Personal Computer World

November 16, 2006

by Karl Foster

Acronis True Image 10 Home backup software

Now with Vista support, Acronis’ backup application promises more than ever

It’s barely six months since we looked at version 9 of Acronis’ backup software, but it appears the developer has been mighty busy coding new features, perhaps the most significant of which is timely support for Vista.

For those unacquainted with Acronis True Image 10 Home, it’s a user-friendly application that enables you to schedule and perform backups of everything on the computer, from program settings, through specific file types, to the whole system.

A snapshot-style function can create an image of the entire system drive, compress and save it to another disk, or across multiple discs. A built-in rescue-media builder is used to create a recovery CD from which to boot and re-deploy everything. This is not so much system restore as system rebirth.

Aside from Vista support, version 10 introduces specific tools for backing up Outlook emails, contacts, calendar entries and all, the means to store program-specific settings, which could save a world of pain if you’re an alpha-type who likes to heavily customise your software, and a feature that enables you to create backups of specific files without actually launching the application.

Also new are facilities to save archives over FTP and set up email notification to tell you that an operation has completed. As ever, archive files can be compressed as they’re created to save on disk space, and split over several volumes if saving to, for example, optical media.

A wizard guides you through the process, offering clearly explained instructions for the various options along the way. And when the backup is created, you can delve into it to recover individual files, a password option prevents others from doing the same.

Acronis True Image 10 Home is a screamingly simple solution — easy enough for beginners to drive, and yet flexible enough for those with more demanding needs. Considering the peace of mind afforded, the asking price seems negligible.