How would you use the
data backup process to protect your data?
The actual data backup
To do a manual backup of your data is easy, you go to the folder where you have
your documents, select the ones you want to backup, open the folder on the
backup device and copy the files there. Simple. (You could make a
batch file (see the "How To..." section for writing batch files) and the
Scheduler to have it run at a certain time and date).
Unless you create a new folder each time you do the backup you have no way to keep track of changes with
out going to the properties of the document and looking at the change date.
If you have a few documents that you change infrequently then you could create
a new folder for your backup and then copy the backup into that folder, time
consuming but you will have a history of your documents back to when you started
your backup procedure.
Using software to automate your process along with a set schedule of
when the backup occurs is the simplest way to insure you have a current backup
of your data incase of a disaster.
You can use the built in software that comes with your OS or you can purchase
a third party program.
Data backup process
To use the built in software in Windows 2000 or XP you have to enable
it, it is disabled by default (to find it use the help function and type in
"backup"). Once you have it enabled you can set it to run on a
daily basis for any document/folder or drive with the built in scheduler. For
those that would rather use third party software for backup the one I am most
familiar with is Backup Exec, for a single license it is over 400 dollars, as I
was asked by an executive when I approached her for the approval to purchase the
software she said: "How much is the data worth?" So you will have to ask
yourself the question: "How much is my data worth? How long will it take me to
recreate a document or series of documents? How much money will I lose while I
am recreating the documents? Can the documents be recreated or will they be lost
In the USA, you may not be aware but if you have employees the FTC
requires you to keep all email correspondence for seven
years. You may want to check the new rules out as soon as possible.
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Be aware that backing up the "System state" is not a complete backup of your
OS drive. I have found in the past that the chances of recovering a failed OS
with the backup of the system state to be less than reliable,
most of the recoveries were so corrupt I had to reinstall the OS, and every application also.
You may want to invest and learn how to use "imaging" software and create images
of any mission critical computer's boot drive...
One last note:
Another storage medium that I have not mentioned is a
server, I did not add
it as a normal backup device because not all medium or small businesses have one
available. The server gives you a better choice for storage and backup with
increased redundancy of the hardware and security of the operating system.
Before you start your
back up be sure to have adequate storage for the backups...