Backup Resolutions
Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted. ~Albert Einstein

2010!! Can you believe it? The first decade of the new century has come and gone. I'm beginning to feel old. But enough about me, what about you? Do you make new year resolutions? Are you trying to lose weight or is that wait? Maybe there is a reason wait and weight sound alike. I'm waiting for the weight to go away? But I digress.

Maybe you are trying to save money, learn a new skill, complete a project, start a dream. I stumbled on the following quote at She attributes the quote to writer Gary Thomas.

"Many people choose safe lives in which failure (and, therefore, real success) is highly unlikely. They never take risks and they never fail; but they also die without any real service. They may never make a mistake, but they will also never make a difference."

This quote resonated for me. I've always tried to teach my girls that failure isn't the end, but not trying, might be.

On a similar note: just before Christmas a customer/friend came to visit. He works for a call center and he told me that if he had learned anything from working at the call center it was this: There are only two kinds of computers; the computers that have failed and the computers that are going to fail. Now, remember, my livelihood depends on computer failure, so I don't necessarily see computer failure as a bad thing - but dealing with customer emotions when they learn they have lost all of their family photos, years of accounting/tax data, email, contact lists, partially completed novels and the like, can create a tremendous amount of stress for the bearer of the bad news. Did I mention that my new year resolution is to reduce stress? Allow me, if you will, to again suggest that everyone have a good backup solution in place.

There are multiple backup options to choose from. If you have small amounts of data you can easily burn it to a CD or copy to a flash drive. If you need assistance in doing so, contact Neal and schedule a 1 hour, one-on-one tutorial.

If you have larger amounts of data, or data that updates frequently, you can install an external backup drive. My favorite drive is the Rebit drive. It's a 5 minute install process and automatically keeps your backup current without any intervention from you. As an added benefit, it maintains versions of the data so you can revert back to what it was like last week (or earlier), if necessary. Prices start at $169.

If you are concerned about natural disasters then offsite backups are a solution for you. Offsite backups work best when you have a high speed internet connection and prices start at $2 per compressed gigabyte. The data is secured so there is no worry about unauthorized access and there is a 2 week free trial. Data is stored in Minnesota. If done with all bells and whistles this backup can do a bare metal restore, which is geek for: take all of the data, including the operating system and programs, and install it on a new computer. This could prove handy in case of fire or theft of the original system.

My first real job after finishing college was that of insurance agent. The company I worked for taught me that people don't plan to fail, instead, they fail to plan. So lets take all of the above antidotes and make a plan for a successful 2010. Lets make a difference by implementing a backup procedure that works. That way, when your computer fails, (remember its not if-its when) your data will be protected and my stress level will be reduced. And our resolutions will have been achieved!

To Successful Computing,