A few basic questions from a new user - backups, moving files, sharing

I'm a Mac user considering getting an iPad. I'm hoping someone can clue me in to some basic aspects of the experience:
1) are backups easy? can you "clone" it (the way I do with my desktop and laptop) so that everything (content, settings, preferences, etc.) can be restored exactly in the event something happens to it?
2) how does one move files to it? Specifically, PDFs - I have a ton of PDFs I plan to be reading on this thing. Does it show up as a drive (drag-and-drop) when connected to my desktop machine, or does it work through a special conduit or? Does it have a filesystem we can see?
3) is there any notion of "users" - can multiple people share it and have their own sets of preferencs settings/content?
4) is the iPad 2 date still best estimated as April? I need it for a trip in mid-March and I don't want to buy the 1st model if the second is coming out shortly thereafter. Is there any likelihood of having it be available in the first week of March? If not, is there a good place (on-line) to rent one for a week perhaps?
thanks in advance!
Mike

1, yes they are easy, but they are not a clone. When connected to iTunes on your computer you just tell it to backup. That will backup your notes, settings, app data, but not synced data (i.e. not your music, films or contacts and calendars synced from your computer).
2, via iTunes, not as a drive. PDFs can be dragged into iTunes and then synced to the iPad to go into the (free downloadable) iBooks app. Alternatively you can buy an app like Goodreader which allows you to transfer PDFs wirelessly from your computer (can also be used to read/store PDFs emailed as attachments).
3, no. There is only one set of options. If you have children (or even other adults) then you can set a passcode to restrict access to, for example, Safari, iTunes, or the ability to install and delete other apps. But it's basically a single user setup.
4, speculation as to what Apple may, or may not, be planning is prevented by the terms of use of these forums. All that can be said here is that no new version has been announced, and when/if one is it will be on the apple.com frontpage. You should ask yourself whether the current one meet most, if not all, of your requirements, not whether some unannnounced item might.

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