The Importance Of Backing Up Your Data
Let’s first build a picture to help you better understand the reality of data loss because many people do not realize what you can potentially lose when a hard drive crashes, a virus attacks your system, or when other types of disasters strike your system.
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You power on your computer one day and you get “BOOT FAILURE. PLEASE REBOOT”.. you restart several times.. you receive the same message. That’s ok.. You can just take it to a repair shop.. They check it out, and they tell you your hard drive has failed, and is unrepairable.
What can you do? Sure, you can spend $500.00 – $2500.00 to get your hard drive data extracted by a company that specializes in that, but suppose this company cannot extract your data? Total Loss. Nothing. Nada. Your data is gone. The grimm reality sets in.
My Data Isn’t Important… Or Is It?
For many, they don’t believe that their data is important. They figure that since they don’t run a business that there is nothing they have to worry about… or is there? here is just a small list of what you can potentially lose:
? Favorites/Bookmarks (Oh well right? You’ll just have to build up possibly years of collected websites again)
? Downloaded Applications (Downloadable again right? Think again. After all, most likely the information so you CAN download them again is lost as well.)
? Downloads (E-books, Games, PDF’s, documents, etc… Do you even remember what you had?)
? E-mails (How many years of saved e-mails did you lose? WOW!!)
? Documents, Spreadsheets, Presentations (Research, Notes, School Docs, College Papers?)
? Financial Data (Quicken, MS Money, Quickbooks, etc.)
And that’s just your stuff.. Did your spouse or children have their own profiles with their data on it that was lost also? Most people don’t even think about everything that they will potentially lose if they do not do regular backups and then find themselves in mental anguish over everything they’ve lost…. when they realize all of what they’ve lost.
Back Up Your Data Today
Before we talk about how to backup your PC, we need to talk about WHAT to backup on your PC. First, you have to determine how much space you need in order to choose an effective backup solution built to suit your needs. No one backup solution is right for everyone.
First, if you save everything into your “My Documents” folder, it makes backing up really simple. You can even make a “downloads” folder in your “My Documents” folder to save things you download.
You can simply open your “My Documents” folder and click “Edit” and then Click “Select All”. Next, right click on a file or folder and click on “Properties”. This will show you your file size (Mine is 10.5GB so you can see a 1GB flash drive or 700MB CD would not work without multiple disks).
Using The Windows Backup & Restore Utility
For those more experienced pc users, another option would be to utilize the windows backup and restore utility. Although this may sound a bit overwhelming, the process isn’t as difficult as one would imagine.
Dave Kingsbury from BetaFlux videos has put together one of the most comprehensive tutorials on using this utility that we have ever seen. To watch, click the play button below:
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Other Things To Backup
Here are a few search terms to help you find other things to back up in order to remain Windows Version independent.
Favorites – Search your C: drive for “favorites” (open the folder to make sure it contains your favorites)
Bookmarks (FireFox) – Search for “bookmarks.html” (open the file to make sure it contains your bookmarks)
Outlook Express – Search for “Outlook Express”. This will find a folder. Open the folders and make sure it contains your E-mail folders. If you have never created subfolders in Outlook Express (OE), now would be a good time to so that you can find your e-mail to back it up. If you create a folder called “test” in OE, it will be in the appropriate folder as “test.dbx”.
Address Book – search on “*.wab” – dbl-click to see if it has your contacts.
Microsoft Outlook – Do a search on “outlook.pst” – You can dbl-click it to see if it has your mail, contacts, etc.
Always check file sizes – Add them up at the end. How much data have you got to backup?
Possible Backup Devices:
Floppy Disk – 1.44MB (Do they make these anymore?)
CD – (700MB) – cheap solution. Under .10 each.
Flash Drive (Range in Size from 256MB to 8GB) $10.00 – $200.00
Zip Disk (250MB-750MB — Are these still around?)
External Hard Drive – You can get a 160GB drive for under $100.00
Reduce System Crashes With SpeedyPC!
System crashes are certainly something we all should worry about. By keeping your PC clean and error free, we can reduce these risks greatly. One way is to use SpeedyPC to scan and clean your PC regularly!