This article learns to keep your computer and personal data more secure.
There are many ways you can unintentionally lose information on a computer. A child playing the keyboard like a piano, a power surge, lightning, floods. And sometimes equipment just fails.
If you regularly make backup copies of your files and keep them in a separate place, you can get some, if not all, of your information back in the event something happens to the originals on your computer.
Deciding what to back up is highly personal. Anything you cannot replace easily should be at the top of your list. Before you get started, make a checklist of files to back up. This will help you determine what to back up, and also give you a reference list in the event you need to retrieve a backed-up file. Here are some file suggestions to get you started:
If you haven't already decided where you want to store your backup copies external hard disk drive, CDs, DVDs, or some other storage format and you want to know more about your options, you can read about the types of external storage available.
There are many ways to minimize loss of data:
Periodically backup your data onto some other media such as hard disk drive, CD/DVD disc, ZIP disk, streamer tape, floppy disk and so on; (Occasionally check backups to see if they can be restored.)
The primary rule is to backup your data. The more often you backup your data, the smaller the chances you will lose your valuable data.
The following are examples of data backup techniques:
Choosing an external storage format to back up files
External storage refers to any type of backup format that isn't on your computer. This can be a piece of hardware, software, or even a Web service. There are many types of external storage available, so when choosing external storage, weigh cost and convenience against the amount of information you're backing up.
Whether you use the Windows Backup utility or some other backup software, you'll need a place to store your backup copies. Below are some storage formats to consider. If you can, use a storage system that gets your information out of the house or office.
|Storage Type||What It Is||Pros||Cons|
|External drives such as Iomega drives:
Zip drive (up to 750MB) for the casual user
Hard disk drive (up to 250 GB) for the heavy user
|A Zip drive is a disk drive developed by Iomega that uses removable disks (Zip disks) to store hundreds of megabytes of data.||Includes backup software.
Range of storage options.
|You must invest in the hardware, and in some cases, disks as well.|
*You need a CD-RW drive to burn files onto CDs.
|A CD-RW is a compact disc onto which you can burn information if you have a CD-RW drive. (RW stands for "read-write.")||Many newer computers come with a built in CD-RW drive
CD-RW discs can hold up to 700MB.
|You need to buy a CD-RW drive if your computer doesn't come with one
Can be tricky to get just the right amount of information onto a disc.
*You need a DVD-RW drive to burn files onto DVDs.
A DVD-RW is a DVD onto which you can burn information if you have a DVD-RW drive. (RW stands for "read-write.")
|One disc stores gigabytes of information.||You need to buy a DVD-RW drive if your computer doesn't come with one.
The drive may not come with back-up software.
Online backup and storage such as Iomega iStorage
|An online storage service lets you save files online. If you have Internet access, you can get your files from the online storage site whenever you need.||
Automatically gets your information out of the house or office.
|You may be required to pay a monthly fee for backing up and storing your files.
If the company's servers go down, you may not be able to access your files.
If the company is hacked, your information could be stolen
If the company goes out of business, you lose your back-up resource.
Do not forget to backup your data! Reliable Windows backup software for business and home users.
Data encryption is used only to protect the data from reading and copying (stealing) but will not protect it from being lost.
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