How to isolate 2nd HDD from system? | PCSPECIALIST

How to isolate 2nd HDD from system?

slane

Bronze Level Poster
I want to get a second HDD to backup my system every 2 weeks or the like, but can I stop the HDD from being accessed by the computer without unplugging it. My plan is so that if I get a virus it won't infect my backup HDD.

All help appreciated, muchas gracias :)
 

Wozza63

Biblical Poster

c-hri-s

Bronze Level Poster
A virus wont affect your second drive if all your using it for is backup.
That's not the case - a destructive virus could delete or infect data on your second drive as easily as your master. The ONLY way to keep it safe is to disconnect it.

I'd go for an external drive - or an online backup service.
 

vanthus

Member Resting in Peace
I would have thought a virus could only access the drive if you opened the said drive,
then again I could be wrong.
 

Finn

Enthusiast
I would have thought a virus could only access the drive if you opened the said drive,
then again I could be wrong.
A virus can do whatever it wants, its fairly trivial to just loop through all drives in explorer scanning them for executables to infect.

Its fairly clunky but the only way I can think of to do this is to truecrypt (http://www.truecrypt.org/) the entire drive and then only unlock it when you want to backup to it and then re-lock it afterwards. However don't lose your password as otherwise your paddle-less up the creek
 

vanthus

Member Resting in Peace
A virus can do whatever it wants, its fairly trivial to just loop through all drives in explorer scanning them for executables to infect.

Its fairly clunky but the only way I can think of to do this is to truecrypt (http://www.truecrypt.org/) the entire drive and then only unlock it when you want to backup to it and then re-lock it afterwards. However don't lose your password as otherwise your paddle-less up the creek
Hmm,fair enough I may have to rethink my backup strategy,
any other views on this?
 

c-hri-s

Bronze Level Poster
It depends how you're doing it as to the risk you're exposed to. If you use backup software which creates an archive file of its own format (such as Acronis or similar) then the chances of a virus being able (/bothered) to unpack and infect that are low. Backup software (or manual backups) which just duplicate files to the target drive, or use zip/rar or some other standard compression scheme are much more at risk.

My preference is to send data to an online backup service and encrypt it. Next best is probably to use an external drive or encrypt your secondary drive as is suggested above. Third is to keep LOTS of redundant and historical backups, if anything goes wrong - you're safe many times over.

The safest backup media is read only - so backups to DVDs, BluRays, etc. are never going to get infected once the writing session is closed. They don't last forever, though.
 

Buzz

Master
You could install Ubuntu or backtracks onto a drive. Go into windows, back it up. Put the backup onto the Ubuntu drive.

ubuntu
or
backtrack-linux

That way then you also have dual boot options as to what op system you wanna use.

forgetting about Virus solely, Its kinda pointless having a backup of important information in a rig with the original anyway. I know it's not very common but if there was a power surge and fried the drives ALL info would be gone regardless.

Personally the best method is as Chris said prior. Either online storage or external drive. But you could go into device manager, disk drives, right click the drive and disable it.. Once disabled it cant be used. Do same to re enable it as and when needed.
 
Last edited:

slane

Bronze Level Poster
I like the above suggestion of installing ubuntu. Will this be virus proof? Will a virus running in windows be able to affect ubuntu?

If I use
backup software which creates an archive file of its own format (such as Acronis or similar).
and export the backup file to the ubuntu hdd then this seems pretty safe to me?

What do you think?
 

Buzz

Master
That's how I had mine set up in the past, Dual boot windows and Backtracks. I had a backup on an external HDD and on the Backtracks partition. A virus wont transfer from Windows to Ubuntu. It will however be as normal and if you backup a corrupt system then the dodgy files will transfer back and forth, only difference being that even if a virus is transferred to Ubuntu it wont effect that system and you can then scan and check your windows disc via Ubuntu.
 
Top