Backup: What should I backup and how?

This question comes up a lot and the answer is found in understanding what data is important to you. Everyday we generate a data in many different forms – emails, photos, and documents are among the most popular formats. Is some of that data expendable? Email may be stored on an email server online and doesn’t necessarily require a backup. Family photos on the other hand are valuable and can be missed if they are gone.

Coming up with a list of important data is the first step. Next you need to understand how often that data changes. If there is a lot of change daily, then you will want daily backups If there is little change to the data, a longer interval between backups will suffice.

Lastly you need to decide how many “points in time” you wish to keep. Do you want to keep the last backup only, or do you want to be able to keep the last three and reach back in time to restore a document that you may have recently changed or accidently deleted?

Best practice recommends that you follow the 3-2-1 rule of data backup. There should be three copies of the data – the data on your computer and a backup to two external medias such as external hard disks or tapes. One of those two external medias should be stored offsite. With this strategy, you can avoid disaster if your internal hard drive fails as you have a copy on a media that is outside the computer. Having one external media stored away from your business or home ensures that at least one copy of the data survives in case of a disaster or building loss.

It can get complex, but we are here to help you with all your backup needs – let us know how we can help!

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