A Backup Plan

How important is your data?  Do you have a backup strategy?

Backup Article - Bert RolstonThe reasons to backup data are as varied as the reasons why people utilise computers, but whether it is for home and personal use or for business purposes, everone should have a backup strategy.

Your IT Services computer technician Bert Rolston says data/information should be reliably backed up to ensure it can be recovered in case of an emergency.

“The most imprtant part of a computer is the information on the hard drive,” he says. “Without that your computer is nothing more than a boat anchor.  Whoever uses the computer will know which files and programmes are important. For a business, this could be their accounts package and document templates, while for a home user, it could be their videos and family pictures.”

Bert says the range of backup options depends on how much data there is and how long someone is prepeared to have their computer out of action.

“Back up devices include memory sticks, CDs, DVDs and portable hard drives, which can hold lots of information.

Memory sticks, CDs and DVDs aren’t recommended because of their unknown life span. A lot depends on the quality of the device or disk. If you are going to use these media, use a reputable brand.”

The decision on how often to back up data is based on the risk of losing the data. Bert recommends businesses back up their data on to a portable hard drive at least once a week.

“The most popular method is called ‘Grandfather/Father/Son.’ This involves rotating three external hard drives so that the data will restore to any day within the last week, any week within the last month and any month within the last year.  It is recommended the grandfather and father hard drives be stored off-site until required.  External hard drives are the easiest to recover information from.”

Bert says a cloud database is more suited for business use, depending on how much information needs to be stored.

“If you are going to use a cloud database, ensure it is with a reputable provider so your data is secure.”

Since this article came out, Your IT Services is now offering a monitored online backup service for business and home users.  You can read about it here or on the menu under products.  Please contact us if you’d like to know more.