If you have already lost your data as a result of a hard drive failure and had to get your information recovered, your next question may be “how do I keep from having to go through this again?” It’s a question we hear all the time. The answer is simple, but you might not like it.
Backup – Backup – Backup
Saying backup – backup – backup isn’t because we are trying to drill it into your head, we are stressing the point of having multiple backups. In a perfect world you would have at least 3 backups of your data. If you just want to get by however, then you would want to have two backups as the bare minimum.
Let’s clarify what constitutes a backup. If you generate a file on one computer, and back it up to an external hard drive, you essentially have two copies of the file, but you only have one single backup. What you need to do then, is have at least one more device or location, in which to store a secondary backup (which would give you 3 total copies of the file). If you really want to cover all your bases, then it would be wise to have a third device or location in which to store your data. Yes it’s tedious, and yes it can be time consuming.
Where To Backup Your Data
Finding a place to backup your information really depends on how much data you have. If you have a few hundred megabytes of data, such as a QuickBooks File, then you have plenty of options…CD’s, DVD’s, small USB thumb drives, free online backup solutions, etc.
If you are dealing with hundreds, or even thousands of Gigabytes of data, then you may need a different approach that is both affordable and effective. You will most likely need to back your data up to a series of external hard drives. This is where it gets to be time consuming.
If you really want to protect your data, keep it backed up on at least 2 devices, one of which is always housed in a different location, either on a remote hard drive or some type of Cloud backup service. This way if something catastrophic happens, such as a fire or flood, you won’t be losing your primary data source and your backups.
When considering what solution will work best for you, you have to keep in mind, what will it cost you in time and resources if you were to lose your data? Does the extra time required to keep your information safe, worth the effort if you were to lose it permanently?