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Posted on Nov 28, 2013 in Backup, Planning A Backup | 0 comments

Oops!Backup Vs. Genie Timeline Part 3 – Other features and conclusions

Here you can see at a glance the other useful features the packages offer.

Feature Genie Timeline Oops!
Disaster Recovery Yes No
Encryption Yes (AES) No
Compression Yes No
Network backup Yes Yes

 

Genie Timeline has the clear advantage where professional features are concerned. Offering both encryption and compression options. Keep in mind that using these options will slow down your backup times further, however. These options are also only available in the more expensive Professional version of the software, but more on that later.

Real world tests

One of the problems with reviewing software is that many issues only come to light after many months, or even years of use. However, in this instance we’re in a unique position to offer some extra insight into both packages. We have used them both in a production environment for several months, to protect files both on network attached storage and locally. Both programs performed their jobs admirably, saving us from catastrophe on several occasions.

Having used the software extensively, we did notice a few quirks though, that we’ll look at now.

When migrating to a new PC, Oops!Backup has the facility to continue using an existing backup set, but Genie Timeline must start a new one from scratch. There is a complicated workaround to enable Genie Timeline to continue an existing backup but that’s not something novice users would want to do. Note that although you can’t continue an old backup on a new PC (or fresh installation of your OS) you can still explore it and recover files from it.

Oops!Backup has a habit of consuming a lot of disk space, seemingly inexplicably. This is because of a folder called “Trash”. This folder is located inside the Oops!Backup folder and contains deleted files. Bizarrely, deleted files appear to be kept indefinitely, and the software will offer to delete older backups of current files rather than clearing out this trash folder. It can be manually cleared by simply browsing to the folder in file explorer, but why the software doesn’t clear it automatically is something of a mystery.

Genie Timeline’s backup status can be misleading. During one test we rebooted our PC while Genie Timeline was in the middle of a backup. When the PC restarted, Timeline reported that the backup was complete. It wasn’t until the next scheduled backup window that the program seemed to realise there were actually several files missing from the backup. More alarmingly, clicking the “Run now” link on the main program interface failed to backup the missing files, which still were not accounted for until the next scheduled backup window. If you have a large dataset make sure to leave your PC on continuously until the initial backup is complete. Perhaps a similar discrepancy can account for our initial problems restoring files in Genie Timeline in our final bench test.

Conclusion

Genie Timeline 2013 Editors choice - Best time-capsule backupEditors choice – Best time-capsule backup

Once again, Genie Timeline is able to trump Oops!Backup in our bench test. While Genie Timeline is still slower than its competitor, taking much longer to perform some backup tasks, its feature set and its ease of use put it firmly ahead of Oops!Backup, particularly where restoring files is concerned. Clearly, Oops!Backup is faster at dealing with big groups of files, which makes it even more of a shame that its interface often makes working with them a chore. Nevertheless Oops!Backup is still a strong contender and also offers some features at a lower price point than Genie Timeline.

Genie9 offer three versions of Timeline. At the bottom tier, the free version lacks many of the advanced features and only takes a backup once every 8 hours. The more affordable home version lacks encryption and, more crucially, the ability to manually select files and folders to back up, limiting you to Genie’s “Smart” selections. The Pro version, as reviewed here, includes all the features we discussed and more besides. Genie Timeline Home is priced at £29.96 (plus VAT). While the pro version is priced at £44.95. Oops!Backup comes in just one variety and is priced at £29 (plus VAT). This includes the ability to select files and folders manually, anywhere on your PC, which is a feature we really feel should not have been left out of any version of Genie Timeline. If you just want the very best Time Machine/Timeline style backup package though, then Genie Timeline Professional is the undisputed champion.

Finally, while time capsule software is a great fit for most users, there are some cases where it is best supplemented with other software too. Remember that if you are a Windows 8 user, the new Windows File History feature brings time machine style backup to your operating system for free. File History only backs up files and folders in your documents folders however. If you are working on programming or web development projects, you may want to look at software like Git or Subversion, which are specially designed for saving different versions of source code files. Finally, keep in mind that these programs backup to local storage drives only. Any particularly precious data should always be backed up off site, be that in the cloud or stored at another location. There are several companies offering backup to the cloud now, our advice is to shop around and pay particular attention to their privacy policy before committing your data to their services.

To find out more about the different versions of Genie Timeline, to see pricing for your region or to purchase a copy, use this link.

To find out more about Oops!Backup or to purchase a copy, use this link.

Part 1 – Introduction

Part 2 – Tests and Results

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