In a previous post about backing up data, I was looking for some usable software that didn't try to do everything. The other day, I ran upon AutoVer for "automatic versioning & backup." It's freeware written by Hunter Beanland, and it does exactly what I wanted -- any files I edit/save in my data directory are mirrored to another drive. I have not used it for versioning yet, since I create versions myself whenever I make a change in a file that I'm not sure is going to work.
To set up AutoVer, you create "watch folders" and set where the backup will be kept. At the same time, you can have the software create an initial backup. All of this runs in the background with no effect that I can see on continuing to use the computer for other things. It's as fast (or even faster) at doing what it does as any commercial backup software I've used.
The files are directly readable on the backup drive, so no having to wait for one huge backup file to be read before you have access to your backup file.
If you try this software and decide to use it, please consider sending Hunter a donation for his efforts.
A couple of weeks back, I was thinking about replacing a Thermaltake BlacX single external eSATA/SATA/USB drive bay with the dual model, and the day I was going to place the order, the single bay quit working. I ordered the dual model. Only one drive was accessible when I connected everything up. After searching, I found a footnote in Thermaltake's website FAQ that says the connected motherboard must support port multiplying. A footnote is no place for important information like that.
So, I'm running the drive bay via its other connection -- USB 2.0. It's as fast as I need for mirroring the files. Otherwise I'd have sent the bay back.
There's great peace of mind in having the backup drives. I'm alternating backup drives once a week (to keep one off site). That way, I am almost assured that I'll lose no more than one week of work in case of a studio disaster.