If you’ve ever been a victim of data loss, you know how not-fun it is. If this has never happened to you, trust me, you don’t want this to happen. Better safe than sorry then, for those who do not know how to do it or for those who have not learned the lesson, here are our tips to avoid a lot of hassles. Let’s see about everything you need to know about backing up your data.
Do I really need to back up my data?
Just as it is strongly recommended to keep certain documents such as payslips or energy bills, it is also advisable to back up your data. Although computers are great machines, they are not immune to a failure that can lead to the irreversible loss of the data contained therein. The threat of a virus also lurks if one is poorly or not protected. The loss of some files may not be serious, but when it comes to photos and other content that cannot be reproduced, the sentence is irrevocable.
In the same way that we periodically save a document on word processing software, we must regularly save its data and why not take the opportunity to sort it out. Ideally, you should have at least one copy of your most important files. Ideally, you’ll never have to use it, but if things ever go wrong, you’ll be glad you thought of everything.
To back up your files, there are different options that can even be supplemented. Some time ago, you would have had only a rather limited choice: the floppy disk or the CD. Now no longer available, these supports have been replaced by more practical and efficient peripherals.
The most practical is undoubtedly the USB stick. It allows you to have everyday files with you without cluttering up. You can hang one on your key ring or wear it around your wrist in the case of a bracelet containing a USB stick. Storage capacities range from 2 GB to over 128 GB, depending on requirements. The only catch is that their relatively compact size makes them easy to lose. Same refrain for memory cards which are rather used for the storage of multimedia contents.
A device like Photostick can also be used to backup photos, videos and documents. Take a look at these Photo stick reviews by experts to know more about this one-click backup device.
Next are hard drives. Their strong point is the possibility of being able to store a multitude of data there. Starting at around 500 GB, the capacity of a hard drive can go up to 6 TB (or 12 times a 500 GB disk) enough to adapt to everyone’s needs while ensuring great durability over time. Mechanical hard disks (or HDD) work thanks to a disk rotating around a plate which will come and write data. Because there are moving parts, this type of storage is sensitive to shocks. For a hard drive, consider protective covers or cases. Some models, like the LaCie Rugged 1 are directly provided with protections. In terms of data protection, some models, like Western Digital’s My Passport, have encryption software so that your files can only be viewed after entering the password. Even more efficient, Samsung T7 Touch hard drives feature a fingerprint reader to ensure owner authenticity.
Previously high, their price has melted like snow in the sun. For a few hundreds of rupees, you can find a good mechanical hard drive of great capacity. It would be a shame to miss this opportunity.
To allow increased transmission rates and foolproof strength, SSD drives have emerged. Long confined to internal storage, they are now found in the range of external hard drives. Lighter and faster, their reliability is foolproof. They also offer the advantage of being compact and it is not uncommon to find certain references like the Samsung T5 that fit in the palm of your hand. At equal capacity, SSDs are more expensive than HDDs, but they can be found at reasonable prices.
Store in the cloud
The cloud allows remote access to files. In reality, data is not stored above our heads, as the word “cloud” which means “cloud” suggests, but in data centers. These are huge rooms filled with servers (computers in short) that operate without interruption. By using a service like Google Drive for example, you are actually storing your files on computers owned by Google. To access it anywhere and anytime, all you need to do is access your online space by logging in and you will find all the files you have synchronized.
With most providers of cloud solutions for individuals, beyond a certain storage limit, you have to pay. It may then seem tempting to turn to a completely free cloud service. Be careful, because the security and confidentiality of your data is not guaranteed.
We recommend that you favor cloud storage for the most important files (so that unnecessary files do not waste space) and for those that you are likely to use frequently (such as a third-party payment card or a list summarizing the birthdays of your loved ones in case your memory is full). This way, if for some reason you need a document at all costs, you won’t have to wait until you can access your computer.
NAS server: store data on the network
The NAS server is primarily intended for data storage, just like a conventional hard drive. Moreover, the NAS server itself is only a receptacle that has bays in which to house hard disks (preferably designed especially for NAS). It is possible to duplicate the same content on several hard disks to avoid any technical problem that would lead to loss of files but also to improve the speed of access to files. Conversely, we can differentiate all the disks present on the NAS in order to be able to fill them as desired with the data that we want. This is called RAID. These are devices that allow you to choose how to arrange the hard drives on your NAS. Either way, your files are kept nice and warm and can be accessed from all devices on your home network. In short, you can share common files with members of your family. And if you need privacy, it is always possible to limit access to certain content with a password.
You can also configure a NAS server to access it outside of your home. So we come back to the overall operation of the cloud, except that instead of your data being stored on a server located no one knows where, everything is at home, safe. You can then build your hermetic file-sharing system while remaining safe from the risks that can threaten consumer online storage solutions.
One of the other advantages of the NAS is that, like a gaming PC, it is possible to change its configuration. Indeed, NAS servers embed processors allowing them to perform many more tasks than simple data storage such as remote viewing of videos up to 4K. NAS also rely on RAM, frequently between 2 GB and 4 GB. With some models, we can increase the memory capacity for performance always at the rendezvous. And of course, when one of the hard drives gets full, there is nothing easier than replacing it with a larger one.
If the idea appeals to you but the prospect of acquiring a NAS does not excite you, there is hope. If you have subscribed to Free for example, you benefit from a NAS in the person of your Freebox (Revolution, Mini 4K or Delta). This is practical, especially because your box is permanently on, no need to connect a new device that would consume electricity.
Save your data to save space
You have no doubt seen it, more and more computers embed a reduced memory. It is common to find storage capacities of 32 GB or 64 GB for inexpensive PCs or from 128 GB for some high-end computers. Mechanically, in these ranges, the higher the storage, the higher the price. So, when several variations are offered, as is the case with the MacBook Pro, it is common to go for the most affordable model and which therefore has less storage space. However, it is necessary to take into account the fact that the available capacity is necessarily lower than the advertised capacity. This is because the operating system (Windows or MacOS) is installed in the internal memory, as are some pre-installed applications. Once you add software that you download as well as your documents, movies, photos, and music to it, you may find yourself running out of space. Keep in mind that it is not wise to fill a hard drive in its entirety at the risk of encountering slowdowns.