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18

Sep

What’s Your Backup Plan?

SafeNo one can deny that we are now, well into the digital age. You store contacts, calendars, emails, passwords, documents, photos, videos, and countless other important data on our computers and mobile devices. I have already covered the topic of backing up information found on our iPads, iPods, and iPhones, and in this post, I’ll cover what you need to think about to create the best backup plan possible.

To put the importance of a proper backup plan into perspective, here is a list of a fraction of the things that can happen to a computer:

• Theft / Loss
• Accidental damage
• Something in the software becomes corrupt over time
• Important photos and documents are accidentally thrown in the trash
• Hardware failure

This is simply a small list of what I have personally witnessed come into the Apple Store during my time working there. Unfortunately, more often than not, the story didn’t have a happy ending. There were those occasions; however, when the customer did have a backup and I was able to help save the day. Both, the good and the bad stories are what motivated me to start my own business. I want to be able to share this knowledge so that you don’t fall victim to such tragic events.

Apple has built Time Machine into every Mac to assist in an easy backup solution. Time machine creates a mirror image of your computer to be stored on an external hard drive. This by far is the easiest solution being that, once you select the proper hard drive, you simply plug it in to the Mac and when prompted, choose to use the hard drive as a Time Machine backup. Time Machine does hourly, daily, and weekly backups so long as the hard drive is connected to the Mac. This is a very easy and automated process. You just plug and play with no dragging and dropping required.

You’ll need to keep in mind, when choosing a hard drive for the backups, it’s important to get one with plenty of space. Time Machine will delete old backups to make space for new ones. The more backups you have, the more thoroughly protected you’re going to be. You also want to think of backing up your backup and even keeping one off-site in case of a burglary or fire. Having more than one backup hard drive also protects you in the event that the external hard drive has hardware failure.

You don’t always need to use Time Machine to back up your information. You can always drag and drop your most important information onto a CD/DVD, external hard drive or use an online backup service. You will find many of these services out there so just know, it’s important to do your homework and even check back with my blog for a post covering these types of services.

We’ve talked briefly about different ways to backup your Mac. When it comes down to it, everyone should follow the 3-2-1 model when it comes to making sure your data is protected:

• Make 3 copies of your data
• Keep the backups in 2 locations
• Keep 1 copy in a secured location

While nothing is a guarantee, this method is likely the best way to ensure you’re not paying hundreds of dollars with the “hope” that a data recovery company can get your information back. If you have any further questions or experiences you’d like to share, feel free to discuss in the comments section. If you’d like to speak to me directly please check out the Contact page.

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