How to Back up Hard Disk to CD

Level of difficulty: Easy

Backups are created to make sure data can be retrieved in the case of system failure. They are used to reconstruct the computer at the point where the copies were created. These can be placed in a separate hard disk, a separate file partition, an external hard drive, or an online service. Backups can also be saved on optical discs such as CDs.

Materials Needed:
- Computer
- hard disk
- CD burner
- blank CDs
Step 1
Purchase blank CDs. The common blank CD can store up to 700Mb of data. Make sure that there are enough discs to hold all of the data to back-up. Users can also choose between recordable (CD-R) and rewritable CDs (CD-RW). CD-Rs can only have data written on it once while CD-RWs can have data erased and written on it repeatedly.
Step 2
Some users simply want to back up data files. These can be burned straight to CDs using any simple burning program. Files and directories can be saved as a whole in the blank disc.
Step 3
Backup software can be used to create disk images out of the hard disk. This file format allows the configuration settings of the hard disk to be saved, along with the directory and the files stored. Most of these programs can also be used to create a recovery disk that can be booted from DOS to restore the system.
Step 4
Launch the chosen program. The application’s entry can be found in the Start Menu or via a desktop icon. Open the program window and begin configuration of the backup process.
Step 5
Choose the backup format. Most back-up programs allow users to choose the format the copied data will be saved in. Several compression methods can be used so that the information can be easily stored. Common methods include TIB and ZIP file formats. Other files can also be saved as simple data files.
Step 6
Choose data to backup. Select the parts of the hard disk to be backed up in a particular blank CD. Since this can take more than one disc, make sure to label each disc accordingly. Users can also set the title for each disk so the information can be retrieved easily.
Step 7
Create the backup. Make sure the blank CD is already placed in the disk drive. Some software allows the backups to span more than one CD. Continue inserting blank CDs until the project is complete.
Step 8
Maintain consistent backups. Data stored in a computer tends to change over time. So that the computer can be recovered properly, users need to continue updating backups. Some backup programs allow users to update backups by only copying new or changed data.