Monthly PC Tips

Back Up Your Backup

January 2018 – by Per Christensson

We all know that backing up your data is important. But have you ever thought of backing up your backup?

If disaster strikes and you have to recover your files from a backup, it better work. Otherwise your data may be lost forever. To prevent such a tragedy, you should test your backup regularly (like once a month). You can also back up your data locally and online for added redundancy. But at the beginning of 2018, I would like to suggest a third option — backing up your backup.

Two Seagate Backup Drives

Each year, I create a fresh backup of my data on a new external hard drive. The photo above shows the drives I used for 2016 and 2017. You can create an extra backup by manually backing up your important files or by cloning your current backup disk to the extra hard drive. Regardless of the method you choose to create the additional backup, it will serve as a "backup backup" that you can use in case something happens to your regular backup drive.

Another reason I backup my data to a new drive each year is so I can continually clean out old files from my computer's primary storage device without worry. For example, I can get rid of photos and videos I'm pretty sure I don't need without overthinking it. In the rare case that I regret deleting something, I can retrieve it from one of my backup drives, which I have archived somewhere in a secret location.

I just purchased a 2 terabyte drive for my 2018 backup and it was less than $70. While I usually pay more high-performance storage devices, a standard USB hard drive is fine for a single backup. $70 is not bad for the peace of mind knowing all my data through the end of 2017 is safely stored somewhere.

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