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The Backup Question

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by dziemann, May 23, 2010.

  1. dziemann

    dziemann Lurker
    Thread Starter

    I have had my Desire for about a month, and I am finding it very hard to understand why there is no simple backup to PC application.

    All I want is something that knows the SD card locations of my SMS and photos and will quietly back them up to corresponding locations on my PC hard drive.

    At the moment I am using a file browser app to manually copy the files when the phone is physically connected and using HTC sync.

    I don't really understand why all(?) the backup solutions I have seen cater for backup to the phone's SD card or backup to a server in the cloud, which is, respectively, far too little and far too much.

    I already have a backup strategy for my PC. I just want the frequently changing locations in my SD card to be quietly copied to my PC hard drive, and prefereably OTA.

    I am wondering if there is something about my usage pattern that makes me want something that no-one else wants.

    But to me it feels like a huge hole. Thanks for any advice.


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  2. wayrad

    wayrad Android Expert

    Heck no, I want exactly the same thing. Seems like I have to worry about each app individually (oops, sorry, HTC Sync backs up two apps. Whoopee.), instead of just pressing the old Hotsync button like I've been doing for the last ten years... :thinking:
  3. dziemann

    dziemann Lurker
    Thread Starter

    Thanks for the reply, I thought I was going mad.

    So, let's get this clear then. There are 50,000 Android apps and none of them backs up the phone's SD card onto a PC?

    Isn't that app #0? I must be missing something.
  4. wayrad

    wayrad Android Expert

    Well, I'm new to all this. I too am desperately hoping I'm just missing something...If I could just back up everything to the card in one fell swoop, and there was a way to restore everything from there (again in one fell swoop), and I could copy the card manually to the PC, I think maybe I'd be content. I never used Palm Desktop all that much, but I miss the sense of security that the hotsync conduit gave.
  5. Deleted User

    Deleted User Guest

    I've seen people mention MyBackUp Pro in a few places. It's a premium app, but might do what it is you want. I haven't tried it myself to be able to comment on it though.
  6. SUroot

    SUroot Extreme Android User

    I back up my entire SD card to my pc automatically on windows 7. its easy enough to do. Its an incremental back up too, so it only backs up new files.

    If you're interested in how to do this (on Windows 7), let me know and I'll post a reply with a how-to.

    In xp / vista there are other methods that can be used, but they're not fully automated.

    Edit> this is via usb by the way.
  7. pajopatak

    pajopatak Newbie

    Ok danfrance, please post a reply for how to on windows 7.:) thanks
  8. adam1985

    adam1985 Member

    +1 for that :)
  9. SUroot

    SUroot Extreme Android User


    Basically you need the following:

    1) Set your phone to connect as disk drive Menu>settings>connect to pc>default connection type "disk drive". You dont HAVE to do this, but the back up will only work when the sd card is mounted

    2) You need to ensure when you plug your desire in, it always is assigned the same drive letter (G:\ for example)

    3) Access to the windows event logs and scheduled tasks) basically any account other than "Guest" but Admin would be preferable

    4) Notepad :)

    ok step-by-step

    1) Create a folder on your C drive for the backup to go to. Something like C:\htc\SDbackup

    2) plug your deire in (and mount sd) and browse to the SD card through Windows.

    3) On the root of the SD card (just in the sd card, not within a folder) right click an empty space>new>text document. Rename the document SDbackup.bat (or something). Make sure you remove .txt off the end and replace with .bat

    4) Right click the new file, select edit (or open with notepad)

    5) Type the following as displayed on the line below in the file:

    xcopy "g:\" "C:\htc\SDbackup" /d /e /c /r /i /k /y

    Please note, G is what my htc desire is, change it to whatever letter yours is.

    -If you double click this file now, it will start the back up. The first time it will back up EVERYTHING on your sd card. Every time after, just new files.

    It may be worth the first time, manually copying the contents to C:\htc\SDbackup to save time the first time.

    6) go to the windows event logs... Right click my computer>manage>event viewer and browse the fiolder structure on the left for the follwoing location:

    Event Viewer/Applications and Services Logs/Microsoft/Windows/DriverFrameworks-UserMode/Operational

    Windows 7 logs an event when you plug your desire in. If you unplug and then plug your desire back in, you should see a list of events (possibly 10 or so) for the time you did it.

    Sort them by time (latest at the top) and choose the top one. For me, the evnt ID (in the ID column) was 2101. Make a note of the ID number, you will need this shortly. If you look in the event, it will reference HTC and ANDROID in there somewhere. To be sure, unplug and plug the desire back in to ensure the event ID you just picked comes up again.

    7) create a scheduled task START>all programs>Accessories>System tools>Scheduled Tasks

    Go to Action>create task

    8)Go to the "Triggers" tab, and change the drop down menu called "begin the task:" to "on event" (or somthing like that)

    You will need to change the log to:
    Set the Source to:

    Then in the box below put the event id (eg 2101 - that you picked earlier)

    Set a delay for 30 seconds or something (to give windows time to mount the SD card)

    9) go to the actions tab, Action should be "start a program"

    Browse and select the .bat file on your SD card that you created earlier.

    Thats it, you're done.

    Sounds complicated but it really isnt.

    Now when you plug your desire in (and mount the SD card - if not set to automatically do so) all the new files will be copied to the C: drive.

    You will know if it works as a little black command prompt window will open and remain open until the job is complete
    Tyseyh, Staggers, tsuxtube and 8 others like this.
  10. adam1985

    adam1985 Member

    looks simple to do will give it a try when i get home. Just one question what advantage is there with the automount app? does it do anying different to setting the desire to always connect as disk drive?

  11. SUroot

    SUroot Extreme Android User

    No, I didnt know that functionality was there - so thanks for that. I'll amend as required.
  12. speedycolzalez

    speedycolzalez Android Enthusiast

  13. SUroot

    SUroot Extreme Android User

    yes there are 23134351 apps that can do this, but my solution is specifically without using any apps, 3rd party or other wise.

    Besides you still would need a trigger.
  14. SUroot

    SUroot Extreme Android User

    Just wondering, hasn anyone tried my solution yet? If so, for you was the event ID 2101?
  15. hortstu

    hortstu Android Enthusiast

    I'm looking for a similar solution to Dan's, only I want to sync with a linux/ ubuntu computer.
  16. TobbeLund

    TobbeLund Lurker

    It works like a charm and yes, the ID is 2101. Thanks!
  17. tomvdp

    tomvdp Newbie

    This is going to sound very noob, but what exactly are you backing up that way ? Are contacts, messages, settings, ... all stored on the SD card ? I guess not. If not, what steps should one take prior to backing up the SD card ?
  18. SUroot

    SUroot Extreme Android User

    Its just the sd card contents. I believe emails are also stored on the card, but not messages or contacts.

    There are apps that will back up the phone contents. There are many infact. But nothing to do the SD card, which is why I went for this.

    The method basically detects when your desire is plugged in which triggers an event, which is to backup the SD card. You NEED win 7. There are other methods available in XP, such as autorun.

    In regards to what preperation is required. not a lot, although I would manually copy the entire contents to your desired backup location first, otherwise teh autobackup will take forever the first time.

    From then on in, it will only copy new files.

    Hope this helps
  19. tomvdp

    tomvdp Newbie

    I understand you are backing up the SD card. But it would be extremely handy if some other backup mechanism would backup the phone data to the SD card first!
  20. SUroot

    SUroot Extreme Android User

    Plenty of apps on the market to do that sort of thing. Not sure of their names.
  21. Nev..

    Nev.. Lurker

    I did the same, created an bat file with the following command.
    xcopy \*.* c:\$$_HTC_SD_BACKUP\ /E /W /C /F /M /H /Y
    Interesting that I've gone for an almost completely different set of xcopy parms to danfrance.
    There's no need to specify the dirve letter because you're running it from the root of the drive you want to copy anyway (just in case windows wakes up one day and decides on a different drive allocation).
    Also, Instead of doing all the event log business, and scheduling through a task scheduler, I just created an autorun.inf file on the root of the SD card with the following contents (where the .bat filename is the name of my backup bat file).
    so I get a popup every time I mount the drive and just need to click to kick it off. Setting (always do this) on the autorun options and removing the /W makes the whole process automatic. With the autorun when you update computers, you dont have to set up the scheduling tasks again.
  22. SUroot

    SUroot Extreme Android User

    On what OS?

    You cannot use autorun.inf on any device that is not a CD ROM in Windows 7. This functionality was removed by Microsoft for security purposes.

    Since I am not using autorun, I have to use a scheduled task with an event trigger. This functionality is only available in Windows 7, which is why my method only applies to it.

    It is interesting that we chose different switches, although I left out all I thought was superfluous and used the ones I thought would make the process as automated as possible.

    My method is completely automated. All I need do is plug the phone in with the USB cable and it does it. No user intervention required.
  23. Nev..

    Nev.. Lurker

    ahh fair enough. I've never used Windows 7. Didn't realise they'd changed autorun.
  24. SUroot

    SUroot Extreme Android User

    I agree with them that it makes it more secure, but for my role as a Desktop engineer, I will miss USB autorun functionality greatly.

    But at least they've given us another way of doing it. Bit more complex to set up, but it does work well.

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