LIUtilities’s WinBackup is a backup program for Windows 98/NT/ME/2000 and XP. Despite it’s low cost ($50 boxed, $30 for a downloadable version) and small size (under 2 Mb) WinBackup has a ton of features including built in CD/DVD burning support and 256-bit encryption.
WinBackup is easy to use, it has a Windows-Explorer style interface that allows you to navigate your computer and select the files you want to back up. Once you select the files you want to backup just press the ‘Run Backup’ button and your done! It also has a wizard that is great for first time users. WinBackup has a built in search feature, which allows to quickly locate files you may want to backup.
Restoring your archives is equally as easy. Just double click the archive and WinBackup launches. From there you can select what files you want to restore. You can also tell it to restore files to an alternate location if you don’t want to replace your existing file.
WinBackup can backup to a large array of devices, including CD-RW drives, DVD writers, removable disks and USB drives – basically any storage device. WinBackup can split your backup into smaller files so it’s easy to span onto multiple disks, CDs, or whatever media you choose to use. Unfortunately, it does not backup directly to an FTP server. I’d like to see this feature in a future version, but not having it isn’t a huge loss.
Not only does WinBackup compress your archives, but it also password protects them and can encrypts them with 128 or 256 bit AES encryption. The compression is decent, but not quite as good as I would like. It compresses better than the backup software that comes bundled with Windows but not as good as WinRAR.
Scheduling in WinBackup is simple. You can have it backup daily, monthly, or anywhere in between. I have two main backup jobs, one for all my important files and one for my user data, configuration settings and saved game files. I have the main backup burn to a CD every month and I backup up my config files and saved game files to a USB pen drive every Friday.
On my WindowsXP Pro system WinBackup was very stable and fairly fast. I’ve run about twenty or so backups and it hasn’t frozen or crashed. Before WinBackup burns your backup to a CD (DVD, or whatever you choose to use) it copies the files to a temp folder on your hard drive and compresses them. I have three hard drives in my system, so in my case it has to copy files from all three hard drives. WinBackup was pretty fast, at copying, compressing, and burning. The speed is comparable to the Windows backup program.
Overall, WinBackup is an excellent product. It works great, it’s inexpensive, easy to use and can encrypt your files. To be completely honest, I can’t think of much that’s wrong with it. The only thing that comes to mind is the compression and the lack of FTP support, but those are not big issues. I give WinBackup a 10 out of 10.