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Back Up your Data!

My 3TB Hard Drive that stopped working

Almost four years ago I built my own desktop computer.  I’d researched all the parts I’d need for a PC for the type of work I use it for, while sticking to a budget.  The build included two hard disc drives, the largest a 3TB Seagate Barracuda to store my growing collection of photos and video.  This week, that 3TB drive died, taking with it almost 2TB (2000GB) of data, including all my photos.  I’m so thankful now that I’ve always made sure I back up everything.

Back in the day, keeping a back-up meant burning the data onto a CD or DVD.  These days I have multiple copies of anything important, including at least one offsite or in the cloud.  I use Crash Plan for unlimited automatic off site back up my files, as well as copying selected important files to my Microsoft One Drive cloud account.

The only trouble with online cloud backup for me is my ADSL upload speed.  If I do a big photo-shoot, it can take weeks for everything to be uploaded and safely backed up online, so I also keep a local copy of any recent work.  Hopefully once we get the NBN connected (should be this week!) there will be a dramatic increase in upload speed, making cloud back-up complete quicker.

So my dead hard drive is merely an inconvenience, rather than a disaster.  My main concern now is shopping around for a new drive, or maybe investing in a multi drive raid NAS box, and restoring those backed up files.

If you are like so many people I know who only have their precious photos saved on their laptop, then you really should start thinking about a back-up strategy.  The experts will tell you that it’s only a matter of time, “when” – not “if”, you experience a HDD failure.

Back-Up your important data, back it up now!


Cloud game changer

I was very pleased to read on TechAU this morning that Microsoft’s One Drive (formerly Sky Drive) will be giving unlimited cloud storage to Office 365 customers – That’s Me!

This could be a game changer for data storage and off site back up.  It’s only a couple of years since I built a PC with multiple large hard-drives to store all my data, including thousands of photos.  To guard against loosing all this data to a disaster at home, I’m paying for a CrashPlan account to backup my computer off site.  For the practicality of online access to important files I juggle free cloud services such as Drop-Box, Google Drive and the existing One Drive.

As I’m already paying for an Office 365 subscription (to give the whole family the Microsoft Office suite), when One Drive goes unlimited all of those other services suddenly become obsolete.  I imagine this change from Microsoft will shake up the industry too, so it will be interesting to see what happens with the other cloud storage players out there.

The only thing that’s missing is high speed broadband upload speeds.  I already use One Drive to back-up my iPhone photos (Apple’s iCloud simply isn’t big enough), but those uploads can take a while – especially if there’s video files involved.  If we had the NBN, I’d be laughing!

One Drive Blog

One Drive Blog