Backing up your data is probably the most important thing you should do to maintain your computer. However, it is also one of the most misunderstood topics, and therefore, many people neglect to properly back up their data. In an effort to help people back up their data, I will summarize a very simple but effective backup routine.
Basically, instead of messing with media like CDs or DVDs, external hard drives are much simpler. They are relatively inexpensive and can hold many times more data than a CD, DVD, or most other removable media. Purchase an external hard drive that is bundled with backup software. Most backup software that are bundled with external hard drives are very simple to set up. Set up your software to automatically back up on a schedule, and you should be all set. Check your backup software’s logs every so often to ensure that the backups are running correctly.
For further data redundancy and peace of mind, buy 2 external hard drives. Periodically swap the drives and take one off site (for example, to a safety deposit box). This way, if your home or business suffers from a disaster such as fire or theft, you will have a backup in another location.
There are many brands of external hard drives. I feel more comfortable recommending well-known brands such as Seagate and Western Digital. However, any brand is better than having no backup at all.
If you already have an external hard drive, but no backup software, I recommend Retrospect Express HD (http://www.emcinsignia.com/products/homeandoffice/retroexpresshd). It only costs $50, is very simple to use, and you can download it immediately after ordering it on line. Even if your hard drive came with backup software, but it doesn’t backup on a schedule or you just aren’t satisfied with it, you can buy Retrospect Express HD.
The bottom line is that your data can be gone in the blink of an eye. Don’t put off backing up any longer. If you would like help setting up your backup, please feel free to contact me.