How, & How Often, Do You Back Up Your Files? [We Ask You]

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back up your filesIf you own any kind of digital device – from desktop to laptop, tablet to phone, and more besides – it’s important to back up your files on a regular basis. How regular is up to you, but leaving those documents, photos, albums, videos, programs, etc. sitting un-duplicated for too long could result in one of the horror stories Ryan recently discovered happening to you.

I have my own horror story of an old hard drive that died taking months worth of my poetry and short stories along with it. I could do nothing more than curse my bad timing/luck for a while and vow to keep on top of back-ups from that moment forward. I’m still laxer than I should be, but I do it more often than I used to. Lesson learned, partly at least.

This Week’s Question…

How, & How Often, Do You Back Up Your Files?

back up your files

So, for this week’s We Ask You column, we want to know two things: How often you back up your files? And how do you back them up on those occasions? I should say straight away that if you have any horror stories to recount about lost data as a result of not backing up regularly you should go and comment on Ryan’s article. After first reading it through, of course.

This article is designed to find out how often you back up your files, and how you do so on those occasions. The intention here is to take a straw poll as to how often the MakeUseOf readership backs up its files, while discovering what the most popular methods for doing so are. We may even discover some new or unknown-to-the-mainstream methods or services along the way.

Do you trust cloud-based storage solutions for back-ups or do you prefer physical-based storage solutions such as an external hard drive or USB stick? Have you tried a number of different services and settled on one in particular? If so, why? What does it offer above the others? Is there one make of physical storage device you trust above all others? Or are the claims made by many over security levels and failure rates mostly bunkum?

Drawing Conclusions

All comments will be digested to form conclusions in a follow-up post next week where we will detail what ‘You Told Us’. One reader will be chosen for the coveted ‘Comment Of The Week’, getting their name up in lights, the respect of other readers, and 150 MakeUseOf points to use for Rewards or Giveaways (as long as they have registered before commenting). What more motivation than that do you need to respond?

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‘We Ask You‘ is a weekly column dedicated to finding out the opinions of MakeUseOf readers. The questions asked are usually open-ended and likely to start a conversation. Some are opinion-based, while others see you sharing tips and advice, or advocating tools and apps to fellow MakeUseOf Readers. This column is nothing without you, as MakeUseOf is nothing without you.

Image Credit: Stuart Pilbrow

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Comments (56)
  • moshood

    I already backed up my data on my usb but since i still updating the folder with new files how do i back those up ? or does the backed up copy automatically update itself?

  • Patrick Ip

    For all my computers at home, they are backed up daily using two Windows Home Servers (one for data and one for media). On top of that, all my data are being replicated using robocopy among these two servers, another storage server and two Netgear ReadyNAS. Replication can be daily or weekly depending on the type of data. At the begining of the month, all relevant data will be replicated with encryption to a removable hard drive. I have six of these hard drives in rotation and they can be sent to off-site. In addition, I subscribed to ASUS Web Storge for unlimited backup on the cloud. For photos, I will also burn DVD and Bluray disks periodically to make sure none of the memory will be lost.

  • Kao Vang

    I haven’t really yet which I need to. My HDDs are a little on the older side.

  • Greg

    I keep files on a flash drive and will eventually put them on Google Drive.
    I think I need to backup bookmarks to, because Chrome lost half of them :O
    But I remember most of them anyway

  • Kevin

    I use a web based backup service (well known and well advertised). After the initial backup, it does incremental backups daily whenever I am powered up and online. It does this in the background and doesn’t seem to interfere with my using the internet nor any of my standard programs. I suffered a hard disk failure a few years back and lost a lot of data. I vowed then to never let that happen so easily. The company I work for has off site backup of all of our work computers that I am told back up every day after end of work.

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For more details, please read our disclosure.
Affiliate Disclamer

This review may contain affiliate links, which pays us a small compensation if you do decide to make a purchase based on our recommendation. Our judgement is in no way biased, and our recommendations are always based on the merits of the items.

For more details, please read our disclosure.