A quick heads-up: Your laptop is going to break down. One day you’ll walk into the room, hit the power button, and see a screen of errors (if it even loads up at all). If not that, the likelihood of it being stolen, crashing, a hard drive failure, or even just accidentally deleting a bunch of files is very likely.
You need a backup plan.
And you need it BEFORE things go wrong.
It’s not if, but when!
Many of you have experienced data loss before, and if not… you will. This can be a devastating event, but proper backups can turn these events into a mere inconvenience.
How to Back up
There are several different options for backing up your computer. Some of your choices include: backing up locally to an external hard drive (this would be an outside hard drive plugged into your laptop), a network drive (a hard drive plugged into your router), or an online backup service.
Ideally, you would want all three and then some! In the IT world, they like to talk about redundancy a lot (much like how you should have multiple reporters and they should have multiple scopists). By having multiple backups, you can decrease the chances of anything catastrophic happening.
For now, though, let’s focus on getting you a cloud backup solution. There are numerous services out there that allow you to back up your computer to the internet, but we’ll cut right through all that research (I’ve done it for you) and recommend Carbonite. This will allow you to back up your entire computer to a remote computer in a distant location.
Some Perks of Using Carbonite
- Lose or Accidentally delete a file?
No problem. You can recover a lost file from your computer for 30 days.
- Computer Just Died? (or disappears)Get a new computer, log into Carbonite and click “Restore” and your computer will be back up and good to go!
- Even revert changes! If you’re a Windows user, Carbonite saves three months of previous versions of your files, so if you need to revert back to a previous copy then you can. If you use their personal prime service, you can even have a copy of your backup shipped to your door if you lost your internet connection or it’s too slow to recover your whole backup.
- Also, access your files anywhere!
You can view and access your files from any phone, tablet, or computer!
What’s it Cost?
Carbonite starts at $59 per year for unlimited backup on one computer. The Plus plan ($99/year) gives you phone support and will back up to an external hard drive (local and redundancy!). $149 gives you the Prime plan, which also includes a courier service which will ship your backup to your door if the need arises (handy if you have slow internet).
This is not something to do tomorrow. Tomorrow is always tomorrow. Do it this evening. If you just can’t break away from your transcripts, do it this weekend. This will save you so much time in the future.