Before you back up

Consider these best practices before you define and run your first back up:

Schedule back ups when you know your computer will be turned on.

Your computer must be turned on and Windows must be running at the time a back up occurs. If not, any scheduled back ups are skipped until the computer is turned on again. You then are prompted to run the missed back up.

Use a secondary hard disk as your backup destination.

You should store recovery points on a hard disk other than your primary hard disk C. It helps ensure that you can recover your system in the event that your primary hard disk fails.

Consider using external drives as your backup destination.

Using an external drive makes your backup data more portable. Should you need to remove your critical data from a particular location, you can quickly grab an external drive on your way out the door.

See About Offsite Copy.

Give nicknames to your external drives to help you easily identify them

You can assign a nickname to each external drive to help keep track of where your backup data is stored for each computer you back up. Because drive letters can change each time you unplug and plug an external drive into your computer, a nickname ensures that you can always know which drive you are using when you are running Norton Ghost.

Using a nickname does not change the volume label of a drive. A nickname simply helps you identify the drive when using Norton Ghost.

And the nickname sticks with the drive, so that if you plug the drive into a second computer running another copy of Norton Ghost, the nickname appears.


You might also consider placing a sticky label on each drive that matches the nickname that you have assigned.

See Using nicknames for external drives.

Use Offsite Copy

Use Offsite Copy to copy your latest recovery points to either a portable storage device or a remote server. By copying recovery points to a portable hard disk, you can then take a copy of your data with you when you leave the office.

See About Offsite Copy.

Run back ups on a regular and frequent basis.

When you define your back ups, schedule them to run frequently so that you have recovery points that span at least the last two months.

See Defining a drive-based backup.

Keep personal data on a separate drive than the drive on which Windows and your software programs are installed.

You should keep your operating system and software programs separate from your own data. It speeds the creation of recovery points and reduces the amount of information that needs to be restored. For example, use the C drive to run Windows and to install and run software programs. Use the D drive to create, edit, and store personal files and folders.

For other drive management solutions, go to the Symantec Web site at the following URL:

Verify the recovery point after you create it to ensure that it is stable.

When you define a backup, you should select the option to verify the recovery point to ensure that the recovery point can be used to recover lost data.

More Information

About choosing a backup type

About selecting a backup destination

Editing a backup schedule

About choosing a backup type