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Back To School: Backup

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Continuing the wildly popular “Back To School” series, here is the latest installment. In the previous post you read about formatting your computer and then keeping it clean and running quickly. In this article, we will discuss a little bit about what you can do if you do end up losing your information. Cross your fingers that this never happens, but sadly, it does. In this post I will help you with the act of the Backup.

Now there are multiple different methods of backing up. The easiest would be to use an external device and save your work. If you have a flash drive you can back up all of your important document. If you have a larger external hard drive you can back up everything or even make an image of your computer.

Mac users have a nice advantage when it comes to backing up. Apple’s computers come preloaded with Time Machine, a program that automatically and incrementally backs up your computer. This can also be done wirelessly, which is another nice feature.

If you don’t want to have any extra hardware scattered across your dorm room, you can consider a couple of the cloud backup options. One of the first would be to send yourself a document as an email attachment. That way it’s stored in your email and can be accessed from any computer. For more than one document, I would recommend using Google Docs. It is very easy to upload, edit and share any documents and then export them again.

I like things that are free and I know other college students do to. So take advantage of the 2GB of space that DropBox provides free of charge. You can upload absolutely anything to DropBox and access it from any other computer that has internet access. There are also many services like DropBox that will charge a small fee to backup your computer on a regular basis.

Using one or more of these methods will ensure that you are never left begging your teacher for an extension because your hard drive crashed. Do it for yourself, back up your information and never lose your work again.

Do you use a different method of backing up your information? Let me know in the comments or @DevonSchreiner or @InflectoVita.

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