Just like death and taxes are a certainty, the fact that your computer’s Hard Drive will crash one day and refuse to respond, is every bit as certain.
Computer industry statistics seem to indicate that the real-world annualized failure rate (average percentage of disks failing per year), was much higher than the manufacturer’s estimate – an average of 3% vs. the estimated 0.5 – 0.9%. The cost of recovering data from a failed hard drive can exceed $7,500, and success is never guaranteed.
So when that inevitable day arrives, what will you do?
If you are one of the few, out of the ordinary, computer users who regularly and faithfully backup, you will have a lot of work ahead of you but you will recover.
However, if you haven’t backed up, you have lost everything including:
- operating system
- customized settings
- email accounts, rules/filters, folders and messages
- data including, letters, graphics, music, databases/other projects
The operating system and applications can be replaced, if you have the original install media. But not all computers with preinstalled operating systems have the original operating system installation media supplied with the computer.
The message here then is: everything that can not be replaced needs to be backed up.
It’s now easier than ever to backup giving the large choice of relatively inexpensive media, including CDs, DVDs, USB sticks, external Hard Drives, and increasingly gaining popularity, Online Backup Services.
Perhaps the most popular of these free Online Backup Services is Mozy: Free Online Backup.
Mozy, which requires a broadband connection, is a free and easy to use, software service that gives you 2GB of space allowing you to backup your data over the Internet. When needed, the backed up files can be restored over the Internet.
Mozy includes a Windows Explorer context menu which makes restoring files very easy. Right click on the file you want to restore, and Mozy gives you a list of all previous versions of the file. As well, Mozy incorporates a virtual drive explorer in Windows that allows you to view the files you’ve backed up without having to access the Internet.
If you are not familiar with backup software, or you’re not comfortable with XP’s version, then Mozy might well be the ideal tool for you. Check it out.
Mozy Quick Facts:
- Open/locked file support
- 448-bit Blowfish encryption
- 128-bit SSL encryption
- Automatic or scheduled backups
- New and changed file detection
- Block level incremental backups
- Bandwidth throttling
- File versioning
- Public or private key encryption
Download at: Mozy
Additional Free Online Backup Sites:
XDrive – XDrive supplies you with 5 GB of space. The backup software runs on Windows, and provides automatic backups of your data.
IDrive Basic – 2 GB of backup space Free Online Backup, Encrypted, Secure and Automated.
Humyo – Humyo allows you to store up to 25 GB of media files (photos, videos, music) and 5 GB for non-media files.