Santa’s Conundrum: Surface Book or MacBook Pro?

Christmas is just around the corner, and every year, the author of this article asks himself the question: “am I getting a new Mac?”

OK, to be honest, the author never got a Mac or PC as a present, be it for Christmas or any other occasion. Beyond that, he wouldn’t necessarily choose a machine like that at all if he still had three wishes left.

But first of all, since no fairy ever came along with three wishes to give (at least not yet), and secondly, that it’s been a few years since the author last believed in Santa Claus and thirdly, that he doesn’t know anybody else who could make such wishes come true, this question is largely irrelevant.

Be that as it may: The hard disk has been making some really strange sounds for a while and the excessively loud fan noise has been getting on the author’s tender nerves for a long time by now. The laptop already has nearly five years under its belt – maybe it really is the right time to start looking for a new one?

An iPad, perhaps, or maybe even one of these hip new Macbook Pros with a touch bar? Or one of the new Microsoft Surface Books or maybe even a Surface Studio all-in-one PC would be a real eye-catcher.

The agony oxmas16_235x425pxf choice, so the saying goes. In this case, it’s also hard to balance out the pros and the cons. In spite of its somewhat higher price, the author tends a bit towards Microsoft’s classy laptop, not least because of its integrated tablet function.

One way or another, something has to be done about clattering hard disk – and quickly. An extra backup can never hurt, and if you pick the right one, you might even be able to restore your hard-earned work environment on the new hardware. If the author chooses a new laptop, then he could use his entire system on the new machine without having to change it – including all of the applications. And since the author earns his daily bread at a software company – one that specializes in data migration, backup and restoration – he naturally took precautions, and with the Paragon Hard Disk Manager, he had the right tool at hand.

If the author decides to get a new Surface or Macbook later on, he won’t have any trouble getting started. With the Hard Disk Manager for Windows or Mac, he can optimize for one operating system or the other, move his existing systems to new hardware, back up his Mac OS as well as his Windows PC, and much more. Observant readers may have already noted that the author feels at home on the Mac as well as with Windows – if not, then it’s clear now.

Switching between the two systems has become second nature to him; so much so that he doesn’t always remember which machine he created which file on. But thanks to Paragon NTFS for Mac drivers, this doesn’t matter much anymore. He can access his files from either world with the greatest of ease.

If this gets anybody to thinking: “It’s so easy to juggle between Mac and Windows? I wish I could do that!” then the Paragon Christmas bundle would be the thing to get. The double-pack offers big savings and, if any new hardware does show up under the tree, then Paragon’s time-tested solutions will be a genuine must-have.


UPDATE: Since the author, in spite of all his efforts, has started to accept that he won’t be getting a pay raise, he ended up deciding against both a Surface a MacBook and opted for a more affordable yet comparably high-performance model from another manufacturer.

UPDATE: The hard disk ended up conking out after all, but thanks to the backup and the right Paragon tools, the author made it through unscathed.

PS: The author also works with a famous Linux distributor, but that’s another story.

Better safe than sorry! Paragon Backup & Recovery 16 is out now!

Pabr16Logoragon Backup & Recovery 16 is an advanced backup and safeguarding software that enables private users to perform complex backup tasks with ease. Thanks to Backup and Recovery 16, there is absolutely no need for deep IT skills or advanced computing knowledge in order to protect files and folders, partitions, disks or even the entire system. Paragon Backup & Recovery makes PC protection child’s play.

Software wizards

Not sure which setting is most suitable? No need to worry! The powerful software wizards of Paragon Backup & Recovery 16 guide users step by step through the backup jungle – and the newly designed UI will clear the path!

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Backup Job Wizard

Backup Job Wizard - Backup & Recovery 16
Backup Job Wizard – Backup & Recovery 16

The Backup Job wizard is the ultimate in automated backups. Thanks to intuitive presets, less than 8 clicks are needed to set automated backup jobs for the entire windows system, single files, folders or partitions.
However, advanced users get the full control at their hands and can refine and modify existing strategies or define custom ones.

  • Set-and-forget technology: continuous PC protection without questions
  • All backup technics: including incremental backup, file based backup, differential backup, full backup, backups of particular file types, backup to virtual hard disks…
  • Flexible scheduling: daily, hourly, weekly, monthly and even erratic schedules are possible (e.g. daily, every second week, not on Wednesdays and Fridays)
  • Powerful retention mechanism: automatically deletes older backups. Based on intuitive presets or manual definitions. Backup & Recovery automatically ensures that the most recent backup is always available.
  • Pinned backups: exclude single backups from the retention policy with a single click
  • And many more

Continue reading Better safe than sorry! Paragon Backup & Recovery 16 is out now!

Backup & Recovery 16

Backup & Recovery 16Paragon Backup & Recovery 16 is an easy-to-use system and data protection solution for Windows PCs. Thanks to its unique interface and user guidance, it is the perfect tool for both the fledgling PC user as well as the sophisticated PC professional. With Backup & Recovery 16, you can set complex backup routines quickly and easily like never before.

We would like to thank our customers who already use Paragon Backup & Recovery 15 and we offer a free upgrade for those until the 31. August 2016.

How Do I Get the Upgrade

To receive the upgrade, please login into your account and follow the instructions.
If it is the first time you log in into the new MyParagon Account, see our knowledge base for detailled information.

In the first step, we offer all our customers who have already bought Backup & Recovery 15 the possibility to get a free upgrade. This will be possible until the end of August 2016.

World Backup Day

Have you already backed up your data and memories? Today is the best day to think of it!

We do not force you to use the “The World Backup Day Pledge

“I solemnly swear to backup my important documents and precious memories on March 31st.”

but we will give you a chance to make a really easy back up of your complete hard drive, single partitions or selected files and folders.
Backup & Recovery

So we offer 100! Free Licenses of Backup & Recovery 15 Home on our Facebook page. All you have to do is to leave a comment on this posting

How to safeguard your virtual infrastructure – snapshot, backup or replica?

We get lots of questions about the necessity of backups with respect to virtual systems such as VMware virtual environments or ESXi hypervisors. The great number of existing technical terms on the topic and the equally great number of solution approaches make it hard to get an overview of it all. While snapshots and “classic” backups are related in nature, there are fundamental differences. And then there is also replication as a further member of the big family of data protection, backup, business continuity and high availability.

Whitepaper Download: Snapshot replica or backup - the right solution for ESXi
Whitepaper Download (PDF): Snapshot, Backup or Replica?

Hardware virtualization offers many advantages when it comes to making the most cost-effective use of expensive IT infrastructure. Furthermore, virtual systems are ideally suited for maintaining high availability of critical business applications and data. High availability and data backup are also closely related, but they are by no means identical twins.

Which is better? Backup or snapshot (or even replication)?

So when it comes to the question whether backup or snapshot is the better choice, the simple answer would be: “Neither of them!” It simply depends on the scenario at hand and the platforms being used, so it’s clear that the answer’s not so simple after all. Snapshots are ideal for making quick changes to the virtual machine. These changes can then either be used or discarded with just a few clicks. In the latter case, the snapshot is “played back” on the ESXi machine. Strictly put, a snapshot is thus neither suitable for high availability nor backup scenarios – its importance lies in the field of maintenance. In order to keep a virtual machine highly available, it’s a good idea to create VM replications. Why? Because the replica of a virtual machine corresponds to the original and can take over its task in just a few seconds. Replicas and snapshots are both temporary – so they are not suitable for retrieving lost datasets from the distant past.
In addition, they are usually saved on the same data storage as the original machine, which makes it impossible to restore them if they are physically damaged.
In our whitepaper Snapshot, Backup or Replica? What, When and How, we address the various techniques in greater detail, put them in context and show the differences.

Whitepaper Download: Snapshot replica or backup - the right solution for ESXi
Whitepaper Download (PDF): Snapshot, Backup or Replica?
Paragon Protect & Restore - the easy all-in-one availability solution for physical and virtual IT infrastructures
Paragon Protect & Restore

Paragon Protect & Restore is a cost-effective software solution which combines the comprehensive backup tools for virtual and physical servers and workstations in a central console. VMware, Hyper-V and physical servers can be backed up, restored and archived based on role. The free basic version provides a high-performance availability solution for small companies and start-ups – without straining their budgets!

Learn more about Paragon Protect & Restore »

Most effective protection against the Locky Trojan horse – an up-to-date backup

Locky – a new Trojan horse that encrypts your files

It’s time to take caution because a new Trojan horse known as “Locky” is striking terror everywhere and is spreading like wildfire all over the internet. More and more infections have been reported in the past few days, especially in Germany – thousands of infections an hour, in fact! Like many other harmful programs, this Trojan horse also spreads via E-mail. Specifically, E-mails with infected Office documents attached are being sent to unsuspecting victims. These document contain a macro code which the Trojan horse installs as soon as the document is opened. The insidious trick here is that such documents are often passed off under the guise of an open invoice. The virus is now being spread by JScripts as well.
Once installed, the virus searches for certain file types which the developers of the virus assume to be private files of personal value, such as text documents and multi-media files. Files in accessible networks and cloud storages can also fall victim to the virus. These files are then encrypted by Locky so that the user can no longer open them. Instead, the user is demanded to pay the developers ransom money to decrypt the files. Unfortunately, there is no way at present to remove the virus from the system once it has been activated. As soon as you detect that Locky has infected your system, you should shut your system down as quickly as possible – even the rough way by pulling the plug on your computer. This way, you can at least prevent the Trojan horse from causing even more damage. You can then remove the virus with a disinfection CD and attempt to restore the encrypted files. However, this approach only works for files which Windows has made a “shadow copy” of. Unfortunately, Locky will also delete these files, which severely limits your chances of success.
That’s why it’s better to take preventative action so that you won’t even catch the virus in the first place. This means there are basic rules for protecting your system from external attacks (which you should already be following anyway).
Do not open file attachments on E-mails from senders you don’t know, and back up important files on a separate data medium. Make sure to keep your antivirus program up to date at all times. You should also update your operating system and other programs regularly, since these updates often close security loopholes which Trojan horses take advantage of.
Specifically for this virus, you can configure your MS Office not to run any macro code at all, or only to do so upon confirmation from you.
If you have already fallen victim to Locky, make sure to keep the encrypted files. Since the virus is quite new, there is no way to reverse the damage right now, but this may change over time. This makes it all the more important look for updates on a regular basis.

How can you protect yourself?

The only effective protection in a worst-case scenario is to have a backup on hand which can reliably restore your data. This is also recommended by the BSI (German Federal Office for Information Security).

Paragon Backup & Recovery

Backup & Recovery 15 Home
Backup & Recovery Home

That’s why we recommend our solution Backup & Recovery 14 Free Edition for personal backups.
You can get it for private use free-of-charge at
The expanded for-pay version of Backup & Recovery 15 Home can be had at a reduced price of just $19.95 (until March 15, 2016) as a single license, or as a family license (3 PCs in one household) for just $ 34.95.

Don’t wait: today is the best day for a backup!