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Many long years working with computers has taught me three very important rules.

Backup | Guy L. Pace
  1. Backup.
  2. Backup.
  3. Backup.

That’s right. No matter what you have, phone, tablet, laptop, or desktop, you MUST have some kind of backup established. The alternative is disaster.

The other day, I came up to my desktop computer and there on the screen I saw something called Mac OS Utility. It’s also called Mac OS Recovery screen. Oh, great!

As it turned out, there was a problem with the boot sector on the primary hard drive. Fortunately, I had a full backup right handy. So, I proceeded to run diagnostics and repair on the primary hard drive, erased it, re-formatted it, and restored from the backup.

That took about four hours. I use a bit over half of a two terabyte hard drive, so, yeah, it took that long. And, I didn’t lose a darn thing.

Take Stock

Events like this make me stop and take stock of my backup strategy to make sure I’m covering all my bases. Is the backup hard drive large enough? Well, I may want to look at getting a larger one. How about the laptop, phone and tablet? Yes, I still have lots of room in the cloud for all the devices to back up. I also make sure that they get the chance to back up overnight.

How many stories have you heard of folks going in to get an upgrade to a phone and losing all their data? In some cases, I fault the sales people for not making sure the device is backed up before doing the upgrade. In others, folks just need to follow the instructions provided with the device. This usually means setting up a “cloud” account with enough storage to handle the device(s), leave them connected to a wireless network and charging, and letting the devices back themselves up overnight. Every night.

So, here’s an opportunity to look at your desktop computer and your other devices. What would happen if one (or more) failed or you needed to restore something? Do you have backups? Can you recover your work-in-progress novel? Or, what about those short stories you have queued up for submissions?

Think about it.

Keep writing.

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