Backing up. When will I learn?

It happened again. My computer crashed (at less than 1-year-old), but I never felt the need to backup my data.

If you’ve been reading Crayon Writer for a while, you know that my last laptop’s hard drive crashed earlier this year.

So what am I going to do to avoid this in the future?

Hopefully my ideas will help any other lazy backer-uppers too.

I will cc myself on any important emails I send. Perhaps I’ll cc them to my “free” email account. This way I won’t lose important emails.

I will also email myself important documents I’m working on (or have finished), like my resume or a client’s project.

I will turn off my laptop or computer more often, or at least put it in “standby” mode. I think my hard drives burned out from overheating.

Finally, though I’m a bit lazy, I will backup my files at least every two months. I found a computer store in town that charges just $40 for this service.

And while we’re working on prevention, buy renter’s or homeowner’s insurance. If you get burglarized or your neighbors aren’t handy with an oven, you may not lose everything you own (monetarily speaking). I just signed up a month ago.

I sure wish insurance could magically recover my documents. Here’s hoping the computer fixers can get something from my fried hard-drive.

 Any other advice for avoiding computer catastrophes?

11 Responses to “Backing up. When will I learn?”

  1. Marie D. says:

    Oh yes, I have one thing to add: switch to a Mac!!
    Never had a crash or data lost in five years, since I switched.
    But just in case, I back-up like once a month (iTunes music, pictures and documents of course) on an external hard disk (that is a good investment) or on a CD or DVD. I also back-up before important system upgrades.
    Just put a reminder on your calendar for, say, first Saturday of each month and DON’T delay. Next time it happens (althoug I hope it doesn’t), you’ll be thankfull!
    PS: paying a store to do your backups?? why do you need that?? this is something you can easily do on your own!

    • Theda K. says:

      Hi Marie! I don’t know if I can switch to a Mac. I was raised anti-Mac (LOL!) But I agree with you that I should do my own backups instead of paying someone else. This is really a pain. I think my computers crashed because I left them on too long. I go days or more without giving them a break. Then they give ME a break!


      • Marie D. says:

        Come on, give a Mac a try and you’ll never want anything else!! LOL – first of all because macs don’t crash just because you left them on too long, I mean, please, how did they make us accept it is normal for a computer to crash if we use it too intensively or leave them on??? (but most PC’s work this way, I know, I have one at work). Now at Apple stores they even have “geniuses” who help you transferring all your data to your new mac, you leave the shop and you’re ready to work!

  2. Theda,

    I’m paranoid about backing up. You can read about my system (which might be overkill for you but works for me)at

    Copying files onto a jump drive is an easy way to backup.

  3. Julia says:

    Marie is right! Switching to a Mac might solve some of your problems. If you don’t feel uncomfortable with all your files stowed somewhere “out there”, you can also buy a “.Mac” account that gives you server space to backup to regularly and provides a supposedly (haven’t tried it) easy-to-use backup program. Plus, there are also some useful and inexpensive backup and retrieval applications for Macs around (I think “Super Duper” is one of them).
    It’s really easy to backup at home!

    • Theda K. says:

      Hi Julia,

      I really never knew that very many people used Macs, besides designers/publishers. I doubt I’ll ever get one, but I appreciate the input. Maybe someone reading this who is considering a new computer may wind up buying one. 🙂


  4. Hi Theda,

    Been reading your post but noted you crash drive problem and your resolve to back up more often.

    I use a really simple online system that constantly backs up my computer. Everytime I add something to a document file or anywhere on my c-drive it gets backed up. It is cheap about 5 bucks a month. A friend of mine accidently deleted a whole wack of files in my zip folder, and I was able to recover them all very easily.

    The Program is called Carbonite. I don’t worry about that any more.

    Glad you survive the Google purge, I survive too with Rank intact.


  5. Ivy says:

    Ouch. I’m guilty of leaving my PC on for 12 hours nonstop. thanks for the tips 🙂

  6. Ivy says:

    you have some very interesting posts. i’m surely coming back 🙂

  7. Online backup is another excellent method for backing up your files. This allows you to store your files online, where there is no need for disks or CDs, and you can simply download your files back onto your computer whenever you want.

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