One Of The Best Backup Utilities I've Seen For A Long Time


I don't like backup programs that store their backups in a proprietary format.  The added encryption and compression may be useful, but I'd rather be confident that I can access those backups with any program I like, and not be forced to browse my backups with a specific restore utility.  

I therefore back up to an external USB hard disk, and also to another internal hard disk in my PC.  You probably do something similar too, and you probably use a standard file copy program to do it.  Windows Explorer, maybe, or a similar utility that's designed for taking backups and quickly amending the backup if one of the source files changes.

There's even a command-line program (XCOPY) built into Windows that can do this, though it can be tricky to use.

Almost 3 years ago I recommended that you check out a promising new piece of backup freeware called Bvckup (as I said at the time, think of the A as being upside down).  The original program has matured hugely in the last 30 months or so, and is now a truly excellent piece of software. It's also up to version 2.

To use Bvckup 2, you'll need Windows XP or later (I used 8.0).  It's a 1.5 MB download from and is malware-free according to VirusTotal and Web of Trust.

After installing it, you'll need to set up 1 or more backup jobs.  Just specify the source folder, and a destination folder on your backup drive.  The destination folder needs to be empty.  You can then specify whether the backup job runs on demand, or continuously in the background.

In my tests, Bvckup 2 is blisteringly fast.  Having copied 22 GB of files to a backup folder, I then added one small new file to the source set and re-ran the job.  By the time I'd clicked the Go button, the program had located the new file and updated the backup.  You can't get better than that.




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Have been using Bvckup 2 for a month now and must say, IT'S FANTASTIC. not only amazingly fast, but just works, with a simple interface and good notifications to the user. definite 5 star product.
Thanks Gizmo's (and esp. Rob) for another useful recommendation.

According to an email I just received from the program's author, the program will remain permanently free of charge for those who don't want "premium" features such as support. Which is good news.

Wow that must suck when I got my new update instead of having all my stuff backed up it erased EVERYTHING!!!! It made me two mad I still don't have everything I can't believe it erased everything I'm still mad I hate iPads but at the same time I love it arrrr!!!!


Are you talking about your update of your OS on Ipad or the backup program? If you lost everything during an OS update its probably hidden on your ipad somewhere. Normally an apple store will help you with this at no charge.

good luck Bob

Just to clarify - the latest beta will remain perpetually available and free. Production versions that will follow will be paid software.

That said, betas have been stable and of a production quality from the start of public beta in November 2013. They are routinely used by hundreds of people in production environments and home setups.


Wonder what the final price will be. Presently, I use Yadis ( which is a free real time backup that works silently in the background and offers an essential (at least for me) key feature - versioning - which Bvckup lacks. I don't know if Yadis is faster or slower than Bvckup but it is certainly fast.

The web site says that the final price will be $20, with discounts for beta users. But Alexander, the program's author, has also said that there will be a free, unsupported version forever too.

Thanks, Rob. This is correct. The latest beta will remain perpetually available as freeware.

Thanks for the article Rob. I need to install a local backup for my new PC and this comes at a great time. I have to agree with your first paragraph. Spot on and it's one reason I automatically exclude programs that encrypt my files locally.
I've tried about a dozen programs and picked FreeFileSync. but will give Bvckup 2 a try.

Another vote for Karen's Replicator. Used it for years and now use it with W7 64 bit. Wonderful to look at backups and see exactly what is there. Same titles, same file size as the original.

I'm with you, Aretas. Still the simplest, most reliable program. You can see exactly what it's backed up.

Bvckup 2 is a realtime backup program -- or at least, that seems to be how it's intended to be used. It's best for backing up data -- documents, photos, music, so forth -- rather than your complete system. As Rob says, it's blisteringly fast, particularly for updates, and one reason for that is its use of some extremely advanced "delta" functionality that means it genuinely backs up the change you made to your file, rather than the changed file. So having pointed it at your precious files and given it a target to store backups on, you can forget about it. The interface is minimalistic -- clean and easy to work with. I have tested many realtime backup programs -- both free and commercial -- and Bvckup was the only one that ticked all the boxes, for me. Bvckup 2 has replaced its predecessor with ease and feels faster and more efficient still, and the developer is responsive and friendly. I recommend it highly. But I'm not sure how much longer it's going to stay free.

I love GFI BackUp (free). It doesn't store backups in a proprietary format. Easy to use. I use it for many years.
You can't beat GFI Backup!

Not to stir up a bee's nest, but a lot of you are waaaay over-concerned about viruses <_< In all my time downloading one thing after the other, I've yet to come across something infected. I've even stopped using antivirus (just an occasional scan with MBAM) and I'm still fine. Especially things like WOT really aren't as good as they seem.

Have to agree with that Faziri. The only hints I've ever come across of a virus has been when downloading from suspicious websites. If you use trusted site you will never have a problem. However, My anvtirus has caught maybe 20 viruses over the years. But with the latest Cryptovirus (Crytolocker?) which locks your files up unless you pay some hacker for the unlock code, I don't know how anyone would feel safe without an AV program. Then again, not sure any AV will protect against the Cryptolocker. a link to some info in laymans terms.

HitmanPro "CryptoGuard" also claims to protect against this type of ransomware.

It's included in the v2.5 beta version of HitmanPro Alert which monitors for "man-in-the-browser" trojans.

No idea how well they work ... I've had Alert installed for a few weeks now and it's been utterly silent other than a green toaster that pops out every time I start Firefox to tell that I'm protected. No impact on resources so I'm happy to keep it on board as I think they're a fairly solid vendor of AV software.

thank you,
great to know. wonder if it actually works?

I've used FreeFileSync for several years and really like it but this new bundling that they've got into has put me off them quite a lot even though I've so far not had anything unwanted installed by it.

I've been trying out the sync module in FreeCommander ... it seems to work ok, but I find the interface a little confusing and have unintentionally deleted a few things with it.

I'll give Create a try.

I've used FreeFileSync too. after testing many alternatives found FFS to be the best for my purposes. I will give Bvckup 2 a try though

I used to use FreeFileSync, but with a large number of files it took forever estimating how much time the backup would take! I now use Create Synchronicity ( which is small, portable, and fast. It hasn't been updated for over a year, does not have a fancy interface, but it does what it's supposed to to in an easy and fast manner.

When I went to download FreeFileSync from SourceForge, normally a safe source, I was given the normal choice of ways to install: BOTH involved installing Conduit.
Conduit hi-jacked its way onto my computer about a month ago, and I had to completely strip the hard disk and re-install all my programs. Fortunately I had used Paragon Drive Copy to create my backup on a separate USB disk.

Avoid Conduit at all costs

I've never had trouble removing Conduit. Just strip it out of Appdata, ProgramData, your browser's profile and the registry. Reinstalling everything is overkill. Tools like Everything ( are very handy for everything, including finding the last traces of stuff you need to get rid of.

Replying to BallyIrish

The program I have recommended is not an image backup program.

I would suggest that you do as i have done. Keep two hard drives (or partition your hard drive into two partitions), one for all your operating system and software, the other for all your data.

Use an imaging program for the first (you only need to burn a new image when you add or update software - I do it every 3-4 months which also captures any software automatic updates which may have happened since last burn) and use a backup program to back up your data drive (I do a daily back up on a second HD in my computer and a weekly on an external HD).

I use Macrium for the image and Replicator for the data backups - and have been using them for several years. Very happy.

Hope it works for you as well.

Been using Cobian for years ( 100% freeware. Does full, incremental, differential; volume shadow copy; flexible scheduling; non-proprietary formats - no compression or zip or 7 zip (and it won't compress already compressed formats such as MP3 unless you want it to); no encryption or 3 types of aes encryption; exclusions; pre- and post- backup events. It can backup to an ftp location; notify results via email; and more. The only downside is that there is no built-in restore process - it doesn't build a catalog of files and you may have to look through a few places if you zip and also have it configured for lots of incrementals.

Cobian's no more, it's up for sale.

Author is trying to sell the source code and probably no future development. But it's still available.

This Bvckup 2 may be good but according to the site it does NOT do compressed or encrypted backups. Thus, this may use much more space when saving to an external drive. If this program addresses this concern please reply in post. Also, is there a manual on "How to use this program"?

This does not look like it will be freeware for long. I notice the site says:
All beta releases are completely free
14 day trial once released
$20 to buy for home use
Dedicated licensing and support for enterprise use

In addition, WIN7 has a System Image backup which runs with it as well as a defragmenter. If one of these other programs were used how would one combine/achieve the WIN7 functions with these others?

Thank you Rob. Looks very good to me. You have the eye of an eagle and a heart of pure gold!

Here's another to test: AOMEI Backupper - free and excellent.

I've used a lot of imagers, and AOMEI beats them all! It has all the features the others hav,e, is 10x smaller and blazing fast.
(not to be confused with a plain file copier like Bvckup)