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World Backup Day

World Backup Day is held on the 31st March and it does what it says on the tin. It is a day that encourages people to make sure that they are backing up their data. In their words, “don’t be an April Fool”. The day also aims to teach people the role of data in their lives and why it is so important to do regular backups of your data. Last year support was given from companies such as BackBlaze and Western Digital. Various companies joined in to offer discount codes for free trials for their products.
World Backup Day was started by a few regular internet users who were concerned that people were not backing up their data like they should be. The world that we live in revolves around digital data. According to the site, it was predicted that 1.8 zettabytes of data would be produced in 2012. That’s around 210 billion movies worth. There is so much data being produced and a lot of it is not being backed up. If that data is damaged then it is potentially gone forever. That could vary from photos, work documents, emails… anything you store on a computer.
A hard drive is the most vulnerable component in your system. It is the part that has the highest chance of breaking unexpectedly due to the delicate mechanical parts that make it up. A read/write head hovers over a rotating platter in order to access data and if they collide then it could cause severe data loss.
If anything else inside the case, like a processor or graphics card, breaks then it can simply be removed and replaced. The computer will function just like it did before. If, however, the hard drive breaks then you can’t just put another one in and carry on. Everything you save to your computer is stored on your hard drive. If it busts then all your data goes down with it. If you have backed up your data then it is simply the case of transferring it to a new drive, but if you only had one copy then you could potentially lose it all forever.
World Backup Day doesn’t just mean you should only backup once a year. They aim to promote the idea of regular backup. Something like once a week is more like it, or perhaps more if you create a lot of data (this is especially the case in businesses). They say that it is a good idea to have two backup locations, one offsite and one local, just to be extra safe.
Local backups can be made to things like external hard drives or DVDs. You can get programs that will automate the process to save you doing it manually each time. For storing offsite, online cloud providers can be great for this. Something like Dropbox or SkyDrive will allow you access to your data wherever you are. However, they only allow a certain amount of data to be stored for free.
If you haven’t already got a backup system in place, hopefully World Backup Day encourages you to get one. It is a relatively quick process to set up and doing so will save you a lot of potential trouble down the line.


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