FileHamster – Part 2

August 3, 2007 at 10:08 am | Posted in Backup, Software | 1 Comment

I thought I’d post a quick rundown of the steps I used for FileHamster.

– create a backup folder, preferably on a different drive. (see post on Where to backup under Backup category for why)
– download and install FileHamster
download and install plugins – Diff, Log, Notes, and Zip are all handy additions. Diff and Log are a bit geekier but Notes is ideal for making ongoing text notes of important updates and Zip gives you compression choices for the backup so they use less space. (You can turn off the ones you don’t use under Options, plugins.) Plugins are now part of the paid versions.

During the install process it will ask you about creating a Library. This is a directory of files you’d like monitored and backed up. Use the location you set above. You can do this now or any time later. You can have as many files or directories monitored as you like.

Thats it. It will simply work. But there are some other options that will give you more power:

– View Menu, Revision List to see saved revisions. Select the directory above to see the revision list below. Other feature options are in there too. Log window shows as a tab. You can drag the Revision list up to make it a Tab too.

The program allows you to Quit and manually restart at a later time when you like. See the Taskbar icon for options.

When you save a monitored document, a little window will pop up with a few options. Clicking the Comment button opens the Comments window. You can add a Timestamp from the base checkbox.

– I found the notification bubble (a small button bar that pops up when a revision is saved) was going away too fast. So under Options, Preferences, I upped the “Stay Time” to 5 sec (5000).
You can also set autostart and such here.

Alternately, you can bring the Notes window up and make ongoing notes which are then saved to the revision when it is captured.

If its an important revision, click Protect. This will retain that copy, irrespective of other settings below.

Fancier:
Right-clicking on the Watched Directory and choosing Options brings up the advanced options. The Help file, under Getting Started, Good Practices covers the key options well.

One of the issues is that each time you save, even for the smallest thing, another copy gets saved to the backup. You may like this, but if its excessive, setting a few parameters can reduce the volume. Then whenever you reach a key milestone, you can set the file as Protected and it will be retained in any case. This does require you to make an intervention but thats no issue if you are in the habit of commenting.

For myself, I set a maximum 10 revisions then comment and protect any key ones. Before I set this, I browsed the Revision list and Protected the start point files.

Timing reduces the frequency of backup but means some saves can be delayed so you need to manually call a backup point. You can trigger a “delayed revision” by right-clicking the Taskbar icon. Add a Comment with the checkbox on for Protected file, or simply Protect it. I prefer the handiness of the window popping up on every Save.

The program has a good Help section you may find it worthwhile to explore.

1 Comment »

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  1. NOTE – FileHamster is no longer presented as free. However, basic realtime backup functionality remains when the free trial period ends. You can upgrade if you want more features.

    They tell me it also works in Windows 7 and with 64 bit.

    Like


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