March 31, the day before April Fools’ Day, is designated World Backup Day. It should be something we’re all doing already – right? We have pictures on our phone, lots of contact information, our calendars and a ton of other data critical to our daily lives. Did you ever stop to think how you would recreate all that if you – say dropped your phone in the Thames River while you were at crew practice? What would happen if your roommate accidentally spilled a beer on your macbook and shorted out the logic board? Would you have to start re-writing your Honors Thesis? Would all your research from your summer internship be toast?
Backing up your data is a lot like an insurance policy. You have it, you keep paying the premium, and you hope you never have to use it. As the Service Desk Manager, I’ve seen some pretty interesting things … the laptop that came in with sugar ants crawling out of it, the one with vomit inside, and then the ones with the rain or water still dripping out out of them. While replacing parts in your laptop is a nuisance and often gets pricy, redoing hours and weeks worth of work is worse. Sometimes, it isn’t even possible.
The first thing I ask anyone who stops in at the ITSD with hardware is “do you have your data backed up?” – the usual response is to avert eye contact and quietly answer “No” and then we have “that” conversation.
Our rule of thumb is “If it is stored in one place, it isn’t backed up” .. If you have a spreadsheet in 2 different folders – NOT backed up. In that situation, your laptop is the single point of failure. If you the spreadsheet on your laptop and in Google sheets – great. It is highly unlikely that both of those sources will fail at the same time.
There are lots of back up options available to you today and some are even FREE! If you haven’t backed up recently – or ever – take a look at the information available for student backup options on the IT Service Desk webpage. If you still need some help, stop by during our normal business hours.
Don’t be an April Fool. Backup your data.