Nandroids and other backup tips

Hey folks another reminder please backup your digital data. I know most people don’t think about this till it’s too late. Don’t be one of those. Not a week goes by that I don’t hear from someone who’s ‘lost it all’ and had no backup. Or worse thought they had a backup but never verified it and found it wasn’t usable.

I’ve written many times before on the why’s, and how to’s; here is a great write up

And for backing up your iDevice read here. My go to tool for all things iDevice is still DiskAid . If you don’t want to use that and iTunes, at least use Time Machine and iCloud!

To backup Android devices I use two tools. One is Titanium Backup Pro. [It requires Root access if you don’t know what that is and why you should have it, check here. You can learn how to root your particular device and add a custom recovery on XDA (more at bottom). Titanium benefits and functions are also explained in my other post above.

The other method I use regularly with my Android devices is to create Nandroid backups.

What just what IS a Nandroid? It is a full backup of the partitions on your device’s NAND flash (NAND actually stands for NOT AND,which in simple terms means an electronic gate). Basically a backup of your phones hard drive if you will… The Nandroid backup is a snapshot of your device (it means everything on your phone – your apps, data, your current ROM and even the kernel is backed up) at the time you do the back up. If you restore the back up, it changes your phone BACK to that state. Again I will mention my love of disk images in disaster recovery – done right it is by far the best solution to complete recoverability of data AND system(s) to a point in time.

To create a nandroid you will need a Rooted device, of course, and a ‘custom recovery’ such as ClockWorkMod (CWM) or other recovery such as Team Win Recovery Project (TWRP). So make sure prior to this you have a rooted device and custom recovery on your device.

Here is a Great walkthrough of how to use Android recovery (there TWRP) to backup/create nandroid on the Samsung Galaxy S4. This recovery is very similar to CWM (Clockwork Mod) in functionality but has a few more options and is, of course, touch based; which can save wear on your hardware buttons. The method is virtually the same across android devices.

The king of Android how-to’s is Tim Schofield (QbKing77) check out his various vids here.

This guys also has loads of good vids for various Android devices you may wish to check out here.

Little hack for G4 Sprint that will give you the ability to use your phone as a HotSpot (note that this may be against the Terms Of Service and you could be cancelled for abusing this! So use at your own discretion)

If you’d like to get to learn more about your Android device you should really check out XDA Developers Forum and site. Here is their introductory video. If you spend just a little time there you will surely learn a whole lot about your device and how to really unleash it’s full potential.

Oh, and if you do go there and check out the site keep in mind the pointers from this video!


Acronis Deal

OK here I go again.
Back your sh%t up!

I have written many times previously [read here and here and for Macs here ]about the prudence and wisdom of having backups of your digital data. And by backup I mean that your data exists in TWO places at once and is able to be accessed or recreated from either source.

I believe the best solution is to use Disk Images. And my favorite tool for Windows is Acronis (they should pay me for all the referrals!).
Right now Acronis has another super deal Acronis® True Image™ Home 2012 WITH their Plus Pack which enables restores to dissimilar hardware for only $49.99! And a 3 PC license for only $79.99.

I urge you purchase a large external HDD (or two) – they are very inexpensive now ($100-$150 U.S.) and to invest in this software if you haven’t already. Create a Full Image and breath a sigh of relief, for now. Follow my other posts on continuing a good backup plan. With the option of ‘Universal Restore’ you can ‘take your data forward’ to new/dissimilar hardware too!! OK be data safe! Peace out.