Voice of experience: Back up your #%$& computer
Man, what a dope I am.
I have backup software – three different brands, actually – installed on a laptop I use mostly for work. So what happens? The hard drive dies.
When I'm not even doing anything. Ok, I had just installed Google Earth so I could figure out how it works.
I lost no data, because I stored it on external hard drives, and I have those backed up a couple different places.
But I just lost most of two days finding and reinstalling software. Windows. Office. Mapping software. Antivirus software and the infinity of updates for a fresh install.
I know it’s smart to make backups. I know this as thoroughly as I know my name.
So why didn’t I make a full backup of the hard drive?
Because I’m a dope. I didn’t have time. I satisfied myself with making copies of the files I needed. The documents. That’s better than nothing.
But look: Your hard drive will fail. It’s going to happen. And when it does, it will not be at a convenient time.
So make a backup. Make a backup of the backup. And repeat the exercise at intervals that make sense based on your usage of your machine. Weekly, monthly, whatever seems right: make a schedule and stick to it.
And make copies of your data on a separate hard drive, too.
This is not difficult. It’s a matter of training yourself, of believing this is important enough to command your attention. And really, there’s no excuse. Storage can be had for so little. Tuesday, newegg.com had a 1TB external hard drive for $52.99. That will probably hold the backups of three machines, maybe more, depending on what’s on the machines. I have backups of my desktop and this laptop and together they take about 300 gigs of space.
If your time isn’t valuable, then don’t back up.
If it is valuable, then act like it.
Really: do you want to be as dumb as I?