Hello SOTGC community,
Your digital data is crucially important to the quality of your life. Imagine losing all of the photos of your children, or your client information, or your financial information.
Most of us know that we have to back up our data, but perhaps you haven’t gotten around to it yet, or you only do it occasionally. If this is something that you’ve been putting off dealing with, then every day you’re putting your data at risk. Fortunately, there continues to be new and easier ways to automate the process, so it won’t take much of your time to set up your backup. Do it today, right after reading this post!
I recommend three copies of your data:
- On your computer storage
- On external storage media
- In the cloud
Backup software automates the process and also allows you to restore your data to your computer should you ever need to. You can use “Time Machine” on the Mac, or “Windows Backup and Restore” on the PC, or the software that comes with your backup device. You should have external media, such as an external hard drive, connected to your computer at the times of your scheduled backups.
If photographs are taking up a large amount of space on your computer hard drive, then they should be archived so that you can free up more space. You can continue to use your internal hard drive for new photos. For example, you can create one photo library on your computer that you’re updating with your recent photos, and a separate photo library that contains your older photos. After moving the archive library to your external media and backing up to your cloud storage, you don’t have to worry about it again.
So why cloud backup as well? It’s insurance, particularly for your most important documents and photos. Your business or homeowners insurance may cover your hardware loss in the case of theft, fire, or other natural disasters, but if both your computer data and your backup is lost, it may be very difficult to recover.
If you already use a cloud service such as Dropbox, SugarSync, or Google Drive, then your cloud backup is taken care of, at least for the data that you have targeted for sync using those services.
For a more complete backup solution, there are cloud backup services that specialize in scheduled, automated backups to the cloud. These services tend to be more reasonably priced than the cloud services mentioned above for large amounts of data. Also, if you have data stored only on external media, such as your photographs that you have archived, only a cloud backup service can support automatic backups of those devices.
Here’s some examples of cloud backup services. Prices are as of May 1, 2014.
Price: $60/year for unlimited storage ($100/year if external drives are included).
Price: $50/year for unlimited storage, including external drives.
Price: $6.95/month for unlimited storage. Support for external drives is extra.
If this post helped with your data backup solutions then please Tweet, Pin, or share on LinkedIn or Facebook to help other with their storage needs.
Patricia Dwyer is a personal technology coach and blogs at http://www.digitalchaoscontrol.com/blog. Did you set up your backup today?? Let Patricia know! – firstname.lastname@example.org.