Protecting information against data loss takes more than building redundant storage or copying documents to another hard drive. Having a concise backup and recovery plan is what’s needed – and lacking in many organizations, let alone private computer users. This article talks about some measures needed for adequately protecting your data against accidental loss.
Have a Backup Strategy
Occasionally copying data from one hard drive to another just won’t cut it if an accident occurs. If a hard drive fails in your working PC, you’ll wish you had all your files sitting somewhere safe. You’ll want recent copies of your work, too, as duplicating what’s been already done is one of the most boring things on Earth. In a word, you’ll want an accessible, complete, recent backup handy.
For that, you’ll have to have an automated backup system in place that would automatically backup (or at least remind you to back up) your data daily. Don’t worry about storage capacity; you have an option of having incremental backups, so a daily copy of your office work will only take megabytes, not gigabytes of space. Of course, full backups are also needed, but you can make them every week or so.
Have a Recovery Strategy
If something happens to your data, what are the steps you’ll take to restore it from the backup? What if your entire PC fails? Do you have a reasonable recovery strategy? It’s better to think of and write down all the steps necessary to take when data loss occurs. Attempting to recover from a backup in a stress may just as well ruin the backup instead of putting you back on track. Think ahead, plan well ahead.
Use the Right Media
It’s tempting to just use the second hard drive attached to the same PC to hold copies of your data. Bad idea. If something happens to the PC, the other hard drive will likely be just as dead as the main one. Using a secondary drive can be a good idea if it’s going to be your supplementary backup system. Restoring information from such backups is quick and easy, but don’t rely on it solely. Use another storage media (such as DVDs or even BluRay’s) and keep it as far away from your computer as possible.
Having an off-site backup is an even better idea. Backing up data onto a backup system that’s not sitting right next to your main workstation is a perfectly fine way to manage backups.
Better Yet, Use The Cloud
Cloud computing and cloud storage are quickly gaining popularity for a good reason. It’s so easy to restore data from the cloud it’s hard not to jump the bandwagon. Cloud backups are more expensive than in-house solutions, but they may be easily worth it.
Set Up a Data Recovery Tool
Install and familiarize yourself with a data recovery tool. Sometimes it’ll be faster and easier to simply undelete a file rather than trying to get a copy from a day-old incremental backup. A good selection of data recovery tools is available at http://the-undelete.com