A Backup Horror Story Computers Revolt

Dennis Faas's picture

Yesterday's feature article on Eazy Backup stirred up some emotions from a few Infopackets Readers. In fact, Tina P. from Franklin, Indiana told me about her recent horror story:

" Dear Dennis,

I am grinning now, although I wasn't on Monday! I just finished reading yesterday's feature article on Eazy Backup, and must admit: doing regular backups is very important. I don't know if it was a combination of the full moon last Friday and Monday's date being the 13th -- but it seems that all of my electronic equipment have formed a revolt.

On Thursday, my desktop's motherboard finally gave out. This wasn't unexpected, and I backed up most of my desktop computer fairly recently. What I *didn't* backup was loaded on my Laptop and Palm PC. Oddly enough, my Laptop locked me out on Saturday due to a security setting gone wrong (probably due to my own fault). On the following Monday, I noticed the battery was low on my Palm PC. After I changed the battery, it would no longer start up without first prompting me to erase all the data! If I opted not to erase my data, the Palm PC would shut off immediately.

Since I use my desktop PC to synchronize and backup my Palm PC data -- and since my desktop PC recently died -- everything was lost! So, in response to Jake's article, I say, 'You can never backup enough!' Thanks for a great newsletter! I love it! "

Thanks Tina, and I wish you luck in the future! Perhaps it might be a good idea to store your backups to CD writable media -- or even a second hard drive -- as Jake Ludington suggests in the answer to the following question from Terry A.:

" I read and understand the article provided [yesterday, 10/15] by Mr. Ludington, however, I am confused as to where the data is stored once it the backup is created? Is the backed up data sent to a floppy disk, burned onto CD / DVD, or is the data sent via the internet to some cyber filing cabinet? PS: I really enjoy infopackets newsletter! I am truly informed by your articles and recommended downloads. "

I forwarded Terry's email to Jake, and he replied:

" Terry: The first time Eazy Backup is executed, it prompts you to choose a location for your backup file. Backing up your data to a second hard drive is a great solution, because a hard drive [access time is typically faster than a CD burner or DVD writer drive, and usually] offers more space for backing up large files like movies and music.

If a second hard drive isn't an option for you, Eazy Backup supports direct backups to CD or DVD using CD burning software like Roxio Direct CD (or your favorite backup application). Floppy disks are generally too small to back up a meaningful amount of data [and have a very high failure rate: the shelf life of a floppy disk is typically 1 ~ 5 years at most, whereas CD / DVD media is much more reliable and rated to last ~100 years]. "

If you missed yesterday's review of Eazy Backup, you can read it here:

Easy Backup Review

On a side note, I recently wrote a review on a program called WinBackup by Li Utilities -- the same people who made WinTasks Professional and SpeedUpMyPC. The WinBackup review explains some key terms used in conjunction with backup programs, such as Spanning and Compressed Files. The article is a good read, and WinBackup is surely one of my most favorite backup programs. More details here:

WinBackup Review

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