Back Up Your Data Or Suffer The Consequences

by : Sean Caruthers

Have you ever experienced a hard drive failure? Normally, your data can be recovered from a failed hard drive. Janet, a client experienced her first hard drive failure last spring, this is her story.

Simply stated, Janet's computer overheated. And Janet got the blue screen of death. After the blue screen, her computer would not boot. All of the normal troubleshooting methods were applied to no avail. So, the hard drive was sent out to a data recovery company. The good news is the company recovered 99% of Janet's files. The bad news is it cost her $2,692.50. A data backup routine would have saved Janet a small fortune.

Now take a moment to think about all the documents, spreadsheets, data files, music, pictures and emails that are stored on your computer. Wow! It's really your data that makes your computer indispensable. Your data is a vital asset to your professional and personal life. Unfortunately, many people only realize this after a hard drive crash, virus, or natural disaster destroys their files.

A data backup routine serves two purposes. A data backup routine protects your data. And if you store the backup data properly then it provides disaster recovery.

There are many ways to backup your data. Windows computers include a backup component but you may have to install it. Or you can just burn your data to media such as a DVD or CD. If you require real time backup then your computer can be upgraded to support this. The most important thing is to remember to back up your data periodically. There are no fast and hard rules for this but at least monthly. If you use your computer for business then consider backing up data weekly or even daily.

Once you create a backup, you have to store it in a safe place. A properly stored backup provides a disaster recovery benefit. In the unlikely event of a fire, flood, theft, or other calamity, you would want some distance between the computer and its backup. For routine data, you could store the backup in another room in your home. If the data is confidential, business related, or truly irreplaceable then store it in a fire proof box. You can purchase a fire proof box for your important papers and data for a few hundred dollars. If you just want a greater measure of physical security then store it in a bank safety deposit box.

A data backup routine will protect your data, provide disaster recovery, and may potentially save you a bundle of cash. Remember to back up your data periodically. As a matter of fact, go make a back up now.