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How I survived my first computer crash

Sunday afternoon our family returned home from a nice car ride. When I opened the door to my office I smelled something burning. It was my computer!

I figured this would happen to me eventually. Recently I've been "prompted" to ensure that I have a good backup/recovery plan in case this ever happened. I sure am glad I took these promptings seriously. In fact, I've recently written a couple of articles about it:

Monday morning I took my computer to the repair shop. My last words to them were, "if my data cannot be recovered, don't worry about it. I have a good backup."

Thank you!

It's taken a few days to get all of my data back and my software reinstalled, but just imagine my true anguish if I hadn't set up my account. I would have lost my 9,327 digital images, my Legacy family file, all of my financial data, and much more. Ever since I backed up my data onto Mozy's off-site storage servers, I have had peace of mind about my data. Each evening, Mozy automatically backs up any new or modified files so I always have a complete backup.

The $4.95 I paid this month to have my 93 GB of data backed up at Mozy was the best $4.95 I've ever spent. I actually paid for two years up front which gave me three months free. If you have 2 GB or less, you can use for free. They don't even ask for a credit card. 2 GB is more than enough space if you just want to backup your Legacy family file. I suggest that everyone reading this article stop what they are doing right now, and sign up for or another comparable off-site backup service.

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Whew! that was close. I've never seen a computer on fire, just heard about them. Maybe it's the extra electricity in the air from the U.S. election. A friend once had both his home and work computers 'blow up' on the same day. It makes you wonder ...

Can I back up just the DATA information from Legacy rather than the entire program?

Kathi, yes. By default, it backs up your My Documents, Pictures, and other main folders. To backup your Legacy data, you need to right-click on the Mozy icon in the system tray and click on Configure. Then click on the File System tab and make sure that your Legacy\Data folder is checked. If it is, it will automatically backup your Legacy files.

For about $600 you can buy some real piece of mind with a Windows Home Server. If your computer where to ever crash, simply replace whatever parts (Usually the Hard Drive), insert the recovery disk and Viola...your computer is back the way it was the night prior.

The great thing about do not have to remember to do anything to complete a's all automatic.

I have over 4,000 photographs plus my research on my family tree on my computer. I would be devastated if I ever lost all of those pictures and research items.

Most failures do not damage the hard drive, often the operating system. Take the drive out and plug into another computer, you can save the data files and
reload the computer. Repair shops tend to take the fast path when told you have a backup. For a few dollars, you can buy a cable and power supply to connect ide drives to the usb port, the same unit allows you to make backups to external drives, cheap to get an older small hard drive for this use.

I use Carbonite which is similar to Mozy and it gives me real peace of mind. I also back up daily onto an external hard drive so I use a belt and braces approach to data security. Were my house to burn down then I would lose both my PC and the external hard drive - but my files would still be safe on the Carbonite server.

I would highly recommend CrashPlan which allows you to backup to friend's and family's computers and theirs to yours, automatically. All for about $25 one-off licence cost.

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