How to Backup Your Important Data.

In this post I going to take a look at how to best backup your data so that should the worse happen and you lose your computers hard drive your data will be stored away in a safe place and will be one less problem to worry about.
The best approach to data backup is having 3 copies of all the files you see as being important to you. These files could include things like family photos, videos your mp3 music collection, all the things that if you were to lose them could not be easily replace, if at all.

So, let's have a look at how we can go about setting up the three backup copies of your data.
The first and easies copy is the one on your computer. This is where the first copy of your photos, music and other important files are kept, this is going to be your first back-up and one that you already have in place.
All I would say here is it's best to have all these files in some kind of order that makes sense to you and you know where everything is.

Your second back-up should be on some kind of removable media. You can use a few different types of storage here such as CD, DVD or even SD cards if you don't have a large amount of data to back-up.
The best form of storage media here by far if you have a lot to backup is an external hard drive.

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These come in many shapes and sizes as well as the storage size they offer so there is a drive to match most, if not everybody's backup needs.
These drives often come with some kind of easy to use backup software pre installed and it is then just a case of telling that software where the data is on your computer you want to backup, hence the tip earlier about knowing where your files and folders are.

The third backup should be offsite away from your home, this is to safe guard against things like fire or flood and also theft.
This form of backup is becoming easier to do now that there are a number of companies offering safe on-line backup solutions with yearly subscriptions.

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There are also free online backup options to for things like your photos and videos. YouTube is the obvious video solution, videos can be uploaded and if you don't want the world watching them you can simply mark them private. The one down side to using YouTube to store your videos is the limits they place on the file size and the videos length. YouTube are always making changes to these limits so it's worth checking them out to see if they match your needs.

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For your photos there service such as Google's picasa web which give you 1G of free storage and offer more space on a subscription basis which is offered at a very reasonable price. The other great advantage to using picasa is the the downloadable desktop application which you can use to edit, manage and then sync with your picasa web account.

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There are many other service for online storage and backup, far too many to fully list here. These services will help you keep your valuable data safe in the cloud as a quick search on Google will show.

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