Protect your data from disaster with the latest edition of this ultra-versatile backup tool
Acronis True Image 2014 is the next generation of Acronis International's popular backup tool.
The core of the program remains as before: it's a powerful way to back up anything from individual files and folders, to single partitions or entire hard drives.
True Image 2014 now supports backing up your system to Acronis Cloud, the company's online storage service (it gives you one year of 5GB storage for free). There's very little extra involved in making this happen. You just choose "Online Storage" in the "Destinations" box, enter your cloud user name and password and you're ready to go.
Acronis says the online backup and recovery process has been tweaked for extra performance in this release, and True Image 2014's support for incremental image backup and recovery - online, as well as locally - should further help to improve speeds.
The True Image bootable recovery environment now also fully supports Acronis Cloud. If your system won't start then you can run an incremental partition recovery from an online backup, getting your system working again with the minimum of hassle.
There's support for creating up to 5 online backups from a single computer, giving you considerable flexibility in deciding what to restore.
The other big news this time is that the program comes fully certified for Windows 8 (although of course it also works on everything from XP onwards).
Of course True Image 2014 still has all its previous features: smart scheduling, backups to just about anywhere (DVDs, USB keys, GPT drives, NAS devices, the cloud), 256-bit AES encryption, free Android and iOS mobile apps, easy restoration, and more.
And if you need even more, the new True Image 2014 Premium edition has all the standard features, but also supports restoring your backups to any other PC, dynamic disks, even Microsoft Windows PE environments. This may be particularly useful when migrating to a new computer, as the program can transfer selected files, folders or the entire system to your target PC. (None of this is available in the trial version, but you can read more about True Image Premium on the Acronis site.)
The trial version will ask you to enter a trial activation code. Clicking a link will open a web page where you can provide your email address and have one sent to you, but this may also start downloading the installer again. If it does, just cancel that download, you don't need it - your activation details will be emailed to you shortly.
Review by Mike Williams.