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Er... I might not be uploading for a while because I've had a problem with my PC's D: drive, the one I store all my data on.
It's going to the shop for rescue work.
MESSSAGE FOR EVERYONE: Make FREQUENT backups!!!
Whether your PC holds commercial or hobby related data such as images, documents, browser favourites, e-mails or whatever, a problem with a hard drive can be devastating, possibly resulting in a total loss of all the data held on the drive due to your operating system not being able to access the drive at all.
The most comprehensive backup method is to make a complete image (using Acronis True Image for example, make sure the software you chose can handle imaging a drive that currently in active use... some won't do this) which is saved on another hard drive or, preferably and more reliably, onto CD-R, CD-RW, DVD-R or DVD-RWs. The software will allow you to spread the saved image spread across several discs if you're saving a lot of data.
It's also a good idea to make 2 identical backups, the second being independently created and not a copy of the first, that way you won't be copying any possible errors in the first version. For even better reliability the second backup should be stored separately from the first, (maybe one at work at the other at home, for instance) then in the unlikely but devastating event that the first backup is destroyed or lost (e.g. due to fire or theft etc.) you'll still be able to recover your missing data.
We all hope it won't happen to us...but unfortunately it can, so be safe...not sorry!
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Ah, I see you learned the hard way. Good advice but I wonder how many carry it out. I back up important data and the pics I put on DVD.
Quote: Ah, I see you learned the hard way.
Yes indeed I did!
I made my last full backup at the end of July though, so if the guys at the shop can't sort the problem out then at least I won't have lost everything.
Remember folks, it probably took a fair while to amass all your programs and to get them and Windows, or whatever operating system you use, set up to suit your preferences.
A fault with the system drive could involve having to reinstall everything, (if you're lucky and the drive works at all) so don't just think about backing up your files. Make a drive image of each of your hard disks and you'll be saving a lot of time and trouble should the worst happen!
Quote: more reliably, onto CD-R, CD-RW, DVD-R or DVD-RWs
I've seen some of the cheaper DVD's become unreadable after only six months. So that isn't strictly true. If you're really paranoid the answer would be to make two backups. Nothing worse than having a HDD fail only to find the backup media is unreadable too.
Another note of caution as these USB 'pen drives' become more popular is not to rely on them for backups. I recently had a customer who had one with her 10,000 word thesis on, completely unreadable, she had lost it all and hadn't even kept a copy on the old and beaten laptop she'd been using.
Bad luck on the system failure and thanks for the reminder. Its something that hits most of us at least once and the paranoia lasts for quite a while but then we slip back into complacency
I use an external hard drive + spare internal + DVD-RW + CD-ROM as back-up tools for different files
My problem now is keeping track of where everything is (book-keeping was always my weak point
Brian, you've demonstrated just how paranoid some people can be
Yes, I agree that the cheaper discs are a false economy. Get a good brand (possibly the one that your drive manufacturer recommends) and stick with it if you want a good chance of getting your data back later!
I did suggest 2 backups in my original message.
Paranoia or not... backups are a Very Good Idea.
I only back up my pictures would never keep anything important on my pc at all
Quote: Brian, you've demonstrated just how paranoid some people can be
Simon, in my last system crash I lost a load of images of my wife's china painting output - you'd be paranoid after that! )
Well, having spent 15 years in the IT industry, I am more that aware of the importance of backing up your valuable data, and I woould reccomend "Nortons Ghost" software, but saying that,even though I do have the software,I wish I had used it, when only 2 months ago my hard drive crashed with every picture I had ever taken on it, with over a quarter of a million files to trudge through, it is going to take me a while to get back what I have lost, so Good advice is not always taken as it should be
Quote: I recently had a customer who had one with her 10,000 word thesis on, completely unreadable
Now that is painfull, bet she backs up now though.
I recall the days when all you had to back up were floppy disc with only 720mb capacity. I see that floppy drives are still fitted in new machines though.
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