I reformat occasionally to clean out all the built up junk and speed things up. The process of backing things up and getting them all set up again takes awhile. Every time I find myself worried that I will forgot something important and discover it only after I’ve hit the “Format Disk” button and blown past the warnings about deleted information.
Backup Magic automates and simplifies the process by allowing you to select certain folders to mirror on an external drive somewhere. I can set things up once and then periodically (or automatically on a cron job) run these backups. Just as easily, I can create another job to restore the backed up files/directories to their original location after a format (dead hard drive, sibling abuse, virus infestation, etc.).
Free to use. Pay if you really like it. Backup Magic