I consider my data important, and since I tend to making fun of guys who lose their data*1, I take special care of my data. HDD tends to fail, computer can be stolen and cryptoviruses tend to encrypt hard drives, disasters happen.
A backup (a copy of your usefull data in a safe place), is the only protection against data loss. You don’t have to trust me on this one, but you don’t have to read further if you don’t accept this axiom.
Before doing backups, some questions may need an answer:
- What is the price of my data?
- Do my first born or cat pictures are worth this 100$ external hard drive?
- Will I lose clients in case of data loss?
- Will I lose one day/hour/year of work?
- How confidential my data is?
- Entrepise data?
- Family pictures?
- Secret love?
- Which disaster to forsee?
- Fire, Flood, Dam break?
- Jaleous companion?
Theses questions can be used to determine what should be backuped (data, system, …), at which frequency, and where to store your backups.
Here is my current backup strategy:
- Daily local backup (on the same drive that holds the data, will be replaced by snapshots soon).
- Online backup of day-to-day use files on Dropbox.
- Monthly (or so) backup to one of two external hard drives pushed to a bank safe.