Backup is a word that many computer users hate, simply because it requires a degree of effort to back up data, which is one of modern life's most boring tasks. Plenty of programs have sought to make data backup a speedy and painless process, but it's still not quite as unobtrusive as we'd like.

LapBack, primarily aimed at laptop users, is a one-click affair and we've been impressed by how efficiently it behaves. Don't be put off by the name, though, because you can use this on your desktop in the same way.

This is one of the simplest back-up products that we've ever used, and the interface is stripped down to make full or incremental backups a painless process. You can choose to back up any folder by selecting "Add new item" or right-clicking any folder in Windows Explorer and choosing the correct option. Dragging and dropping folders directly into the application also works.

USB key

Central to LapBack is the use of a USB flash drive. Once you've added folders, you plug in a USB stick. Then, after your laptop has detected it and installed the drivers, you click the Backup button.

LapBack then encrypts the selected files and stores them on the USB flash drive so that they can only be opened by you. Backing up to CD/DVD or a network location is also possible of course, but with laptops in mind a tiny USB drive is by far the most convenient.

In terms of scheduling, LapBack doesn't interfere with your normal processes. Icons in Windows Explorer indicate whether your marked folders contain files that need backing up. The software keeps only one copy of each file, so it writes new versions of your files over your existing backup. If you need to keep different versions of files, you can use more than one USB drive, although this is a bit impractical.

You can choose to back up your data either manually or by using the wizard. Seeing as the manual method is as straightforward as the wizard, it makes little difference, especially as the Settings menu is exactly the same in both.