Thursday, August 31, 2006

Simplicity Itself

Here i’s the solution for a Big Beige Box; the solution also takes care of my networked laptop computer.

The IDE drive sits in a cartridge which slides into the computer on rails. Kit costs about $15 to $30 depending on store.

On rising:

I slide the drive in & power on the computer, which detects (a) that it is the first boot of the day and (b) that an extra drive is in place, and so initiates an XCOPY of those files which have their archive bit set, and when done powers off the computer.

After I ha’ve finished starting the coffee:

I return to the machine, now powered off, slide out the IDE drive and power on.

The IDE drive-on-rails is kept in a closet away from the machine.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


Away from the computer.

How far way?

As far away as it takes to get you to stop and think before you act.

Back in the days of floppy disks we kept a spare copy of our data on a second diskette in the drawer.

When the first diskette got itself ruined by a flaky floppy drive, we said “No probs!”, brought out the second floppy diskette, popped it in the flaky drive and trashed that diskette too!

Pretty soon we learned to keep the second diskette in a colleague’s drawer and make them promise not to hand it over until after lunch time, or coffee break, whichever came first. The idea being that a few minutes careful thought can go a long way towards preserving precious data.

In my home office I keep the backup drive in a linen closet. The building catches fire my hard drive will probably survive.

Every now and then I leave a spare hard drive with my accountant a mile away. A jet plane hits my building I’ll die, but my data will be safe.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

What ought to be backed up?


You think not?

OK. Try this test: Right now, delete any folder on your hard drive. Empty your recycle bin.
Do you miss the folder?

Yes: Good thing you have a backup, isn’t it.

No: OK. So that was a useless folder anyway. Repeat the test.

Did you lie to me about deleting the folder?

Yes: Then I’ve called your bluff. Your current backup and recovery system isn’t good enough, is it? You don’t have confidence in it, do you?

Useful Link

Here's a link to a blog article about backing up blog templates. OK, so you don't have a blog. That is not the point.

The point is that even with your hard drive(s) backed up, there are online and offline data sources under your responsibility.