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Need Backup help!

Just bought a 1 TB Seagate Backup Plus to backup my Windows 7 laptop which has 515 GB used, mostly travel photos! It seemed so simple to hook it up and start the Windows backup. It ran for hours and I went to sleep with it running. Then this a.m. I check and read "The disk that your backups are being saved on doesn't have enough space." I have spent the afternoon researching the internet trying to figure out a solution, but I don't know what to do. Any help would be very much appreciated! Thank you.

Posted by
7685 posts

Can you contact Seagate or take it back to the store that sold it to you? I have a Seagate 2T and it works well. Perhaps someone from Seagate can figure it out for you.

Posted by
1491 posts

Why did you not simply copy the 500 MB?

Doing backups must be learned. If you choose backup settings to restore earlier versions (versioning) then a 1 GB fills up quickly, especially if you do not exclude some system folders and file types from backup.

Do a check with Seagate Tools on your disk. Likely 100% OK.

Before bringing the disk back to the store you have to erase your data on the disk, deleting is not enough.
I use Western Digital Data LifeGuard Diagnostics (WLDG) - even if different company. It does not matter and works perfectly but lasts long.

Posted by
4928 posts

OK - can you clarify how you established that 515GB was used on the laptop? You went into Computer and saw this amount used on the C: ? Is that just the amount of space used by the pictures? How much total storage does your laptop C: have?

Did you follow a guide something like this?

https://www.digitalcitizen.life/windows-backup-how-it-works-and-how-create-system-image

I am not crazy about Windows's built-in backup software. I tend to use other software like Acronis True Image. The Windows backup software is different in Windows 10, and you will have to move to that in January anyway (Windows 7 support finally ends in January 2020). Acronis True Image, if you buy it, will still work in Windows 10 the same way it works in Windows 7.

If your goal is to backup your travel photos, FYI the most simple way to do it is to open two folder windows on your laptop - one your Pictures folder, one the E: (drive letter of the Seagate - could be a different letter in your case), then just drag the Pictures from the laptop folder to the Seagate drive folder. And then wait...a few hours while it copies everything. This is a simple way to do it, but if you add more pictures later, you won't be able to copy them again and just copy the new ones. Backup software is smart enough to do that. But if you drag-and-drop a copy of your pictures to the Seagate, at least you'll have one good copy of all of the pictures you have so far!!!

But it is a wise idea to backup your whole laptop, not just the pictures.

Posted by
1491 posts

Personally I am not a fan of Acronis. For beginners the regulat copy and paste is really the easiest way - even not automatic.

Just wanted to add that for media data there is a Segate backup software called Seagate Media Sync, available for Windows 7 & 8 (and Mac).

Posted by
119 posts

Thank you to all for your suggestions! My laptop had 680GB available when new. Now I have 424GB of photos. Looking online I see that many other folks got the same message that I got about not having enough space on the destination drive. It seems weird!

Posted by
4686 posts

Make sure you are only backing up the data and not the whole operating systems and all your applications.

Somewhere, there should be an option where you select the folders that you want to back up.

Posted by
1491 posts

You speak of "backup". There are 3 ways to do this

  • copy regularly folders / files on your own without creating the same file again and again on target device
  • synchronize your data (not the system) baed on a tool
  • backup the system including data based on a tool --> used for systems, rarely for data in private usage

In your case copy or synchronize seems more appropriate.

For re-start from new delete all your files stored on the Seagate drive to avoid storing / creating double data. I still recommend the Seagate Media Sync tool. Read the instructions how to install it and make it run.

Posted by
119 posts

Great news! My laptop is a Gateway, so I decided to try the Gateway backup and it worked! I am a happy camper! Thanks to all of you.