Data on Data - Basic Backups

By: DataPilot , 2:20 AM GMT on March 24, 2014

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My prior blog posting included a couple of long-winded comments about a neighbor's recent run-in with Cryptolocker and the need for everyone to back up their computer's data regularly. I cringe a bit when I read through the posting now, since I seem to have done a better job at pontificating about backups than explaining how to do them. I hate it when I do that.

The purpose of this post is to rectify the situation. In the "Data on Data" series, I'm going to try to explain some of the backup options available and how they can be utilized to create a backup and restoration strategy that is effective for you. No two people use a computer in exactly the same way, so there is no one-size-fits-all strategy that works for everyone. Picking appropriate tools and using them in a way that aligns with your strategy is what you ultimately want to achieve.

First, a little background on me. I'm an IT professional, specializing in the management of large amounts of valuable data. Data is what I do, day in, day out. (I didn't name myself Data for nothing.)

Part of my job is ensuring that the data under my care is well protected, while at the same time keeping it as available as possible for legitimate work purposes. Those two diametrically-opposed goals can make my work very interesting - or maddening, depending on the day - but they can never be ignored. I bring up that point so that you, as the owner of your data, understand that you should keep both protection and accessibility in mind as you plan backup and restoration strategy.

Protection AND Accessibility? Backup AND Restoration? Huh? Isn't just making a backup good enough?

Well... yes and no. The important thing is that you keep all of those factors under consideration when you develop your backup strategy.

Notice that I called it a "backup strategy", not a "backup procedure". A backup procedure is a routine that you follow regularly. You just do it. Or, better yet, you automate it and let the computer do all the work. (We'll get back to that point later.) A backup strategy - or more accurately, a backup and restoration strategy - is the plan that you make to minimize loss of data due to unforeseen circumstances. Your backup procedure is just one part of your backup and recovery strategy.

For crying out loud, Data, you're making this backup thing awfully complicated. All I use my computer for is ordinary stuff. Why can't I just configure the backup program that came with my computer and be done with it?

Vendor-provided backups are one option, and in many cases, they're also the best option. In fact, if you haven't formulated your backup and recovery strategy yet, the vendor-provided software is an excellent place to start. It's always a heck of a lot better than nothing. Adopting a basic backup procedure is easy, but developing a full-blown backup and recovery strategy takes time. So let's do the easy part first.

If you haven't at least got basic backups in place for all of your computing devices - and by "computing devices", I mean "desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones" - do it now. Here are some handy links to help you get started. If your device isn't listed, Google for it. Information on "How to back up 'device X'"is usually not hard to find online.

Microsoft Windows 7 Backup

Macintosh Backups

iCloud Backup (for iPhone, iPad and other Apple devices)

Samsung Galaxy Backup (Verizon)

Once you've gotten the basic vendor-provided backup procedure in place, we can talk about formulating your backup and recovery strategy. In my next blog posting, we'll discuss some of the options available, and how you can use them to your advantage.

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181. WeatherWise
5:44 AM GMT on March 01, 2015
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
180. WeatherWise
11:45 PM GMT on December 31, 2014
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
179. WeatherWise
3:02 AM GMT on December 25, 2014
It's Christmas Eve! Won't be long before Santa arrives!




A friend sent me this gif this evening.
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
178. sandiquiz
12:01 PM GMT on December 24, 2014


Data, if you still check out Wu I wanted you to know that I wish you and your family a safe, and peaceful, Christmas :)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 307 Comments: 27906
177. WeatherWise
4:42 PM GMT on December 22, 2014
My Cardinals Send You Good Wishes for Christmas and a Happy New Year!





While I slept the WU elves wrapped a beautiful blue AC
ribbon border around this one. That was exciting to wake up to.
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
176. WeatherWise
2:28 PM GMT on December 08, 2014
Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer A little sketch I did a few years back! It is always strange what inspires me to start sketching. I think in this case it was pretty wrapping paper. I tried sketching a Christmas Moose and I think I perhaps did this sketch after seeing more pretty wrapping paper. Not sure as did this in December of 2010.

Have a Happy Monday!
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
175. WeatherWise
5:37 AM GMT on December 01, 2014
It's December! Best Wishes!

White Rabbits, White Rabbits, White Rabbits!



Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
174. GardenGrrl
6:19 PM GMT on November 27, 2014
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 275 Comments: 10481
173. sandiquiz
2:57 PM GMT on November 26, 2014
Don't know whether you will see this but wanted to say .... I wish you and your family a very Happy Thanksgiving.

Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 307 Comments: 27906
172. sandiquiz
10:03 AM GMT on November 01, 2014
Still Crazy??

Wishing you a White Rabbits, White Rabbits, White Rabbits and a very Happy Month.



The 11th of November is Remembrance Day here in the UK.
To help support all old soldiers and war widows we buy a poppy we wear,
Each of the poppies is hand made by old soldiers:)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 307 Comments: 27906
171. WeatherWise
4:31 AM GMT on November 01, 2014

Hi Data!

Hope you had a Happy Halloween with lots of fun.

It is now November believe it or not!
A month to think about what we are most thankful for.
Best Wishes for a Good November


Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
169. WeatherWise
3:57 AM GMT on October 26, 2014
Hahaahaha, Briar and GG , Sandi and Data, Briar, you know how I don't always read carefully and was first thinking you were dittoing to GG's comment and I was thinking WHAT? I can't read that but then I reread your comment and realized you said to Sandi's comment.

Hi Data, just tapping on your screen one more time and reminding you it is Halloween almost
and almost forgot that I have a Halloween sketch to share:

Happy Halloween!
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
168. BriarCraft
12:12 AM GMT on October 09, 2014
Ditto to what Sandi said:
I like crazy....that's acceptable.:-)
Much better than MIA!
Take care :-)
Member Since: June 21, 2004 Posts: 92 Comments: 4646
167. GardenGrrl
4:01 PM GMT on October 01, 2014
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 275 Comments: 10481
166. WeatherWise
12:48 PM GMT on October 01, 2014
Hi Data, It's October


Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
165. sandiquiz
9:55 PM GMT on September 30, 2014
Quoting 164. DataPilot:

Hello WeatherWise! You've been very persistent in my absence. :)

I'm at work right now - crazy day - but will try to get back to you later.

I like crazy....that's acceptable.:-)
Much better than MIA!
Take care :-)

Wishing you a Very Happy month of October :)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 307 Comments: 27906
164. DataPilot
7:32 PM GMT on September 30, 2014
Hello WeatherWise! You've been very persistent in my absence. :)

I'm at work right now - crazy day - but will try to get back to you later.
Member Since: January 5, 2009 Posts: 11 Comments: 1289
163. WeatherWise
7:27 PM GMT on September 30, 2014
Hi Data, Just dropping back by to see what you are up to?

A friend taught me a long time ago that the yellow rose was a symbol for friendship.

So here is to all of my good blogger friends! Happy Last Day of September!





Still not the rose show - a rose that I found in a beautiful streetside garden this am.
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
162. WeatherWise
2:12 AM GMT on September 22, 2014


Hi Data, I have a horse photo for you. I was up on top of the
mountain last weekend and the B&B owners where I was
staying had three horses that they brought with them from
Texas.


Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
161. sandiquiz
1:53 PM GMT on September 17, 2014
Just dropping by to say "hi"...
How are things with you, and the horses?
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 307 Comments: 27906
160. WeatherWise
9:27 PM GMT on September 05, 2014
Hi Data, How are you? Checking on you to see what's going on. Wiggle a toe or something to let us know you are still kicking! Take care!


A Little Birdie Told Me I Should Check on YOU!


>
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
159. GardenGrrl
9:56 AM GMT on September 01, 2014
White Rabbits, White Rabbits, White Rabbits, Happy September!
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 275 Comments: 10481
158. WeatherWise
4:04 AM GMT on September 01, 2014
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
157. WeatherWise
3:05 PM GMT on August 27, 2014
Hi Data, Just dropping by to say hi. I have recovered from my DC walking and am back to my old self again. Just taking a lazy pace, today, getting reved up to go for a midday walk. Lighting should be beautiful and hoping to spot a bird or two.

Leaving you a special butterfly photo from the local butterfly garden - the giant swallowtail.

Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
156. DataPilot
2:09 PM GMT on August 26, 2014
Sandi, Briar, GG, Linda- thank you all for stopping by. A LOT was happening at work last week, and our internet is barely functional now. Am using my phone for this comment.

Wow, droids DOS'd (denial of serviced attacked ) NWS? Holy moly. That's worth going into town and finding good internet access just to read it.

Will try to get back here as soon as I can to provide personalized responses.
Member Since: January 5, 2009 Posts: 11 Comments: 1289
155. Thoughtsteader
12:11 AM GMT on August 26, 2014
Speaking of technical problems, I thought you'd get a real kick out of this:

Rogue Android App Takes Down NWS Website

I wondered why I wasn't able to get a forecast this afternoon. Here's the latest update.

Last Update: Tue Aug 26 00:10:01 2014 GMT
NWS TOC Operational Status Message
Mon Aug 25 23:02:39 2014 GMT

NOXX01 KWBC 252257
TO - ALL CUSTOMERS
SUBJECT - POINT FORECAST ISSUES
.
NIDS CONTINUE TO WORK WITH AKAMAI TO BLOCK THE
TRAFFIC THAT IS THE PROBLEM. A CHANGE WAS MADE
TO THE AKAMI CONFIG FOR FORECAST.WEATHER.GOV, BUT IT HAS NOT STOPPED THE BAD TRAFFIC YET.
WE
CONTINUE TO WORK TO RESOLVE THIS ISSUE.

Talk about a bad day at the office.
Member Since: January 16, 2014 Posts: 42 Comments: 555
154. GardenGrrl
2:23 AM GMT on August 22, 2014
Hi, making a quick run through saying Howdy's. It's my short weekend and dang, I have lots to do that involves being a responsible adult instead of playing on the blogs. Guess you can relate to that. Pat the horses for me ok.
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 275 Comments: 10481
153. BriarCraft
3:55 AM GMT on August 21, 2014
It's been good to see you out and about in WUville lately. And thanks for stopping by my place for a visit. Just curious, with all the problems you have with NUWU and iOS, have you tried http://classic.wunderground.com/blog/. It may not be as slick as NUWU, but it loads fast for me and might be more agreeable with iOS for you.

Anyway, I would love an update on Vicki and Zelda when you get the chance.
Member Since: June 21, 2004 Posts: 92 Comments: 4646
152. sandiquiz
12:33 PM GMT on August 15, 2014
I am glad to read you are "here" and around, and everything is fine, except the technical side of posting comments.

My IOS problems are twofold.... It often drops out and takes me back to Safari, and if I open two tabs, when I return to the first, from the second, it sometimes reloads the page wiping anything I might have written before I wandered off to another tab and site! lol
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 307 Comments: 27906
151. DataPilot
8:06 PM GMT on August 14, 2014
Aww, what a lovely butterfly photo! I've tried and tried to photograph insects, but have never quite been successful at it. You have such talent.

I've been here on WU, browsing, but haven't posted much to the blogs due to technical difficulties with the new website. The site works fine from a PC, but not at home on iOS. It took me 3 tries to get last night's comment on GG's blog. Ugh. Anyway, I'm here, I'm fine, I'm lurking on your blog, just not posting much. :)

I'm sorry that walking causes you so much pain. At least ibuprofen and baby aspirin help. Maybe your doctor can recommend something stronger if the pain starts disrupting your life too much. Even if you only take it to sleep at night, it could be helpful.

I *love* the Smithsonian, especially the American History museum! My dad and I visited there in 1995. Mom couldn't travel that far (too painful for her), so Dad asked me to come instead. We went to all the Smithsonian museums and saw the First Ladies' gown exhibit. I couldn't believe how small some of those gowns were! Either the First Ladies wearing them were also very tiny, or they wore some mighty tight corsets. Probably both.

My very, very favorite exhibit at the American History museum was the old Jaquard Looms. Those looms were one of the first "programmable" machines, a direct predecessor to computers. The looms were fed long strings of boards with patterns drilled through them - similar to old computer punch cards - and from the hole patterns, they created fancy weaving. Because no one else was as fascinated by the looms as I was that day, a Smithsonian employee not only gave me a specialized tour of the machines, but let me climb under one to see its mechanisms. Such a treat.
Member Since: January 5, 2009 Posts: 11 Comments: 1289
150. WeatherWise
7:25 PM GMT on August 14, 2014
Hi Data, Good to see you out and about around the blogs. We missed you.

I am just back from a trip to Washington DC. Still uploading my photos. Seems the uploads are so slow. Plus all of my photos are on my laptop and I really don't use it that much when at home. I upload a few and then forget to go back and upload a few more. Just going through the photos to decide which ones to upload - So many have photos of other families standing in the middle of them - I hate to post those even though might be my best shot of the inside of the Lincoln Memorial.

Quite honestly, it was difficult to grab many outside shots as I was busy trying to keep up and cross the street before the seconds ticked off of the street crossing sign. Hahaha....not to mention me digging in purse for another ibeprofen or baby aspirin for the walking pains. So many of my shots are inside shots and am thinking perhaps I should upload those to photobucket.com and link here.

So I am dragging my feet, plus I was still hurting the first few days back. Today I am feeling better, no pain except that arm or shoulder or whereever that pain is located which I could barely feel with the other pains from long days of walking in DC. It is letting me know that yes it is still here. However, I can live with that without med - mostly hurts at night. I sound like such a whiny I know. Sorry, I just am not used to pain and never take any meds.

I think I have some great shots of the First Ladies's gowns that might be fairly easy to put together without too many decisions. They were on the third floor of the Smithsonian American HIstory Museum. I really enjoyed reminiscing through the that museum - even took a photo with Julia Childs. If that was a lifesize photo, she was VERY tall and I was VERY short!

A few pretty butterflies have arrived to my area. I am seeing lots of small ones and lucky to see one big one.

Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
149. sandiquiz
3:29 PM GMT on August 05, 2014
It was great to see you in my blog, and I am so pleased all four-legged friends are doing well, but not so pleased to see that four-wheeled friends are playing you up!
It is great, though, that the company will cover the repair.

Take care, hope it is soon repaired so you can get out and about again!
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 307 Comments: 27906
148. GardenGrrl
3:03 PM GMT on August 01, 2014
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 275 Comments: 10481
147. sandiquiz
9:23 AM GMT on August 01, 2014
White Rabbit, White Rabbit, White Rabbit
Wishing you a very happy month of August :)

Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 307 Comments: 27906
146. sandiquiz
4:12 PM GMT on July 28, 2014
Yes, are you OK?

We worry about you and your four legged friends:)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 307 Comments: 27906
145. BriarCraft
10:37 PM GMT on July 27, 2014
Time for an update, Data. Did you wander up the McKenzie River and decide to relax for awhile?
Member Since: June 21, 2004 Posts: 92 Comments: 4646
144. sandiquiz
11:32 AM GMT on July 20, 2014
Morning, how are things over at your about now?
I do hope both horses are recovering well, and that everything else is now running smoothly.
I have seen you around WU- ville, but not in your own blog, so I know you are okay :-)
Have a great Sunday.
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 307 Comments: 27906
143. BriarCraft
11:06 PM GMT on July 19, 2014
I think I drove the mower over a ground bee nest this morning. Happily I didn't get stung, but there were half a dozen puzzled bees circling around me for awhile wondering if they should.

Just wondering -- have you been able to take Zelda for a ride yet? I guess Vicki won't be up to that for awhile yet, but she could maybe walk alongside you and Zelda now.
Member Since: June 21, 2004 Posts: 92 Comments: 4646
142. WeatherWise
6:15 PM GMT on July 11, 2014
Hi Data, Glad the horses are more stable now and home and able to be out and about even if with a grazing muzzle. Sounds like you are a very smart and caring caretaker and very clued into what is going on with them. Hope you have not more sickness with them especially not laminitis.

Don't eat the Wildflowers!

Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
141. BriarCraft
10:28 PM GMT on July 10, 2014
It does seem strange that some animals don't have sense enough to avoid foods that are bad for them and/or to stop eating when they have eaten enough. This sort of trouble is not unique to horses. I have heard of dogs that eat themselves sick. I wonder, is it only animals whose evolution man has messed with? Otherwise, it seems that evolution would have taken care of such tendencies long since.

The good news is you have a grazing muzzle to keep silly horses from eating themselves sick. To bad you have to do that and fence off your favorite apple trees, but at least you have workable solutions.

Here's to a happily boring summer for you and all your critters.

Member Since: June 21, 2004 Posts: 92 Comments: 4646
140. clearlakemike
3:52 AM GMT on July 08, 2014
Hi DataPilot. Got any tips on computer forensics? Like evidence of hacking? Briar said you are also watching over a cat colony. I have one as well that I think I have finally stabilized through several years of trapping and fixing. I started out feeding just a few and then their population started exploding!! They are interesting creatures and have become good company, lol. They have sort of taken over.

As for backups, I use the iCloud and external hard drives for documents and photos, etc. More of a drag and drop thing. My partner, who is in IT also, is always on my case about being more thorough about it. But I have the photos thoroughly backed up at least. Have been trying to back them up into the cloud also via Flickr more and more as they have a lot of storage available now.
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 149 Comments: 2355
139. sandiquiz
7:20 PM GMT on July 05, 2014
Not being a 'horsey' person, I knew nothing of the problems that can occur....it sounds to me having the two horses is far more trouble than a class full of hormonal teenagers!!

Hope all goes well, and Vicki adapts to her new, lush pasture.
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 307 Comments: 27906
138. DataPilot
7:06 PM GMT on July 05, 2014
Sandi, seeing Vicki wandering around her pasture again, grazing, does indeed put happiness in my heart. And for some reason, Zelda is thrilled that she's once again able to get into the barn. There's plenty of shade trees in her pasture, so I see no advantage in using the barn during the summer, but Zelda likes it. I think she was unhappy about being locked out during Vicki's convalescence.

When I first turned Vicki out, she immediately attacked an apple tree, devouring sour green apples. Ack! That's not good, because little green apples can cause severe digestive upset and even laminitis and/or founder (a potentially fatal hoof disease). No horse needs that, especially not a surgical colic survivor with a propensity towards laminitis. So, I pulled her away from the tree and put her grazing muzzle back on. :(. Then, Hubby took a chain saw to all of the lower branches of the highest producing apple trees, since we don't like eating those apples anyway. There are also two other apple trees that we do eat the apples off of, so I'm going to have to fence them off.

Vicki's hooves have also been very sensitive since they were trimmed a week ago. While some of that sensitivity is probably due to her transitioning from standing in a stall with deep sawdust bedding to walking around on rocky ground, I do worry about the possibility of laminitis. I'm not going to let her graze in the pasture without the muzzle until she's walking sound. I don't see obvious signs of laminitis, but the ouchy-footedness in combination with noticeable hoof wall quality changes since being hospitalized has me a little worried. However, it is normal to see hoof quality changes whenever a horse suddenly changes feed (like going from pasture to hospital fare).

I wrote a blog entry about green grass causing laminitis in horses a few years ago. But really, almost anything that causes extreme physical distress for a horse can also cause laminitis. Overindulgence in green grass is a very common cause.
Member Since: January 5, 2009 Posts: 11 Comments: 1289
137. sandiquiz
11:28 AM GMT on July 05, 2014
I hope Vicki going out into the field helped erase the memories of another 3rd of July.
With that in mind, I hope you had a lovely 4th of July :)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 307 Comments: 27906
136. WeatherWise
9:50 PM GMT on July 04, 2014
Hi Data! HOpe your are having a great 4th!

>
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
135. calpoppy
3:45 PM GMT on July 04, 2014
Happy 4th!!

Member Since: February 18, 2008 Posts: 61 Comments: 4284
134. DataPilot
3:19 AM GMT on July 03, 2014
Thanks for stopping by and leaving good wishes, Sandi, WeatherWise, GardenGrrl and Briar. I do hope that July will be restful (and a lot less expensive) than the prior 2 months.

Tomorrow is Vicki and Zelda's Big Day. I will be turning Vicki out into the pasture for the first time since she got sick. I can't predict exactly how the horses will react, but I bet they're going to be happy.

Vicki is the second horse I've had that colicked severely enough to require surgery. My first experience with colic surgery was 11 years ago, when my wonderful gelding - appropriately named "Gem" - wound up on the table. Once the surgeon had opened him up and could see the cause for the colic, he knew the situation was hopeless. I will never forget sitting in the waiting room at OSU, signing my name on that green piece of paper, a request that my beautiful Gem be euthanized. July 3, 2003 will haunt me forever.

But July 3, 2014 will be the day when Vicki gets to have her normal horsey life back. Triumph over tragedy. That horribly expensive surgery was worth every penny.
Member Since: January 5, 2009 Posts: 11 Comments: 1289
133. BriarCraft
11:22 PM GMT on July 02, 2014
Zelda and Vicki must be thrilled to be close to each other again. I feel for you on Vicki's hospital bill. Even cat surgery is pricey any more. But when the alternative is death, what are you going to do but suck it up and pay? I know there was no guarantee that Vicki would recover, so with her return to health, you are at least going to get your money's worth. happyhappydance
Member Since: June 21, 2004 Posts: 92 Comments: 4646
132. WeatherWise
11:42 PM GMT on July 01, 2014



Happy Summer!



Happy Summer to you!

Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 122 Comments: 4020
131. GardenGrrl
9:46 AM GMT on July 01, 2014
Generic but heartfelt "White Rabbits, White Rabbits, White Rabbits!"
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 275 Comments: 10481

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About DataPilot

Many years ago, I was a real pilot. Now I just "fly" computers. My avatar is from Flight Simulator. This is what short final really looks like!

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