posted by Thom Holwerda on Sat 25th Dec 2010 17:38 UTC
IconFirst of all: the entire OSNews team would like to wish you a very merry Christmas. Even if you're not religious, there's always porn on the internet, right? Anywho, these wishes are a bit tardy, but that's because I've been fighting a battle with my computer the past few days trying to find a way to record Minecraft footage so I could make a Christmas wish from inside my creations - a losing battle, so it would seem. So, for Christmas, I have two OSNews Asks items for you to ponder. First, help me record Minecraft footage. Second, and this is of more practical use to myself and probably others as well, help me to set up an automatic backup solution that backs up the contents of one folder on an external hard drive to another external drive.

Recording Minecraft

First, Minecraft. I want to record a full screen Minecraft session. The most common way to do this is to use Fraps, but sadly, Fraps costs money, and I'm not going to pay for something I'll only use once. The free version is limited to 30 second recordings, which is pointless. I'm sure Fraps is awesome, though - I'm hearing a lot of good things about it.

My second option was to use Camtasia Studio 7.1. Camtasia is an absolutely awesome application, with a built-in multitrack audio and video editor, transitions, captions, and all that stuff. It's perfect, doesn't lag Minecraft while recording, is easy to use, and supports many codecs. It has one flaw, however; a flaw which is, well, rather problematic: it can't record Minecraft. It does actually record, but just shows a black screen with the mouse pointer swooshing from left to right. I'm assuming this is a Java issue (Minecraft is Java), but can't find a solution.

I've tried loads of other tools, and they all suck for one reason or another - WeGame, Taksi, HyperCam, CamStudio (insert co-ed joke here), and god (it's okay, it's his big day today) knows what else, and they all ended in fail. Any help here is greatly appreciated (running Minecraft on Windows 7).

Folder back-up

My job is to be a freelance translator - so I translate for clients from the comforts of my own home. This means I have a considerable amount of important documents sitting on my server, which need to be backed up properly. Since these documents are all under NDA (default practice in the translation business), I can't use any of these fancy internet-based storage solutions like DropBox.

My server runs Windows 7 - it will remain that way, so don't bother trying to convert me to something else. The folder in question is located on an external hard drive, connected via USB, and its size is a measly 225 MB - the beauty of just holding documents. My preferred option would be to have an automated solution - without using any paid-for applications - that backs up the folder in question from the external hard drive to an 8GB USB drive I have lying around. This way, when I need to visit a client or want to work away from home, I can just take the 8GB USB drive with me. When I get home, I plug the drive back in. As I'm typing this, I'm realising that the taking-it-with-me-thing makes it a whole lot more complicated, since the sync would need to be two-way. If this can be done - perfect. If not - taking it with me is not vital; I can always just transfer the relevant documents to my laptop if I leave the house.

Preferably, we'd use nothing but tools available in Windows 7 Ultimate. I'm sure someone clever can come up with something using Volume Shadow Copy or whatever, which might be useful to all of us.

Merry Christmas to all!

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