What Kind of Protection Do You Use?

Zelda External Hard Drive

Zelda External Hard Drive (Photo credit: astroot)

It is almost 2 AM and I am the very foolish man who isn’t asleep in bed. I could make up a great story about why I am not yet asleep but I don’t really have one.

Well, that is not entirely true. I have a story about why I haven’t gone to sleep yet but it is not great. Heck, I am not even sure it is good but it is what I have right now so I might as well share it with you.

Part of the reason I am still awake is because I was so busy with the birthday party and my kids I didn’t get much time on the ‘puter.  As some of you know last week we suffered from technical difficulties so I was forced to wipe the hard drive so that I could start over.

I did my best to back up all of my files so that I could simply reinstall and restore but have had more difficulty with that than I would like to say.

Tools and Resources

My tools and resources included DVDs and several external hard drives all of which I have used many times before. That is my way of saying that I am not a Luddite, Technophobe or rube when it comes to technology.

Call me a self taught “expert” who through this latest experience decided that I need more protection which is why I signed up for Backblaze (affiliate link). Here is a quick blurb about them:

Backblaze would like people to know that its service is the easiest way to backup all their data online. It requires no user set up; backs up unlimited data, and can also help locate a lost or stolen computer all for just five dollars per month.  Backblaze’s service delivers peace of mind with the assurance that users can access their files, any time, from any computer with an Internet connection. To learn more about Backblaze and this study visit blog.backblaze.com.

I did some basic research and decided that I liked what I saw enough to sign up with Backblaze (affiliate link) so that I didn’t have to deal with the same sort of nonsense again.

What I liked about them was the cost, ease of use and that it would help protect me if my computer was stolen as well as if the hardware failed.

There are other companies out there, but you have to pick one and this is where I am hanging my hat today.

Are You Protected?

Are you protected? What sort of arrangements have you made? Things happen and that is not just hype or hysteria.

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  1. Bev Wieber December 26, 2012 at 5:48 pm

    My latest wake up call as well, Jack. Running a quad core laptop, 2 tablets and 2 smartphones… need I say more. Lots of data, keeping personal and biz separately too complicated going into 2013. Will check them out, sign up, then simplify my life on my fave gadgets + my laptop.
    I know your family had a blessed Christmas. Now wishing you & the family the best New Year yet!

  2. Stan Faryna December 24, 2012 at 6:36 am

    Considering that an active solid state storage has a life expectancy of about a year and the previous hard drive technology, an average of three years, back up solutions should be a concern. There’s also the challenge of data format conversion which needs to be considered every five years.

    Glad to see you reflecting on these things, Jack.

    • Jack December 25, 2012 at 1:02 am

      Hi Stan,

      Well when you put it that way it makes you wonder why we bother using SS at all.

      • Stan Faryna December 25, 2012 at 5:16 am

        The problem with SS seems to be the quality of materials used. That problem translates to a lower threshhold of writes to something like a 1000 writes before risk of failure. The only advantage to the SS (that is obvious) is that SS reads faster than the disk-type technology: apps launch faster.

        Of course, hard drive manufacturers and resellers are going to make a lot more money selling us a new hard drive every year or two. The new apple laptops, for example, only come with SS hard drives.

        The optimum configuration (for geeks) is to have a SS loaded with Operating System and Apps (these do not demand frequent updates and writes) and then a disk-type harddrive for your files and backups.

  3. Tim Bonner December 24, 2012 at 4:29 am

    I use Carbonite to backup my computer online which sounds pretty similar to Backblaze.

    I also backup by blog daily to Dropbox using the WordPress BackUp To Dropbox plugin. You can get a free account with Dropbox and get 2GB of space (up to 18GB on the free account if you refer anyone).

    I don’t tend to backup my hard drive using external drives although maybe it’s something I should think about.

    • Jack December 25, 2012 at 12:55 am

      Hi Tim,

      I hear good things about Carbonite. I use Vaultpress for backing up my blog. When you look at all the time we put in it makes sense to protect things.

      I get a little crazy about this sort of stuff which is why I use external hard drives and the online service.

  4. Betsy Cross December 24, 2012 at 3:54 am

    I might regret saying it, but if my computer crashed or everything got blown away I ight be relieved. Starting fresh is a challenge.
    I wonder sometimes about houses burning down. I iagine the relief of all of that collected stuff …gone. You can’t take it with you anyways. Right?
    Photographs and faily history documents? aybe I’d want those.
    And people and pets.
    My mom’s writing a book and files on her Mac keep disappearing. She gets so stressed.
    So…the quicker you get something published the better. That’s all I have to say. 🙂

    • Jack December 25, 2012 at 12:53 am

      Hi Betsy,

      It really depends on what you lose. In my experience there is some relief in letting go of some things that aren’t all that meaningful, useful or important. but the pictures and some of the other stuff, that is not so easy.

      Hope your mom finishes her work soon.

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