What is a Backup?
A backup is an extra copy of your files in case you lose access them. This protects you from:
- Stolen or lost device
- Forgotten passwords preventing access
- Devices breaking or malfunctioning
- Virus or malware
- Fire or disaster
Why is Backing Up Important?
You might be thinking “Backup? What’s the Point, I don’t have anything important to backup!“, and that’s just wrong. Think about all of your:
- Family photos and videos – fun times, people loved, people lost
- Boring but Important tax/legal documents
- Cool pictures you found on the internet
- Those other photos and videos (Yes, those ones – you won’t be able to take those again)
- Emails and correspondence
It’s nice just to have all of your digital stuff in one place, and know that it’s all there, and all safe.
What’s the Best Way To Back Up?
Experts recommend that you have three copies of your important files.
- The copy on your computer (the files in use)
- A backup in the cloud service like OneDrive or Dropbox (For easy syncing and recovery if your device dies)
- A backup on an external drive or USB stick, kept some where safe (just in case the cloud backup didn’t sync, or something went really wrong)
Backing up on MacOS, iPhone and iPad
Apple make it super easy to back up – just enable iCloud backups on your devices and store all of your files in your iCloud drive – your files will be syncronised between your devices and the cloud, creating your first backup.
- Setting up iCloud backups on iPhone and iPad
- Storing files in iCloud Drive on iPhone, iPad, Windows and Mac
On MacOS you can take the additional measure of backing up to an external hard drive using TimeMachine, and storing your own physical backup in a safe spot.
Backing Up on Windows
Windows has built-in backup tools too. OneDrive will sync your files to the cloud and keep a backup there, and Windows 10 has built in backup and restore features, so that you can keep a backup on a USB disk and store it somewhere safe.
Android also provides the tools to backup the data and settings on your phone or tablet
That’s Too Much Hassle for Me!
If that’s all somehow too much, just go low tech – copy your files to a USB stick and keep it somewhere secure.
- Check in on your backups every now and then and make sure all of your files are being included – you don’t want to find out things weren’t working until it’s too late
- Store your physical backup at a trusted friend or family members house, or in a safe deposit box – then if your house catches fire or gets hit by a meteorite or something, you’re covered
- Subscribe to BackupBudgie to remind you to keep on top of your backups