Magix – Rescue Your Data review

User-friendly data backup and recovery software
Photo of Magix – Rescue Your Data

It’s every computer user’s nightmare – you dump coffee on your keyboard, your netbook gets knocked on the floor, or you’re suddenly faced with the ‘Blue Screen of Death’ as a fatal software conflict irreparably damages or erases your precious documents. We all know we’re supposed to back up our data on a regular basis, but sometimes the backup software itself seems too daunting to use…

MAGIX’s latest foray into the backup arena, Rescue Your Data, is specifically targeted at the laptop generation who are undoubtedly most at risk from computer crashes and accidents (although it works equally well on desktop PCs).

Rescue Your Data is designed to be as helpful as possible, and includes a lengthy video tutorial to guide you through the various options on your screen. Once installed, the first thing that strikes you is how comparatively uncluttered the program’s interface is. Each of its five principal operations – Automatic backup, Manual backup, Restore, Online backup and Additional Features – is clearly marked at the top of the page, together with its own icon. You simply choose one and follow the instructions provided beneath it.

The assumption is that you will have Automatic backup as your setting of choice, and that you have an external hard drive standing by as your save destination.

The first time you run the software, it runs a full backup to your chosen drive. From then on, subsequent backups simply add new or changed data to this existing backup. You can also decide when you want scheduled backups to take place, and when you want them to end.

Obviously, there will be times when you only need to save a few files or folders. For those occasions, the Manual backup function is more suitable. This enables you to copy anything, from a single file to a complete drive, and gives you the option to save either to an internal/external hard drive or to a CD/DVD. This option brings up a new screen with your drive contents on the left and the destination on the right. You simply click the ‘Insert’ button to make the transition.

When it comes to restoring data from a backup, you can either highlight the complete, saved backup, or you can hunt down individual files or folders, including different backup dates and versions.

Extras include the ability to make a bootable rescue disk, a data shredder (useful when you’re wiping your hard drive) and a Restore Files function, which does its best to recreate deleted Windows files (the software is compatible with XP, Vista and 7).

As is fitting for the age of cloud computing, MAGIX also lets you back up your data online – but there’s a catch. The software comes with a paltry 500MB worth of storage space. This can be expanded (for a fee), but annoyingly, clicking on the more storage space’ link simply takes you to the MAGIX website, with no indication of what to do to increase save capacity. You also need to have lots of patience – we uploaded just 175MB of photos and it took nearly half an hour…

Company: Magix

Contact: 0203 318 9218

For less than £40 MAGIX has provided a clutter-free, easy to follow backup programme for your laptop contents, which includes useful tutorials and some helpful extras - but the online storage is disappointingly puny and long-winded.