There are as many benefits to backing up your files as there are ways to back up your files. Regardless of how you do it, it’s always a good idea to have a backup somewhere.
Types of Backups
First let’s start off with two main types of backups: On-site and off-site.
On-site backup is where you backup your files onto the computer that the files are stored on.
Off-site backup means that the files are either kept on a server miles away from you or on an external drive that you keep in your closet at home.
They both have their advantages.
On-site: easy to frequently update your backup.
Off-site: If your computer is stolen or destroyed, all of your backups are still available.
Once you decide whether on-site or off-site suites you better you now get to decide whether you just want to backup just your files or whether you want your entire system backed up.
If you back up only your files you can then put those on any computer and view them or manipulate them. In this method you do not save your programs, like Quickbooks or Outlook, so you will have to reinstall the programs and then change all of the settings back to how you had them before. To backup this way could be as simple as plugging in an external hard drive and dragging the files you want backed up onto it. There are also programs, such as Carbonite, that will backup your files for you on a schedule and store them on a server off-site. This method is usually much smaller, in storage space, than its counterpart.
The other way of backing up your files would be to create something called a “system image” where it would save your entire system. A system image saves everything on your computer, including your operating system, all of your programs, and data. A system image is usually saved to a series of disks or .iso files. Using this method once you restored your backup it would make everything look exactly the same as you had it when you created the system image. All of your programs would still be there, all of your data, and all of your settings within the programs. With this method you can’t add data to it or go back and take a single file out, the whole system is stored as an image, and as a result leads to less frequent backups.
Whichever way you choose to backup your files you can always bring your computer into South City Computer and we can do all the work for you.