Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Well it's Twenty Ten, 2010 time to Backup

Well it's Twenty Ten, 2010..... and time marches on.. & on. Although, technology is more & more approaching the "Jetsons" lol In actual fact, really, we are nowhere near that "Level", yet.

Now don't get me wrong I'm not knocking anything, simply stating a fact. With that said though, we still have made amazing technological achievements, but really it seems that a lot of the things meant to help us. and make our lives easier, in fact, actually seem to complicate things.

More and more people are relying on their technology to offset having to actually DO things. In fact, if any, of these devices, that one relies on so much, mucks up or fails, then lives are thrown into turmoil as they haven't a copy, or a "Back-up", of all their important data, facts, figures, phone numbers, contact details, etc. If these precious cargo's are lost, a considerable amount of collateral damage can occur.

So what is the answer... ? simple.. BACKUP... make sure you have a copy of every item of yours that has a memory.... from the Cell Phone, PDA, to the humble PC. Now this may seem like a daunting task, but it doesn't have to be at all. OK, so how do we do it?

We shall start by accruing the "Tools" we shall need. Now one of the things that is amazing is Memory .. no not yours, but the silicon version, in particular, Flash Drive memory. Memory sticks, Flash Drives, USB "Drives" They are available in anything from >256MB to <32GB & are relatively inexpensive. Now to my mind these are the new floppy disk, CD/DVD. I believe they are the ideal storage medium to backup all of the data you just can't afford to loose.

Now depending on the amount of data you need to backup will dictate the size you need. 1GB, & 2GB are probably the handiest, they are cheap and easy to find and use. I would buy them 5 - 10 up depending on the amount of data you need to store. Recently a store near us was having a promotion with USB 2, 2GB Flash drives for under ten bucks, so I bought 10 of them. That's 200GB of "Flash" storage for under a hundred bucks... smile.gif

The software links below, are for Phone SIM, Hard Drive, & PDA Backups. & A Flash Formatter. They are all Freeware and just plain work. <> <> <> <> <>

Now the software above is not the be-all-and-end-all... it is simply a example of what is needed. There are heaps of great programs that will do what we want, some free some to be purchased whichever one you choose make sure you can understand and use it, often a friend will recommend a software that they them-self use, now, this may indeed be suitable for you too, with the added plus that your friend will be able to show you how to use it.

Ok now that we have our software, we must install it, and put it to use. I would also suggest that one gets oneself a Dymo or similar label maker. This is so that you can annotate the USB drive with the contents for quick identification.

Now remember that generally you only want to backup your DATA only. NOT, the Operating System. So the amount of initial data will dictate the size of USB drive you will use, but I find the handy 2GB ones ideal.

Also it is possible to get a USB portable Hard Drive, right up to a Terabyte, and this too, can be used for backups, some even come with software pre-installed to automatically backup your system whenever it is connected. These are especially useful if there are huge amounts of data to be backed up.

So basically it is: Format your drive with tool provided, fire up the relevant software you are going to use to Backup. Following the instructions of your preferred Backup Software As an aside here although links have been provided for Software to backup, there is a simpler way. The good old windows copy & paste. This can be used in almost all situation for simply copying files.

But it is indeed preferable to use software that compresses and incrementally backs up automatically, as this removes the human error part.

Now there is another novel way to backup which actually doesn't require anything except a connection to the internet. It is web based backup,now this may cost a small fee. but I feel that it would be well worth the cost, simply for the peace of mind that is afforded. I have found a good information article here >

This is probably the most "Modern" approach to backing up, and I feel that it will be the future indeed. If one goes this way one don't need to carry round a bundle of flash drives. Simply hop on the net run the software and your back in business.

If however you don't trust the Web or are afraid of privacy matters then I guess that the Flash drive method is for you.

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