Imagine losing all the data you have collected and saved on your computer. Data loss may be very devastating, and it may even lead to the collapse of an institution. Data backup is paramount in restoring data that has been lost due to the theft, deletion or other data loss events. It also helps to store historical data for future reference. For these reasons and more, it is prudent to back up your data regularly to avoid data losses. Here are some tips from our friends over at The PC Dojo:
Strategies of backing up your data
At these globalization times when computers and the internet no longer make us feel like old Jurassic fossils, there are several strategies of backing up data that has can be used, and more strategies continue to be invented. Here are a few of these strategies.
• Use of CDs and DVDs. This is one of the oldest ways of backing up data. It is suitable to the individuals and organizations that do not keep large volumes of data.
• Backing up data to an External hard drive. Various forms of backup software allow you to back up your data on an external hard drive. This strategy is safer than the use of CDs and DVDs. Backing up data on an external hard drive is simply a drag and drop process, whereas you have to burn data to save it on a CD or DVD.
• Backing up to a network-attached server (NAS). This is perhaps the most reliable strategy of data support and back up. It allows you to access the stored data anytime anywhere. It is less prone to loss and failure than the use of CDs, DVDs and thumb drives.
Tips to consider when planning for data backups.
• Choose the most appropriate backup software for your needs. The list of backup software grows by the day. The software can be free or paid. You need to choose the best software for your needs and ensure that you get the latest version. AMANDA, Areca Backup, DAR, and rdiff-backup are a few examples of free data backup software systems. Some of the proprietary backup software include Windows Backup and Restore, System Center Data Protection Manager and IBM Tivoli Storage Manager.
• Space. You need to choose a data backup media/method that will store all your data.
• Scheduling. Data backup should be done at regular intervals. This ensures that the process is reliable and consistent. Most backup software have the job scheduler functionality that facilitates scheduling of backups.
• Authenticity. It is important to note that unauthorized access and backup of data may have far-reaching catastrophic repercussions. It is, therefore, critical to make sure that the data backup process is only done by authenticated user accounts and systems. In fact, the ability to copy all the data onto the backup system should be restricted to a few individuals.
• Measuring the process. As a matter of sound data management principles, the data backup process should be evaluated and validated after some time. The success of the process should be measured from time to time to determine whether to continue using the system or not. The process should also be monitored keenly.
All said and done, having a good backup system and failing to keep it safe is self-defeating logic. You have to ensure that your data backup devices and software are safe from corruption and loss.