Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Tidbit Tuesday - Back up your files

Terra here with a new tidbit for you. While visiting with friends and families over the holidays I heard a horror story - one of my relatives lost all of her pictures of her 3 year old son that she had taken since the day he was born. I was devastated for her. The sad thing is that a lot of people don't think about backing up their photos and other important files until something catastrophic happens. I know that I don't want that to happen to me and I don't want it to happen to any of you either. So for today's tidbit I am going to remind you of some ways to back up your files.


Make sure that you always have at least 2 copies of any irreplaceable file. Here are some of the options available to you:
  1. Burn to CD/DVD - These disks are inexpensive and often readily available and are a good choice for quick backups. However, I have heard that they have a relatively short shelf life (6-7 years) and are vulnerable to scratches etc.
  2. Save to an external drive - External drives are so much cheaper than they were in the past and I thoroughly believe that everyone should have one as part of their computer system. You can get a good 500 GB drive for under $100 (or even less if you shop around for a good deal). My external drive backs up my important files automatically and setting it up was so easy. Another option is to purchase a USB drive to specifically save important files. The only drawback is the size of USB drives. I just know that I would lose it in no time.
  3. Use an online storage service - There are so many options available when it comes to storing files online. I believe that it is important to save important files to an offsite location - in case of theft or natural disaster - and online storage is extremely secure these days. If you are interested in storing any type of file, Mozy is an inexpensive option that allows automated backups. However, if you are only interested in backing up photos, I recommend using a photo storage service like Smugmug. Note that you should never use your web host for file backup as it may violate your web hosting agreement.
These are just some options for backing up your important files. I encourage you to do some research before deciding which backup method is right for you. Don't wait until you lose your files to make backing up a habit!

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As a creative team member for several digital scrapbook designers, I have received their products for free in return for creating and posting projects (digital layouts, hybrids projects, etc). Many of the layouts you see here were done in conjunction with requirements for these creative teams. Please be advised that the products used were indeed received for free.
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