Importance of Backups

Written by Grant McNamara

A backup isrepparttar term used to describe copying files from your computer's hard drive to another medium such as a tape or compact disk. The resulting backup can then be stored somewhere away fromrepparttar 107837 computer. We should do this periodically in case our original files are lost in some way. The most common causes of files being lost include theft of computers, accidental errors we make, and hardware faults.

I was reminded ofrepparttar 107838 need for backups earlier this week through a conversation with a friend. He runs a small computer shop and repair business. Whilst I was there a customer came in and left a nicely wrapped bottle of wine and said a hearty 'thanks', then left. My curiosity piqued I asked why their customer was so greatful. It turned out thatrepparttar 107839 previous week something had gone wrong with his computer's hard disk and he had brought it in for repair. Howeverrepparttar 107840 owner had no backup, and was terribly worried that he had lost all his data. The shop staff managed to correctrepparttar 107841 fault and 'save' his data; hence his relief and appreciation. My friend then told me that it was a daily occurence, and showed me some ofrepparttar 107842 numerous gifts people had given in thanks.

But for many people their experience wasn't as fortunate. Sadly for many people who have hard disk faults, unless they have a backup all of their files are lost.

Keep A Diary Of Your Computer

Written by Grant McNamara

Keeping a diary of your computer can be a valuable asset if something goes wrong. Imagine for a momentrepparttar consequences if your hard drive failed or worse, someone stole your computer. And whilst having a reliable and recent backup is an essential step on your way to recovery, having a diary is a major advantage.

If you use a computer for your business then like me your computer has probably become a tool that you rely on. I am inrepparttar 107836 internet business and frankly without my computer I am out of business. Picturerepparttar 107837 consequences to your business and your livelihood if suddenly you arrived home to findrepparttar 107838 place on your desk where your computer was a blank space.

Thieves love computers. They are reasonably portable, and readily salable. Ifrepparttar 107839 owner stores all their CDs in an attractive rack close by, that's easy to carry away too, and allrepparttar 107840 betterrepparttar 107841 price.

So why would you keep a diary, what is a diary, what does it contain?

Why keep a diary?

Let's assume worse case; you're computer is stolen. Replacing it is reasonably simple; a visit torepparttar 107842 local PC shop and in all likelihood a far better (and cheaper) machine than you had before. But now you haverepparttar 107843 new computer home, how are you going to set it up so that you can have all ofrepparttar 107844 things you had before? Your email messages for example, that proposal you were writing for Monday's deadline, and that E-Book that you're halfway through and will make a fortune in six months time.

You'll have probably had a dozen or more projects in progress (can you remember what they all were?). What about your web site andrepparttar 107845 software you use to make changes to it? And there may be accounting records for debtors, inventory and purchases.

Most backups don't include software. Backups are almost invariably copies ofrepparttar 107846 data files. My message is that as well as restoring all of your data, you also need to restore your 'software environment'. Without this you can't work with your data.

Sorepparttar 107847 purpose of a diary is to keep a track of what your software and hardware environment is made up of.

What is a diary and what does it contain?

I have a simple notebook in which I enter changes that are made torepparttar 107848 physical computer (it's hardware) and but especially changes or additions torepparttar 107849 software. There is a single page for each component (software and hardware ofrepparttar 107850 machine).

For example if you needed to install a new software program then you would create a new page heading and make a diary entry ofrepparttar 107851 purchase. This would includerepparttar 107852 name ofrepparttar 107853 software product, version, and where it was sourced, date and payment method. Some software has a serial number so this should also be recorded. And if you registerrepparttar 107854 software also keep a note ofrepparttar 107855 date and method of registration.

The source of software might have beenrepparttar 107856 purchase of a CD from a shop in which case recovery is a simple matter (assuming you've keptrepparttar 107857 CD somewhere safe). But if you download software, orrepparttar 107858 CD was stolen with your computer, then getting another copy and reinstalling can be difficult and frustrating.

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