So lets talk about backups for a minute. I’m willing to bet a lot of you don’t really do any data backup. If your computer were to mysteriously blow up you would probably lose all the documents and family photos you never got around to uploading to Facebook. To some of you that’s no big deal, but to others this could cause a huge head ache. There are a couple of options no matter what operating system you are using.
First and probably the easiest, is purchase an external hard drive. These days (if you’re running windows) they come with software that will automatically back up what folders you desire on a scheduled time table. This is great for a desktop you leave running all the time as you can set if to back up when you aren’t usually using it. This can be slightly problematic for laptops as it’s not left on all the time and could miss a backup. The software is smart enough to back up once you connect to hard drive again but who wants to carry that around with them all the time?
What I personally use the most is the cloud solution. I know you hear a lot about “the cloud” now a days but very few people actually know what it means. That’s a discussion for a whole other post, but in short it’s a computer that lives somewhere else. There are many services that will essentially do the same thing as that external hard drive software does, but the data will back up to their servers. This is great for those laptops that are on the go. It allows you to back up anytime you have an internet connection. The only downside to this is that it usually has a monthly fee associated to it. But don’t despair there is another free solution out there that you can use!
There are services that will create a folder on your computer that sync with their server. Instead of you picking which folders get backed up you put your files into their folder. Two that I recommend are DropBox and Box.com. Both have clients for Windows and Mac OS and Dropbox even works on Linux. I use my DropBox folder as a “My Documents” folder. The only drawback is you are only given a limited amount for free space. You can of course pay for more if you find this solution to your liking.
If all this seems overwhelming or you want help setting up any of these solutions please feel free to contact me!