Backup Your Data
What methods are used for
backing up data?
Hard drives fail, computers get stolen, viruses destroy data and
catastrophes can happen. Backing up your important data is an
inexpensive form of insurance. Computers and applications can be
replaced. Most data (documents, photographs, financial data,
music, etc.) cannot be replaced. Good backup procedures include
Backup often. (How much new stuff can you afford to
Use automatic backup if possible. (Because we tend to
Store backups off site. (Odds are against a catastrophe
from happening in two places.)
Use more than one method. (Sometimes backups fail.)
What data needs to be backed up?
Most people need to back up the following:
Financial data including Quicken or QuickBooks Typically
stored in "C:\Users\user
name." Quickbooks is now online or stored in the Public
folder by default.
Email unless using web-based email such as Yahoo,
Hotmail, AOL or Gmail. Outlook is typically stored in
Possibly "Public" if that folder is used for data.
Any other data that you may need.
- Documents, Desktop, Favorites, Pictures, Music, and
Videos folder for each user. Typically stored in "C:\Users\
Some other programs may store data in their own folder or
some other folder. Make sure you know where the data is stored
or it won’t get backed up.
What methods are available to use?
From the most to the least expensive, these are the best
- Backup to online storage such as Carbonite.com. Only
$89/year per computer.
- Flash memory stick. (2 are needed to keep one off-site.)
Windows Backup is free and can be used to backup
automatically. This will work if your flash drive can hold
all your data.
- External Hard drives (2 are needed to keep one
off-site.) Windows Backup is free and can be used to backup
- If you use Microsoft 365, set up One Drive and make sure
all your data is stored there. (Not technically a backup,
but is better than nothing.)
- Backup to another computer on your home or business
Occasionally test the backups to make sure they are working.
You should use any combination of two of these as the best
practice. Remember, backups can fail, too.
If you need any help with this or other computer issues,
please feel free to call me.
Most computer problems are a result
of poor security practices!
Nice to Know: