Why is Computer Backup Important?
If you've ever been in a situation in which you've almost completed an important project, only to have your computer spontaneously crash seconds before hitting the "save" button, you understand how frustrating losing your data can be.
Now, imagine losing all your important files - everything from business files, to family photos, to your tax returns - permanently. Although many of us prefer to adhere to the mantra of "it'll never happen to me", the truth is, it could. And as computers continue to become the principle way in which many people conduct important transactions, this type of thinking is becoming increasingly risky.
What's worse, the modern computer is ever more vulnerable to the imminent threats multiplying on the Internet - everything from adware, to spyware, to viruses. In fact, in 2003 alone, the number of computer viruses increased by 11%.
Do I Need to Backup All of my Computer Data?
The short answer to this question is no, you do not need to back up all of the files on your computer. However, there are certain files you should definitely backup, so that in the event your computer decides it's time is up, you won't be at a total loss.
So just what files should you be backing up? Although the choice is ultimately a personal one, here are some suggestions:
- Information and files relating to banking or other financial transactions
- Digital photos
- Purchased/downloaded music from the Internet
- Purchased/downloaded software from the Internet
- Important work/school projects
- Email contact list
- Internet browser bookmarks
Where is the Safest Place to Store My Important Computer Data?
Depending on what backup software you use, some will limit the locations from which your data will be stored. For example, they may only backup data found in the following locations on your PC.
- \My Documents and subdirectories on any drive, except for My Videos, My Pictures, and My Music
- C:\Documents and settings and subdirectories
- Outlook Personal Folders (pst files)
For this reason, it is generally recommended that you store your most important files in your "My Documents" folder.
Although our work, family, and social obligations often fill our days, the excuse of not having sufficient time to backup your computer is simply not a worthy one. With the backup software currently available, it has never been easier or faster to ensure your files are safe and secure.