How to Properly Back Your Computer Up
for the New Year and Beyond
When was the last time you backed up your PC? Last week? Last month? Last year? Never at all?
Don’t feel bad if your answer is a resounding “never.” You’re not alone.
Recent research reveals that four in five Americans who own a computer (80% of us) have NEVER backed up their computer.
This data is troubling because failing to backup a computer can cause lots of pain and frustration if a computer fails, there’s a natural disaster, or a device gets stolen.
We recommend the following plan for the safest and most secure way to protect your PC:
Using the 3-2-1 Method to Secure Your Data
As you move into 2022 and focus on making the very best decisions going forward, Market Screener– a financial and tech news website– recommends that you follow the 3-2-1 rule for backing your computer. Meaning, you make three copies of your data, including two off-site (in two different options) and one local. In your case, you may want to consider the following:
- Create a backup on the cloud.
- Create a backup on a flash drive or external hard drive.
- Create a local backup on your PC.
With this system, losing your data is improbable. Without it, a flash drive backup alone is worthless if you lose the drive, and a cloud backup alone doesn’t mean much if, for some crazy reason, the cloud ceases to exist or your data magically goes missing.
So, how can you make the 3-2-1 method a reality? We’re glad you asked.
Note: All pricing listed is at the time of writing this article (December 2021).
#1 - Create a Cloud Backup
Google Drive and its Backup and Sync service may do the trick when considering a cloud backup. Google charges $10 per month for 1 TB storage.
If you’re not a Google fan, Dropbox offers a service for $8.25 per month per TB, and there are many other trustworthy players in the space.
If you’re worried about your data being compromised on the cloud, it’s essential to know that leading cloud services encrypt your files on your end — this means the provider doesn’t have the key to decrypt them.
Backing up your information on the cloud is relatively easy. Plus, you can set up periodic backups to ensure your data is constantly captured and saved.
#2 - Create a Backup on a Flash Drive or External Hard Drive
Luckily, there are some fantastic flash drives on the market. Because they are pretty small, it never hurts to have multiple drives on hand.
When shopping for a flash drive, make sure that it’s compatible with your PC and has enough storage space. Usually, 256 GB or 512 GB is enough for creating a computer backup. If you need more space, there is the option of an external hard drive that can offer up to 1 TB of storage space or more.
To create a backup on your flash drive or external drive, insert it into the USB port on your computer and allow it to install. Once the drive installs, click “Start,” “All Programs,” “Accessories,” “System Tools,” and then “Backup.” A backup wizard will begin and provide instructions for you to follow. If for some reason, the wizard doesn’t work, numerous video tutorials on YouTube can lead you to a full backup. If there are individual files or folders you specifically want to save, you can typically do so with a simple drag and drop.
#3 - Create a Backup on Your Computer
Finally, Market Screener recommends that you create a backup on your PC. The process is pretty straightforward. The secret is understanding which version of Windows you have and following its backup instructions. Click here for both Windows 11 and 10.
As you work to back up your PC regularly, it’s also vital that your Windows drives are up-to-date. Doing so will keep your device in good operating condition and even save it from potentially expensive issues down the road. Think of your backups and driver updates as significant as changing the oil in your car in the new year. For your computer to run flawlessly, you have to give it some love and care.
And remember, while Solve iQ software does not back up system files it can keep your computer running safer and more efficiently. Hello Possible.