TTW

Making technology work for you.

Welcome to an Article on Backups.

Backup, Backup and Backup Again.

It is simple really, make sure you have a copy of anything that is important to you and you would hate to lose. I was reminded only recently how important this is when one of my hard drives failed. It was a good few years old and it had started making strange noises. I kept saying to myself that I must check it out but before I could it died completely. Not just a case of files not being accessible but the drive itself disappeared from my PC. I switched operating system but still no joy, the drive was no longer recognised. It simply did not exist anymore.
Everyone's nightmare scenario. Fortunately, this particular hard drive was one of my backups, so all I have lost is a copy of everything I keep backed up. I bought a new hard drive, they are so much cheaper and smaller these days there is no excuse not to have a portable one. In twenty minutes I had it plugged in and working and had copies of all my important things saved again.
So what do I backup? Well to be honest I don't back up my entire drive of every computer in the house. I am also not worried about losing an operating system. For two reasons:
First, whenever I buy a PC I insist the manufacturer provides me with a copy of the OS on CD or DVD. Ok, so when I bought my netbook I didn't actually bother. Why? Because the netbook came with Windows 7 starter and Android in a dual boot system. If these fail I accept that I will lose both of these. However, I never use the Windows 7 option and as far as Android is concerned I am fairly sure I can download a copy of the latest version for a netbook should I need it.
Secondly, 99% of the time I run a Linux system these days. I have a copy of Saluki that sits on a flash drive and if that one fails, you guessed I have a second copy.
Finally, the important part, what I do is make sure that every file that is really important to me is copied to a separate hard drive or flash drive. Most of my day to day files are kept on an SD Card in my netbook. I regularly copy them to the hard drive in the netbook and then regularly copy them again onto my new portable hard drive. I repeat the process for all the PCs in the house. So all our music, photos, and documents exist in at least three separate drives. Simple!
Backup, Backup and Backup again.