBackup 5
If the above powerful backup solutions seem a bit overpriced or too much for your needs, then you might like to try out a simple backup solution like O&O AutoBackup. This software doesn’t offer many features or advanced security, but it does a well job of basic backing up and syncing at a low price of just $29.95 with life-time access.
When it comes to features, you can backup all your hard drive data to any external storage device just by plugging in and confirming. That is pretty much it when it comes to backing up files, there is no cloud storage service, you will have to depend on your own physical storage devices.
The backed up data will be synced whenever the external storage device is connected to the PC. This ensures all your backed up data stays updated. You can also customize which data to backup and when to backup. The backup saved on the external storage device can be easily navigated and tweaked even without O&O AutoBackup 5.
Key Features: Simple interface, Automatic backup and sync and low price.
Price: Free trial with a lifetime license for $29.95/one PC.
Compatibility: Windows Vista, 7, 8, 8.1 and 10
4. Paragon Backup & Recovery 15 Home
This is again one of the best backup software that is quite feature rich and also comes at a cheap price as compared to its competitors. It offers full control over backups and makes recovery a snap even in situations of corrupt system. You can easily specify which data to back up, including individual data, partitions or the whole hard drive.
The data can be saved to external storage devices or another computer connected to your network. Restoring process is also same and can be easily customized to restore specific data or the whole backup. It can also create an Image of your Hard disk, including OS & its settings and all apps & their settings, making it easy to move everything to a new system.
It has a new feature called Recovery Media Builder 3.0 that will create a bootable recovery of your system. In case your system corrupts, you can boot from this recovery to recover data. You can also mount the backed up drive as network drive to access from other systems.
Key Features: Customizable Backup and restore options, Create full System Image and create bootable media of your System.
Supported File Systems: NTFS (v1.2, v3.0, v3.1), FAT16, FAT32, Linux Swap.
Pricing: Free 30 trial and a paid version for $39.95 with lifetime access for 1 PC.
Compatibility: Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1 and 10.
5. AOMEI Backupper
AOMEI Backupper is a decent backup software with both free and paid options. You can create backup of your Windows and all its settings to revert to it when required, and you get full control over what to backup. You can backup individual files/folders, partitions and disks. A backup schedule can be created along with full backup sync to ensure all your files are properly backed up.
While creating a backup the software will not mess with any of the process and you can keep using all the apps and the system without worrying. The data can be backed on external storage devices or PC’s own hard drive and you can also save it to NAS (Network-Attached Storage).
Its free version offers all the backup and restore options, but it lacks some side features, such as disk space management, system clone, Command Line backup and Backup Image merge. The professional version offers all these features that Standard version lacks. There is also a Server version which will let you backup data from data servers, perfect for businesses.
Key Features: Full backup options for free, full control over backup & restore and Create full system clone.
Pricing: Free version will limited features and a Professional version for a price of $49 for lifetime for 2 PCs.
Compatibility: Windows 10, 8.1, 8, 7, XP
Cloud Storage Backup Services
If you only want to backup documents, images, videos or some important files then you must go for Cloud Storage services because they provide great accessibility and syncing across various devices, plus they are either free or are available at very low cost. Although, they are not official backup apps to backup your PC data or provide dedicated solution, but they do a great job of backing up and syncing important data. You will have to add the files you want to backup manually in most cases, so keep these hiccups in mind.
6. Google Drive
Google Drive is one of the best cloud storage service you could find. It comes with your Google Account which most of the people already have and it integrates well with other Google services. With Google Drive, you get free space of 15 GB to which you can use to upload all your data such as photos, audio files, videos, documents, etc.
It is a shared storage with your Gmail and Google docs, etc., so keep that in mind while filling up the space. You can pay for extra space for just $2/month for 100 GB space. You data is accessible from all major mobile and desktop platforms and even on the web.
Key Features: 15 GB free storage and integration with Google services.
Pricing: Free 15 GB and $2/month for 100 GB and $9.99/month for 1 TB space
Compatibility: Web, Windows, Mac OS X, Android and iOS
Dropbox is a simple to use cloud storage service with powerful feature and compatibility. You can easily move files to the dropbox folder in your PC and they will be uploaded and synced over every device. You get free storage of just 2 GB that can be increased to up to 18 GB by referring other people to Dropbox.
It covers wide range of platforms, which makes sure you get to access your data from almost everywhere. If the free space is not enough, you can get 1 TB space for $10/month.
Key Features: Multi-platform support and very simple to use
Pricing: Up to 18 GB of space achievable for free and 1TB space for $10/month, which can be billed for $99/year.
Compatibility: Web, Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Kindle Fire and BlackBerry
8. Microsoft OneDrive
Just like Google Drive integrates with Google products, OneDrive integrates with Microsoft products. It is built in to Windows 8, 8.1 and 10, and you can save all your office online documents into it. You will get free storage space of 15 GB and its paid plans are also quite cheap where 1 TB space only costs $6.99/month.
If you are a Windows user with at least one more Windows based device, then you should definitely try out Microsoft OneDrive.
Key Features: Integrates with Microsoft products, Cheap pricing and 15 GB of free space
Pricing: Free 15 GB space and paid storage costing $1.99/month for 100 GB, $3.99/month for 200 GB and $6.99/month for 1 TB space.
Compatibility: Windows, Mac OS X , Android, iOS, Windows Phone
Box is specifically created for businesses, although it doesn’t all individual accounts, but its features work best for business use. There main focus is on privacy and collaboration, you can easily share the uploaded files with other people (employees, preferably) and even add comments and specify who can access data and who can’t.
You will get 10 GB of free space with your Box account and you can get 100 GB of space for $6/month. For individuals, it might be a bit pricy, but for businesses it offers unlimited storage for up to 3 users just for $17/month. If you want to backup your data and also want to collaborate on it, then Box is the way to go.
Key Features: Collaboration tools with extra security of Data, All business related features available and unlimited storage package.
Pricing: Free 10 GB space and $6/month for 100 GB and $17/month for unlimited space for up to 3 users.
Compatibility: Web, Windows, Mac OS X, Android, iOS, Windows Phone, BlackBerry
If you are Apple products user, then you might like to use iCloud for backing up your data. It offers complete solutions for iOS, Mac OS X and even Windows. However, it is only limited to these operating systems, making it a bit limited service. You can get a free space of 5 GB that can be increased 1 TB for $9.99/month.
While opting for iCloud just keep in mind that you will be only able to access your files from Apple devices or Windows for desktop.
Features: Integrates with Apple devices and offers multiple packages
Pricing: Free 5 GB space and 50 GB extra space for $0.99/month, 200 GB space for $2.99/month and 1 TB space for $9.99/month
Compatibility: iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac OS X, and Windows PC
SEE ALSO: 21 Tips To Speed Up Your PC
The above mentioned backup software and services have different features, some are very feature rich but expensive and others offer reliable backup features at a good cost or even free. The Cloud storage options are also worth considering, being able to access your important data from anywhere is a blessing of its own.