Thursday, June 14, 2007

I'm only saying this once (here)...

At my job, my secondary function is as a computer repair tech. And it'd be fair to say I've been on a computer every day since 1984, and some before that. I started with an Adam and went to PC Jr...and so on. I'm a rank newbie compared to my brother who runs where I work. OK, that's the preamble.

We have this joke we tell when folks come in with crashed hard drives, asking us if we can save the files on the drive.

We say "oh, relax--it's no problem; just restore the files from your backup".

Then we smile (inwardly), say nothing in the very, very awkward silence that follows, and watch the various emotions (like panic, shock,...) play across the faces of the people across the counter from us.

Factually, sometimes we can rescue the data; and if we can't sometimes very high-tech (read: expensive) labs that specialize in that sort of thing can retrieve the data. But there is no guarantee the data can be retrieved, period, if the drive crashes. Lotsa times, the data is more gone than a dropped diamond in a desert sandstorm.

So, this, only once: if you can't live without it, Back It Up. Twice. With one backup somewhere else than your home. (Think, if you have a backup on CD at your place, and your place burns, your CD backup data is...crispy...and not suitable for consumption). Backup data is two copies.

You'd think folks woulda got that message by now, but every week I am reminded just how many folks haven't absorbed it yet.


My good deed for the day.

1 comment:

Meaghan Champion said...

We actually have external extra harddrive which we unplug and take wherever... and my husband has 3 hard drives of back up - 2 for in the home, and one kept OFF-SITE.. at another location. So all our baby pics and essays and favourite news articles and assorted things like that are saved in 3 locations. I even have an old hard-drive stored at a vault in a friend's office in California, filled with all Cowichan related stuff, when I stopped doing activism full-time.

When it comes to that particular hard-drive, I consider it my own private life-insurance policy. (you know how unhappy certain people can be when you mess with their multi-million dollar slush funds.)

Learned the lesson well. :)