Here's what I use for backing up my Linux files:
I have a file called backup.list containing a list of the folders to back up, one per line, e.g.
Another file called exclude_from_backup.list containing a list of subfolders and files to exclude, e.g.
This is some of it - you will want to add more when you see the list of files whizzing by...
Then a file called backup.sh containing the tar command:
tar -cvzV `date +%Y_%m_%d_%H:%M:%S` -f /home/chris/backup/backup.tar.gz --files-from=/home/chris/backup/backup.list -X/home/chris/backup/excludefrombackup.list
This needs to be executeable, so
chmod 775 /home/chris/backup/backup.sh
All stored in /home/chris/backup/
Run as root (so you can back up any file) by typing
/home/chris/backup/backup.sh and it should write a nice big
backup.tar.gz file to /home/chris/backup/ which I then copy to another
PC or CD.
Works for me...
See here for advice on backing up Microsoft Windows - How to back up your PC