If you are a heavy computer user like me I’m sure you feel the odd apprehension about computer crashes and data loss every now and then. Trouble is that most often we tend to think about these things and then promptly forget about them a minute later.

Then, when the unthinkable happens and our computer crashes for good we wish we would have acted sooner and backed up our essential data.

Have you ever been in this situation? If you have, you know how utterly at a loss you felt. Losing important data is a nightmare at best. The worst kind of data to lose in my eyes are photos and videos. These can never be replaced once they are gone as we can’t go back in time and re-create those special moments.

Therefore, do yourself a favor right now and back up your photos and videos ASAP.

I know how annoying this is as my laptop died late last year from one day to the next. Luckily for me, I did have a back up and I’m thankful I did because I was able to replace my laptop and still keep my treasured collection of computer data at the same time.

If you are new to backing up, then have a look at the next few tips to help you choose a suitable back up solution. In the worst case scenario, you will be able to salvage your own data and be glad for it.

File back up

Backing up computer files and folders is very easy these days. Even computer novices can do this with the help of an external hard drive. These come with easy installation description and often just need to be plugged in after a driver has been installed. There are various ways in which you can back up.

  • Mozy: Mozy is an online back up solution that sits on a online server and safely stores your data by means of industry strength encryption. The one draw back of Mozy is the first initial very long back up. It takes ages and could be the one reason why you don’t choose this way of back up.
  • External hard drive: These get cooler by the minute. I actually own two of them because I’m quite frantic about losing my back up too. So I back up my back up to have an extra safety net. If you are worried about size, look at your behavior and how much you really work with your computer. Just to give you an idea. I work online full time and have a 500GB and one 120GB back up drive which is ample. For those of you who download movies and need them to back up, you need way more space.
  • Thumb drives: Thumb drives are not essentially meant for backing up data for long period of times. But when it comes to moving files between office and home, or while on holidays, then they are unbeatable.

Back up your email

Backing up email can be a life saver. Especially if you use a local version of a desktop application such as Outlook, or Windows mail. I have found the best way to do this is by using Gmail and IMAP. If you click on the link you will find just how easy this is.

Not only that, but if you synchronize the two accounts with each other, you can also have the latest version on either side.

Browse back up

It is possible to back up all your bookmarks and passwords plus login details on your browser. This will be helpful if you ever need to download a new version of Windows.

If you use Firefox, then FEBE is your best bet really. It backs up your Firefox extensions, passwords, cookies and bookmarks for you.

For those of you with IE, you too can back up your stuff with the help of this.

Do it now!

Back up now! Don’t wait for tomorrow as tomorrow could be too late. Once you get in the habit of backing up once a day, week or month (depending on frequency of usage), you will be glad you did when the worst happens.

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