Thought experiment: What would happen if I ran into your room right now, seized your computer, and tossed it into the ocean? You'd likely pop me in the nose, and you'd be angered at losing the cost of the hardware. But what about your data? Specifically, how long ago did you do your last backup? Does your backup catch everything: your desktop, your "My Documents", C:/Data, your email archives, and so forth? A good friend of mine recently experienced a total failure of the disk in her laptop. No recent backup, of course. Ouch ouch ouch. Current projects: gone. Three months of family pictures: gone. Archives: gone. Painful does not begin to capture the situation. RKG's friendly IT crew tried to fix it (swapping disk into new machine, trying to read raw sectors, trying to mount it under Linux, even freezing it) but had no luck. An expen$ive data recovery firm is now taking a crack at it. This got me thinking. While we have decent corporate backup systems at work, my own home backups are lame, incomplete and infrequent. This week I'm resolving to set up a good backup process, with some automatic script copying all key directories onto a big cheap external drive each night. Everyone knows it is important but far too few actually do it. When was the last time you backed up your essential computer?
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