£29.99 Direct Download | £39.99 Retail Box Version | £23.99 Upgrade (version dependent)
At one time, Nero was one of the best CD and DVD-burning software suites money could buy. But the competition hasn't stood still, and while Nero's software was comprehensive, the sheer amount of options on offer was a bit overwhelming for the less tech-savvy. Now we have the company's BackItUp & Burn, which collates some of the most-used applications from the £49.99 Nero 9 Suite into one easy-to-use package for just £29.99
Including the ability to backup to a variety of media (including Blu-ray and memory cards), BackItUp & Burn additionally offers the option to store important data online, though this is a subscription service on which you only get three months' trial. Crucially, it also lets you retrieve deleted files and data from damaged storage.
Installation is a tad convoluted if using the download version; in addition to the main software, Nero's installer requires MSI 4.5 for Windows 6.0 (x86), Microsoft's .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 and Microsoft's VS PIA Redistribution, all of which are automatically downloaded if required. After MSI 4.5 requiring a computer reboot, you have to sit through an additional 231MB download and installation before finally getting onto the install of the actual product.
Once you reach this stage, you get a choice between Complete or Custom installations. Custom offers you the option to install several components. The titular BackItUp lets you back up and restore files, folders or the contents of entire hard drives manually or automatically.
Nero BurnRights is an odd inclusion in a consumer-oriented product, but business users will doubtless find it handy. Basically, it allows a system administrator to set up exclusions allowing users without admin-privileges to burn discs using Nero. This may also prove useful for a family PC, where you can control what your kids can or can't do.
Nero Express focuses on burning multimedia content such as music, video and pictures to discs through an easy-to-use interface, while Nero RescueAgent should help to recover data from deletion and 'unreadable' or damaged sources, a feature that should be a lifesaver for many.
However, installation is still not finished, as halfway through a window pops up which, if you accidentally click 'next', will install the Ask toolbar and make Ask your default browser search. This is the sort of annoyance one would expect from freeware, not a high-end commercial product. After all this yet another restart is required until finally you're ready to go.