BACKUP YOUR COMPUTER EFFECTIVELY WITH THESE SIMPLE STEPS

Prior to the previous article I made where we outlined meaning of computer backup and several key reasons with it’s important to have your computer backup, well if you missed it I highly recommend you go through it to have a tight grip of the meaning and essence of computer backup before proceeding with this post, meanwhile have a glimpse of what we talked about.

In today’s fast-paced world, backing up your files is of the utmost importance. Typically music, movies, films, data files, projects, photos, operating system, programs, and other settings can are all be stored in one place – The computer and can also be backed up. Laptops and desktops have decreased in cost, and the amount of storage inside them has increased greatly over the last few years. Unfortunately having all of your data in only one place is just so dangerous.

Computer loss, theft, natural disaster, and accidental deletion, are just some of the ways that you can lose the data you’ve spent so long creating and accumulating. The only way to prepare for the unexpected is to have a good backup strategy in place. There are many different ways to backup your computers which we are going to be listing here, and using multiple forms of backup will minimize the risk of ever losing your valuable files.

Well, before shading light on how to backup a computer, you should probably know this two forms of computer backup.

Onsite Backup

Onsite Backup literally means backups stored at the same physical location as you. So, if you back up to an external hard drive and store that at home with your home PC, that’s an onsite backup.

Offsite Backup

Offsite backups are stored at a different location. for instance, if you back up to an online server, like that’s an offsite backup.

Types of Computer Backup

  1.   External Drive Backup:

computer backupIf you have an external USB hard drive, you can just back up to that drive using your computer’s built-in backup features. External drive backups are mainly intended to provide a backup of your personal files, especially irreplaceable things like pictures. Instead of looking at your entire hard drive, this type of backup only looks at certain folders, such as your home directory. The archive part of this type of backup means that if files are on your primary hard drive are changed (or even deleted) you can go back to undo the changes and even recover those deleted files. If your computer dies you can simply plug the external backup drive into a different computer and immediately have access to all of your files, as well as the history of changes and deleted files.

  1.   Cloud Backup

Hcloud computer backupaving a backup (or two) next to your computer is a good start, but it still puts your data at risk for theft, fire, or other disaster. Your best protection against that type of loss is to keep another backup somewhere else. While you could make a clone and bring it to a friend’s house or your office, or even put it into a safe-deposit box, chances are that you would not remember to keep it updated because it would be inconvenient.

In fact, cloud backups are the easiest kind to create and maintain. To get started you simply need to create an account, download software, run it once to enter your account information, and (optionally) set any preferences that you might want. After the initial setup you don’t need to do anything, the software will automatically keep your computer backed up any time it is turned on and connected to the Internet.

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Behind the scenes a lot is going on with your cloud backup. First your files are encrypted so no one else can read them. Then they are copied not just to one drive but to lots and lots of drives. One of the main benefits of cloud backup is that the “cloud” is made up of many distributed and redundant computers and drives, so the loss of any one will not cause you to lose any files. Once they are uploaded, you never have to worry about uploading them again unless they are changed. Even then, changes can be sent much faster because the software is smart enough to know what is different and only send the changed data.

The main downside people have with setting up an offsite backup is the initial upload, which can take a few weeks or even a month. This depends on how much data you are trying to upload and the speed of your connection. Most ISPs are more focused on download speeds than upload speeds. If your current plan has slow uploads, you might be able to call them and temporarily upgrade to a plan with more “upload bandwidth” during your initial backup. Another potential negative is if you lose your entire drive and need to get all of your files back. In that case you would be limited by the speed at which you can download from your cloud backup provider.

  1.   Bootable Backup or “Clone”

two hard drivesA “bootable backup” (sometimes called a “clone”) is like a spare tire for your car. If you get a flat tire, a spare will let you finish your trip or at least get you to the point where you can get more help. A clone is a complete copy of your computer’s primary hard drive (sometimes called a “boot drive”). If your computer’s primary drive died tomorrow you could hook up the clone, reboot your computer from it, and have immediate access to not only all of your files but also all of the software you use, including all of the settings and configuration changes that you have made. If you are in the middle of an important project or just don’t have time to replace the boot drive immediately, a clone can really save the day. A clone also has a copy of all your files as they were when the clone was last updated, which means that if you accidentally deleted a file, you can copy it back from the clone to your boot drive.

A spare tire isn’t meant to be used for very long, and it usually isn’t as good as the original. The same is true of a clone backup drive. With a car there are lots of other things that can go wrong besides the tire failing. With a computer there are lots of other things that can go wrong besides the hard drive failing. Your computer will run slower when booted from an external drive, and there may be some other shortfalls.

Still you’d definitely like to have a clone when your primary hard drive fails. Of course your clone will only be useful if it has been updated recently, because otherwise it will be missing files. However, because it has to examine every file on your computer, it can take awhile to create, and it is best not to use your computer while the clone is updating. Due to all of those factors, a clone is usually updated once a day at most and more often only once a week.

How To Backup Computer Using External Hard Drive

  1. Get a backup drive. This can be just about any USB external hard drive, and you can get them at most electronics stores. Try to get one that has twice as much space as your computer, so you have room for multiple backups and so you have room for all the data you might get in the future.
  2. When you first plug it in, Windows will actually ask you if you want to use it as a backup. Tell it that you do. If you don’t get this prompt, you can just go to the Start Menu, type “backup” in the search box, and hit Backup and Restore.
  3. From there, click the “Set Up Backup” button. Pick the external drive you plugged in and hit Next. Windows’ default settings are probably fine, so you can just hit Next and the next screen too.
  4. On the last screen, hit “Save Settings and Run Backup”. Windows will make its first backup of your drive, during which you don’t want to turn off your computer. After that, it’ll make regular backups in the background as you work—you don’t need to deal with it again.
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If you ever need to restore a file you lost, you can just go to the Start Menu, type in “backup”, and go back to “Backup and Restore”. You can hit the “Restore My Files” or “Restore Users Files” buttons to get those files back.

Alternatively,

  1. You can select the Start button, then select Control Panel System and Maintenance > Backup and Restore.
  2. Do one of the following:
    • If you’ve never used Windows Backup before, or recently upgraded your version of Windows, select Set up backup, and then follow the steps in the wizard.
    • If you’ve created a backup before, you can wait for your regularly scheduled backup to occur, or you can manually create a new backup by selecting Back up now.
    • If you’ve created a backup before, but want to make a new, full backup rather than updating the old one, select Create newfull backup, and then follow the steps in the wizard.

Note: Do not back up files to the same hard disk that Windows is installed on. For example, do not back up files to a recovery partition. Always store media used for backups (external hard disks, DVDs, or CDs) in a secure place to prevent unauthorized people from having access to your files; a fireproof location separate from your computer is recommended. You might also consider encrypting the data on your backup.

To Restore,

  1. Right-click the Start button, then select Control Panel > System and Maintenance > Backup and Restore.
  2. Do one of the following:
    • To restore your files, choose Restore my files.
    • To restore the files of all users, choose Restore all users’ files.
  3. Do one of the following:
    • To look through the contents of the backup, select Browse for files or Browse for folders. When you’re browsing for folders, you won’t be able to see the individual files in a folder. To view individual files, use the Browse for files
    • To search the contents of the backup, select Search, type all or part of a file name, and then select Search.

Tips: If you’re searching for files or folders associated with a specific user account, you can improve search results by typing the location of the file or folder in the Search for box. For example, to search for all JPG files that were backed up, type JPG in the Search for box. To only search for JPG files associated with the user Bill, type C:\Users\Bill\JPG in the Search for box.

You can use wildcard characters such as *.jpg to search for all JPG files that were backed up.

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To Make a System Image

System images contain all of the info on your PC at a particular state

  1. Right-click the Start button, then select Control Panel > System and Maintenance > Backup and Restore.
  2. In the left panel, choose Create a system image, and then follow the steps in the wizard.
  • If you’re prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.

Note: To create a system image of a drive, it must be formatted to use the NTFS file system. If you save the system image on a hard drive or USB flash drive, it must be formatted to use the NTFS file system.

Computer Backup For Mac Users

  1. Get a backup drive. This can be just about any USB external hard drive, and you can get them at most electronics stores. Try to get one that has twice as much space as your computer, so you have room for multiple backups and so you have room for all the data you might get in the future.
  2. When you plug in your drive, your Mac will ask you if you want to use that drive as a backup disk. Hit “Use as Backup Disk”. If you don’t get this prompt, you can always go to System Preferences > Time Machine to set it as a backup disk, too.
  3. From Time Machine’s preferences, hit “Select Backup Disk” and choose your external drive.
  4. That’s it! OS X will perform its first backup (during which you’ll want to keep your computer on), and from then on it’ll back up in the background with no work required on your part.

If you ever need to restore a file, just click on the Time Machine icon in your menu bar and hit “Enter Time Machine”. From there, you can search through your old backups for the files you lost and restore them to your hard drive.

How To Backup Your Computer To Cloud

Backblaze (currently $50 annually per computer) is reportedly the best online backup service for most people, as if offers a great combination of useful features unlimited storage, and excellent performance at an attractive price – the proverbial cost of a latte per month. backblaze offers fast, reliable backups, as well as the simplest setup process I’ve seen and a number of nice touches.

IDrive though is more expensive than Backblaze and offers only 2 TB of storage, but it lets you back up from or to network volumes, offers indefinite retention of deleted files and old versions of files, lets you seed an initial backup at no charge, and provides the fastest throughput of any service in our test group. If Backblaze isn’t suitable for your needs and you’re willing to spend a bit more, IDrive may be an excellent choice.

Alternative cloud backup platform you might want to consider

MEGA Cloud Storage which offers 50Gb free storage, See bigger storage volume their prices

GoogleDrive offers 5Gb free storage

 

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As an online entrepreneur and webmaster in Nigeria, I love technology! As a result, and to earnestly contribute to tech awareness within individuals, I find the need to give digital-based insight of the technology world today, hence, making individuals well tech rounded and get the need to acquire technical skills.

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