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41 of 46 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A not so great tool for data backup
AutoBackUp Revisited - 19 January 2009

I wrote my original review about two and a half years ago and gave it four stars. The AutoBackUp product I reviewed at that time was version 1.6.xx. The software has since devolved... as opposed to evolved. Beginning with Version 2.0.xx it was completely rewritten and has never worked properly since. It would take...
Published on June 5, 2006 by Lee W. Meister

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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Extremely buggy software
In June 2007 installed the version of Memeo that came with Seagate ST307504FPA1E3-RK FreeAgent Pro 750 GB USB / eSATA / FireWire 400 External Hard Drive and was initially pleased. A few weeks later I decided to look into the backup directory on the FreeAgent drive, and found that a fair number of the files were not in fact getting backed up. The Memeo error log showed...
Published on December 28, 2007 by J. Ferrans


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41 of 46 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A not so great tool for data backup, June 5, 2006
By 
This review is from: Memeo AutoBackup [Old 1.0 Discontinued Version] (CD-ROM)
AutoBackUp Revisited - 19 January 2009

I wrote my original review about two and a half years ago and gave it four stars. The AutoBackUp product I reviewed at that time was version 1.6.xx. The software has since devolved... as opposed to evolved. Beginning with Version 2.0.xx it was completely rewritten and has never worked properly since. It would take excruciatingly long times (DAYS!) to create its initial backup files. Then it would hog CPU time while performing its updates. It also began creating enormous log files that would eventually fill all available hard drive space (gigabytes and gigabytes!).

I rolled back to the original v1.6 for a while but even that began to act erratically after several months of stability. Finally I removed the program from my system. I replaced it with the freeware XXCOPY. I wrote a couple of batch files using XXCOPY to create and maintain backups of my data files. Now when I'm done with a session, I start a batch file for each backup location and my ~25 gig backup files are updated completely in about 1/4 hour. It isn't instantaneous, but it is almost as effective and I haven't had any of the aggravation that I experienced with AutoBackUp.

I no longer recommend AutoBackUp; I give it zero stars and ask that you disregard my earlier review.

--------------- Original review ----------------------

I bought AutoBackUp on a whim when I saw it for sale in a retail store with a hefty rebate attached to it. I thought when I was buying it that this was a total backup package, but it's not. The packaging doesn't really claim that it's a total system, but neither does it explicitly say that it isn't. That aside, this seems to be extremely good at doing what it was designed to do: back up your DATA files.

First, some things this software does NOT do:

1) Does not back up operating system files.
2) Does not back up installed program files.
3) Does not back up Windows Registry.
4) Does not compress backed up data.
5) Does not currently support backup to CD or DVD.

So you still need a utility like Norton Ghost in the event of a catastrophic system failure.

What good is it, then? Plenty good:

1) It creates and maintains backups of any DATA files you select. Selection can be made by folder, file type, or a few other criteria. For instance, you can tellit to back up JPEG files and it will search your drives to find all .jpg files and back them up.

2) It can simultaneously create many backups at various locations on your computer, or even at an internet site. You can have a backup on a separate partition, a separate internal hard drive, an external drive, etc. or send it to an offsite storage location via the internet.

3) Once the backup files are created, AutoBackUp maintains them in close to real time. For example if you created a backup file for photos from your digital camera then every time you download new pics to your master file, AutoBackUp automatically copies the new pics to the backup location(s) as well!

4) If your backup is to a device that is unavailable - say a USB drive - then AutoBackUp keeps a list of updates to the backup file and makes the modifications as soon as the device is available.

5) It maintains several layers of backed up files. If you make changes to a Word document and save it periodically, it gets backed up every time you save it. There is a user control that lets you select how many copies of a changed file to keep.

6) There is very little impact on system speed. When you perform an operation on a file that is being monitored for backup, the program saves to backup as soon as it detects low CPU usage. This usually occurs within a few seconds of your saving the changes at the master file level. If you are running CPU intensive tasks, however, AutoBackUp will wait until CPU activity has slowed down before performing backup operations.

7) Restores can be made from an entire backup file or from selected elements of the file.

8) Backup files can be encrypted and password protected.

9) It lets you know it is working. When sending files to backup, a small pop-up window is generated to let you know what operation is taking place. The pop-up goes away when the operation is complete. An operation log is also maintained for each backup file on the system. I found the pop-up window useful for the first day or so, but when I was confident the program was working it became annoying, so I disabled it.

Installation only took a couple of minutes. Set-up and execution for initial backups of about 5.5GB to two internal hard drive locations took about two hours with the backup creations running simultaneously. Updates to the backups are continuously monitored by the program and changes are almost instantaneous.

Two final notes: First, the software requires a unique activation code for each computer installation. Mine came with three codes, allowing use on three computers. Second, AutoBackUp is only compatible with Windows 2000 or XP.

If you want to investigate a little further on your own, a visit to the manufacturer's website should be helpful. Navigate to the support section for the FAQ and forum.

To sum things up, this truly is "set it, forget it" software. Once it's installed and functioning, you'll never have to worry about maintaining data backups. This software takes care of it automatically. Highly recommended.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Extremely buggy software, December 28, 2007
This review is from: Memeo AutoBackup [Old 1.0 Discontinued Version] (CD-ROM)
In June 2007 installed the version of Memeo that came with Seagate ST307504FPA1E3-RK FreeAgent Pro 750 GB USB / eSATA / FireWire 400 External Hard Drive and was initially pleased. A few weeks later I decided to look into the backup directory on the FreeAgent drive, and found that a fair number of the files were not in fact getting backed up. The Memeo error log showed that some files had characters in their names that Memeo didn't support for some reason (eg, periods, parens, commas, all characters that Windows supports in file names. It also complained about too-long file names: the Windows limit on file path length was being exceeded in the target backup directory, and the Memeo software didn't do any intelligent file name mappint to compensate. There were other errors too, including files that were originally locked by other programs and would be "retried" later by Memeo. Of course Memeo didn't retry. None of these error messages were displayed on the screen, or even caused a visual indication in the taskbar icon. It may be that Memeo gets in a state where it quietly quits working too. In October, Memeo support was able to give me a later version of the software that did handle the periods and other characters in the file names ... but it also fails to copy backup some files and subdirectories, seemingly at random. I tried doing a "Verify Backup" operation to see if it could repair the damage, but after whirring about for a while, the software quietly stopped with no indication of whether the backup was "verified" or not, and with the errors still there. The error log had no messages either.

You should definitely steer clear of this "product" -- it's only alpha quality, and an incredible embarrassment to Memeo and to Seagate.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not Fault Tolerant, Unknown Failures, No Generic Solutions, June 25, 2007
By 
RBL (San Francisco, CA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Memeo AutoBackup [Old 1.0 Discontinued Version] (CD-ROM)
I have this product and installed the most recent update. This product has several problems.
1) The program is not fault tolerant. My computer crashed while Memeo was running in the background. The program lost my Backup Plan. I installed the most recent program update and my Backup Plan re-appeared and started working. However, I did my own test and discovered that while the program said that everything was backed up, indeed there were files missing on the destination drive. I even erased some of the files on the destination drive to see if the program would catch the discrepancy when I told it to "Verify Backups." It did not and still reported that my data was fully backed-up. The only solution to this is to wipe out your entire back-up plan, wipe out all of the backed-up files on the destination drive, and start all over again from scratch. Try that with 450 Gig of data!
2) For the third time already my back-up plan stalled. The program just says "pending" but nothing ever happens. Days and weeks go by and all you get is "pending." How does Memeo solve this? On their forums they claim that there is no generic solution to this freeze so you have to e-mail them your log file and they will send you a customized solution. Or you could go with the solution in problem number 1, wipe out everything and start all over again from scratch.

I have lost confidence in this product, especially the fact that it gives you a false sense of security by telling you that your files are backed-up when in fact they are not.

I have also used EMC Retrospect 2.0. That program is clunky, bland, less feature rich, and only semi-intuitive, but when it says your stuff is backed-up, you can believe it.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A horrible waste of time, August 4, 2008
By 
G. Favre (Northern California) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Memeo AutoBackup [Old 1.0 Discontinued Version] (CD-ROM)
This travesty of a backup program came bundled with the 500 GB Buffalo Drivestation Combo external HD I recently purchased. Here are the problems I encountered with it.

- took forever to make initial backup
- auto backed up temp internet files while I was browsing, so I entered an exclusion and it stopped backing them up, but the next time I launched it, it started backing them up again with the exclusion still present
- after the first couple of days it stopped backing up automatically altogether
- limited options
- eats up resources, even though it claims not to
- buggy and error-filled operations

Autobackup sounds great in theory, if only it worked half as well as they claim it does. Unfortunately, it's not worth the CD it's printed on.

If you want a great backup program, check out Syncback [...]
The initial backup took a fraction of the time that Autobackup did, lots of options, scheduled or manual backups, backs up fast, takes no time to set up, uses little resources, and best of all: ITS FREE, sorry Amazon.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Corrupted my computer files, uninstall failed,, August 11, 2007
This review is from: Memeo AutoBackup [Old 1.0 Discontinued Version] (CD-ROM)
This is the biggest piece of poop I ever installed on my computer. And I built my own PC from scratch (20 yrs in the industry). The install corrupted my XP files and the Memeo "uninstall" process failed which left corrupted files all over my computer. It took me over 5 hours to repair and I still have not managed to delete all the Memeo trash from my desktop. And I've been a tech programmer for 20 yrs. What a disaster!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Fails to Restore, June 15, 2008
By 
Chovy (San Francisco, CA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Memeo AutoBackup [Old 1.0 Discontinued Version] (CD-ROM)
It is important to notice that all the positive reviews here on Memeo Autobackup are written by people who are talking about their experience backing up files, not restoring files. On the flipside, a lot of the negative reviews are written by people who experienced the harddrive failure you are protecting against, and needed to do a restore.

I am one of those people. I just reconstructed my computer after a hard drive failure. "Thank God I backed all my data up with Memeo," I said to myself. Little did I know how very wrong I was.

What is a backup program's most important function? To restore your files when that fateful day happens. Memeo fails to do this in a serious way. When you connect your new, blank harddrive to your backup drive, Memeo attempts to restore by overwriting your backup drive with your new drive's contents.

Hard to believe? It's true. When you turn on Memeo and ask it to restore a backup to your computer, it first scans your computer and will overwrite any folders that exist on both your computer and your backup, before attempting the restore. I told myself that I must be reading the instructions incorrectly; nope, I double and triple checked. Seriously, try it yourself. Unbelieveable!!!

I'm embarrassed for this company and how shoddy this product is. If you are diligent enough to run a backup program, the last thing you want is to have the file restore fall apart on you.

Do you want to gamble your important personal files on a program that deletes them? Then buy Memeo.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Another vote for look elsewhere, August 23, 2008
By 
This review is from: Memeo AutoBackup [Old 1.0 Discontinued Version] (CD-ROM)
As others have said, this is the WORST backup software I have ever used. Here's my story, which sounds much like what others have experienced.

After a Vista crash the Memeo GUI appears telling me I have no backup plan (a plan was there before the crash). Upon the start of a recreation of a plan, the old plan was found on the external hard drive ... that's great, right? NO! The index had to be rebuilt, which essentially means everything is being backed up again. When I rebooted, the plan was gone completely. Memeo technical support has been no help so far, the only thing I can find in previous support requests was to start over.

Other drawbacks are the backup runs constantly, backing up on the fly. This is annoying because some files, which are not in use, are being backed up constantly. Also the balloon tips, which can't be shut off via the software appear incessantly - it was so bad I had to edit the registry to turn of balloon tips altogether.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Worst of the Worst!!! Is there a rating lower than 1 star?, July 21, 2008
By 
Martin J. Lammer (Carpentersville, IL) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Memeo AutoBackup [Old 1.0 Discontinued Version] (CD-ROM)
Memeo Autobackup simply does not work properly. It does not work as advertised. I paid full price for the full version. Backing up Outlook mail files are completely HIDDEN. Found it anyway and turned it on and it STILL DIDN'T BACK IT UP!!! Thousands of files selected for backup not backed up. Customer Support / Tech Support is the worst in the world. I had to take a whole day off of work to deal with them and them they wanted me to take a second whole day off of work because their products sucks.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Incomplete Software, February 18, 2008
By 
-TMcN- (Near Seattle) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Memeo AutoBackup [Old 1.0 Discontinued Version] (CD-ROM)
Memeo is an odd bit of software. The focus is on backup up your data - only - to online storage. It CAN back up other files, but it won't by default. And it can backup to, for example, a USB hard disk, but it's not really optimized for that either... it doesn't compress (which would speed up a USB backup) nor does it have decent file masks. This weakness at USB usage is especially strange considering Memeo is bundled with drives by Buffalo and Seagate.

Memeo does do automatic real-time backup of data decently well. For example, the instant your mail folder is updated, it can back it up. But even this is screwed up by the lack of exclusions. If you selected a general location that includes files that are frequently updated... such as your mail history, your browser cache, Firefox/Opera cookies, etc... Memeo will back all those pointless files up every few seconds also. And you can't easily tell it not to, because file exclusions aren't exposed, just directory exclusions. (You can hack the BackupRules.xml file to accomplish this though.)

If you want a simple program that will help you store your financial, email and word processing data to an external server, Memeo is a good choice. But anyone who wants control of the backup should find a better tool.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Automatic Updates render program useless, March 9, 2009
Bought the program and it worked fine. Memeo then sent an automatic update and from that point on when the computer booted up I received a message that "Memeo has encountered a problem and must shut down". Detail inside the message show "possible corrupted database." Sent the error message to Memeo at least 30 times and asked them to call or respond. No response! Found a phone number and called it and their voice mail box was full. I'm now looking for a backup program that will work and where customer service will respond.
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Memeo AutoBackup [Old 1.0 Discontinued Version]
Memeo AutoBackup [Old 1.0 Discontinued Version] by Avanquest (Windows 2000 / XP Home Edition / XP Professional)
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