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Extending OneCare to provide off-site backup by copying to remote PCs RRS feed

  • Question

  • This is definitely "outside" the out-the-box functionality of OneCare, but I wondered if anyone had any suggestions for using OneCare in the way I envisage below.  Sorry - this may well be a bit Off-Topic (if there's another more suitable place to post am more than willing to re-post).  I think a similar scenario could be quite common to a lot of people and would be valuable.

     

    I have two PCs in one house (my flat; both using OneCare) - these back up to an exernal drive shared on my local network.  In another house (my parents place) I have another PC (not using OneCare; the relevance here is that it's a remote PC with plenty of hard-disk space!)  Both houses have fairly high speed broadband (although upload as usual is considerably slower than download)

     

    Is there some (fairly) straight-forward way to automatically set things up to copy my backup files (once created on the external drive share) to the remote PC?

     

    Assumptions to make here are things like:

    i) the remote PC and local PCs will be on at known times (maybe not all the time, but at least sufficiently long to complete this)

    ii) both will have their internet connections up and running

    iii) I will know details of each computer and hopefully should be able to configure them with the necessary firewall settings for a suggested solution (I'm fairly tech savvy having done various development work over the years, but not a network expert!)

    iv) The PCs in my flat are running Vista (Home Premium on one; Ultimate on the other)

    v) The remote PC is running XP Professional

    vi) I trust the three computers to a fairly high degree (i.e. they're not publicly accessible)

    vii) For the time being, I'm more interested in backing up from the first house to the second and not especially the other way (although clearly being able to include this might be a bonus in the future)

    viii) There is sufficient room for backups to be stored locally first and then transferred

    ix) Key aim is to do backup that is offsite (i.e. to avoid risk from fire/flood/theft of equipment in primary location)

    x) Encypttion of sensitive data can be dealt with separately, but any extra security would be a bonus (files are personal even if not containing much sensitive data)

     

    I don't particularly want to buy some more kit and ideally don't want to buy more software (or not expensive stuff!).

     

    The sorts of ideas I was thinking might work are things like some sort of Private Peer-to-peer network between the computers, or potentially running a VPN connection between them, or having a Scheduled Task run a batch file that would somehow remote on to the computer to pick up the files and copy them locally. (I'm not sure how I could trigger the Scheduled Task - perhaps just wait a suffient amount of time after the backup is scheduled in OneCare??)

     

    Does anyone have experience using any / all the above and have any advice on applicability or any (major) pitfalls / relative merits?

     

    I'm guessing VPN would be complicated and perhaps overkill.  The others seem fairly realistic with differing degrees of work needed to set them up.

     

    My guess is that lots of families/friends would have similar set ups where you would happily provide mutual offsite back for each other.

     

    Cheers,

    Neil

     

    PS I am aware that the OneCare licence wouldn't cover the remote PCs as I believe it's just for use within one household (right? although let's not get sidelined by this....! :-)   )

     

    Friday, December 7, 2007 11:56 AM

Answers

  • You're right - this is pretty out of the box....

    The scenario you desire is totally unsupported, but I think it may be possible with some research and tweaking.

    Check out Hamachi - https://secure.logmein.com/products/hamachi/vpn.asp?lang=en

    I don't know what would be needed to get it set up with the OneCare firewall, but once you've managed that part, your remote PC can be a part of your local LAN using Hamachi as the VPN bridge. In that way, you may be able to point OneCare backup to a Network Share configured on the remote machine. Good luck!

    -steve

    Friday, December 7, 2007 6:31 PM
    Moderator