Sunday, June 29, 2008

Expect A Computer Crash And Back Up Your Important Files Often

You’ve heard horror stories about it, or perhaps you’ve experienced it yourself. Many a working man and woman have nearly gone insane after the disaster that all computer-dependent individuals shiver at the thought of: the great computer crash.

A person can literally lose everything he has saved on his computer in a blink of an eye. The reasons are varied. At times it occurs after an ample amount of warning signs, other times it comes as a complete surprise (making it more disconcerting). When these moments happen – and they do happen, and quite often actually – one can only hope that he has saved his files elsewhere, otherwise, there is little hope that they will be recovered.

Are you scared yet? If you don’t want this to happen to you and your precious files (which I’m almost sure you don’t), read on and find out how to create backups for your many important files.

But first off, if you’re still not convinced of the importance of backing up, here are a few reasons that might convince you.

Top Reasons Why You Should Back Up Your Files

1. One of the few universal truths in life is, no matter how in control you are of your universe, something, someday will inevitably go completely wrong, and usually it is something that will happen beyond your control. The same is true for the files on your computer. No matter how updated and top-of-the-line your hard drive is, it will someday inevitably give up on you and your files.

2. Numerous viruses abound in the computers of individuals around the world – computers that send and receive files through the internet. There are also the numerous floppy disks, CDs and flash drives that connect to your computer. Any one of these can be carriers of a harmful virus that can wipe out the data stored on your computer. If you don’t have a backup for this data, you’re most likely never going to see them again.

3. Power failures are one of the computer’s worst nightmares (which also include running water and becoming obsolete). They happen without notice, especially when the whether is bad. And power failures can just as easily ruin your computer and all the files on it. It is another good reason why you should back up your files.

The bottom line is, it’s better to be safe than to be sorry. There are many ways to bring about a data disaster, and there’s only one way to be prepared for any of them, and that is through backing up your files.

Ways to Back Up Your Files

There are various ways to back up the files on your computer. You can use internet programs and services that allow you to back up your files on a separate server that can be accessed through the internet. You can also use the conventional writable CD-ROM disc, where you can copy, paste, and burn the files on your computer through a no-brainer process. Zip disks are also effective for backing up files, as well as external hard drives.

How to Choose the Data You Should Back Up

When backing up files, you don’t have to copy the entire contents of your computer. Computer programs that you have a CD-ROM installer for often need not have a back up. Here are some of the files that you should definitely have back ups for:

- Bank records and other files that have financial information

- Digital images and pictures

- Software and music files that you downloaded from the Internet

- The contacts of your email address book

- Any other personal projects (essays, research and term papers for students; presentations, documents, and reports for the working folk)

- Important emails

Some Final Reminders on Backing Up Files

Do label your storage materials. If you are using CDs, for instance, be sure to label and file them properly. Back up files are of no use if you can’t find what you are looking for among them – and they’re sure to pile up.

Don’t use floppy disks as permanent storage for your backup files. The data inside them easily get damaged and won’t last long enough to be useful as a back up.

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