Safe Computing – Part 1

Over my almost thirty years of working with computers, I’ve picked up a few tips and tricks that I’d like to share. I’m going to start very generally and over the next few months (hopefully!), I’ll get more specific. So here we go!

  1. Suspenders and a belt. I think everyone knows this one… But still, I’ve seen lots of people lose LOTS of data — including songs and entire albums (yikes!). So… If the only place that your data exists is on your one and only hard drive, your data (meaning your songs, your contact database, etc.) simply doesn’t exist. If you believe this to be a computing law, then your life will be so much better. So, BACKUP your drives. And do it often.
  2. Two places at once. Backing up is just the starting point though. Ideally, you should have your data exist in two geographically unique places simultaneously. Let’s say you have your backup drive permanently hooked up to your computer. What happens if there’s a fire? If you’re robbed? Water damage? Well, what happens is you lose both your main drive and your backup. So, you should backup up your drive and then take the backup to a secondary location. In the best case scenario, the backup would be stored half way around the world, but if you’re like me, that isn’t a practical possibility. Try to, at the very least, move the drive to another room in your house. I take my backup drives down to my storage area.
  3. Take a nap. To me, it’s surprising how many people leave their computers on 24/7. Computers need to sleep just like people do. From my experience, many cases of computing wonkiness (that’s an official term!) can be cured with a simple restart or shut down. I turn off my computer at night and then turn it on again in the morning. It’s easy to do and it gives me a better computing experience. It’s also better for the environment.

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