If you are like most computer owners these days, you’ll have numerous files, pictures, and documents stored on your computer’s hard drive. Items like you tax documents, bank statements, and digital pictures may all have a permanent home on your computer.
But when was the last item you backed up the important files, documents, and pictures on your computer?
Reasons to Back it Up
One of the main reasons to back up your computer is to save yourself the stress, anxiety, and hassle of having to recover the files on your computer after a potential data loss. If you have valuable tax documents, digital family pictures and other meaningful files, it’s wise to take the necessary steps to protect them.
Here are some other reasons why you should back up your computer files:
- Computer Theft – Do you take your computer to public places like the bus, a cafe, or the local library? Consider backing up your files because losing an entire laptop to theft means you might never get those files back.
- Computer Crashes & Damages – Computer crashes and damage tend to come at the most unexpected times. Let’s say you are drinking your morning coffee and typing away on your computer. What happens if you accidentally spill your coffee onto your computer?
- Ransomware – We’ve talked about ransomware before – basically, they’re aggressive viruses that put a lock on your files, requiring you to make a payment before they’re unlocked. (FixMeTip: we recommend never paying after a ransomware attack). While FixMeStick can remove these viruses, it will not unlock or decode your files.
- Hard Drive Failure – hard drives serve as the home for most of the files on your computer. They have a limited lifespan and can fail suddenly. The sudden loss of a hard drive can result in the total loss of all your files if you do not have them backed up in another place.
How To Back Up Your Computer
Backing up your computer simply means you always save a copy of your files in a different location than your computer. That way this backup copy of your files is accessible in case your original copy is lost. There are different ways to do this.
Some factors to consider when choosing the best way to back up your data are durability, speed, and portability.. For example, if you purchased an external hard drive to store your data, it might be very durable but not as portable. You might damage it during transportation, or even misplace it after moving to a new home.
At FixMeStick, we recommend backing up your files online in a secure online cloud storage system. You might be asking, what do you mean by cloud? In simple terms, the cloud refers to storing and accessing data and program over the Internet instead of them saved on your computer’s hard drive.
If I have Windows, is System Restore the same thing?
As we mentioned a backup is a copy of your files that is stored in a separate location, external to your computer’s hard drive. It is used to back up your actual files and photos.
A system restore happens automatically on your computer’s operating system – it is internal. If something happens to your physical computer a system restore won’t be able to help you. Further, a system restore tends to be used for your Windows registry, so you can put it back to an earlier date.
What about if I have a Mac?
If you have a Mac they have a feature called Time Machine, that automatically backs up all of your files, including apps, music, photos, email, documents, and system files. Learn more about that here.
You never know what’s going to happen to your computer. You can be extra careful but accidents happen. It’s better to be safe than sorry.