General Advice

Keeping A Close Backup

Making backups of your information is important, and you will always be told by IT tutors, technical support, your parents and yes, it does seem like a bit of a hassle, getting an external hard-drive or a usb stick to hold a single set of documents but it can come in handy.

First however, let me tell you a short story. In my first year of University, I had a complete meltdown, I lost all my data on my hard-drive and I suffered depression during this time due to a painful experience with a past relationship. I started however to wear a USB stick around my neck, this contained photographs of my pet dog, Toby. Whenever I felt like I couldn’t do anything, I immediately plugged my drive into my laptop to go through 500+ photos of my dog until I felt like I could continue working. This held me together because I felt like I had something to keep me going when I held it close to my chest.

A USB stick for instance, these are cheap and plentiful. I have about six all used for different things, one is my University documentation, all the work I’ve completed in the past two years, in case I need to pull up an assignment and hand it back in, in case of a server failure with the University (it does happen). The others are photos that I am too terrified of losing, photos of my family and my pets that mean the most to me when I feel like I can’t continue working on projects, it’s always nice to go through old photographs and feel a little less homesick.

An external hard-drive is a little more expensive, starting at around £30 and going all the way up to £150 based on hard-drive size and transfer speeds and extra functions like “cloud access”. However, if you are wanting to protect all of your data, music, videos, photos, documents like I do, then it’s worth investing in one, and every so often, format the drive and backup all the data once more. I prefer to do it every term so that I have the freshest backup if my computer dies whilst I’m at University, I have a backup in case things go pear shaped.

However, another backup option is cloud storage. Places like Google Drive and Dropbox are especially useful when you have little amounts of data but you want to access them everywhere.  I know it’s a drag to do and takes time, but in the end, having all your data backed up in case of an emergency is a wonderful thing we can do and achieve.

Speak to you all soon!

Conor ^-^

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