T Nation

Need Computer Help

When it comes to computers. I am fucking illiterate. I was wondering what I would need to purchase in order to back up my music files and pictures on my computer?

Some type of chip or a USB portable thing?
And if you have any ideas what the price ranges are.
I got about 1000 songs and a couple hundred digital camera pictures.
Appreciate it.

Easy

Maxtor One Touch III:

Comes with software to perform a backup of your data.

I suggest an external hard drive. Simple setup (plug it in and you should be good), they’re fast enough for backups and playing music, etc…, off of, and they’re fairly cheap now.

$114 - 250GB:

$129 - 320GB:

$199 - 500GB:

You have two options when you’re looking at data that size.

  1. External Hard Drive (which can get a virus and can break down just as easily!)

  2. The much cheaper option of buying 5-10 DVD-RW disc (re-writable DVD’s) and updating them every 6 months or so. I have 8000 mp3’s on my computer and a whackload of documents.
    This is of course assuming you have a DVD writer drive on your computer and software like Nero or Sonic’s Record Now (which I use).

I store them offsite (not at home) just in case there was a fire and my place burned down I’d not lose all that data (same thing you should do for important insurance and other documents; or at least makes copies to store offsite).

That is not really a lot of data. I bet most of would fit onto 1 DVD. All of it would fit on 2. A DVD is much more reliable and will last a much longer time. Most hard drives are only guaranteed for 4-5 years. You can pick up USB based DVD writers.

If it’s for backup purposes, a DVD burner might be more appropriate.

It will allow you to make multiple copies and to keep some of them offsite. Personally, I keep a few DVDs of pictures and financial data in a safe deposit box at my bank. You could also keep a copy at work or at your parent’s house.

Most other solutions proposed will give you a second copy, but if your house burns down, both copies will likely be destroyed. Music can usually be replaced, but family and baby pictures are gone forever.

[quote]Pemdas wrote:
That is not really a lot of data. I bet most of would fit onto 1 DVD. All of it would fit on 2. A DVD is much more reliable and will last a much longer time. Most hard drives are only guaranteed for 4-5 years. You can pick up USB based DVD writers. [/quote]

The life span of a backup external HD is a lot longer than that of a DVD. However, he doesn’t have much data so a DVD would probably do…

Backups on DVD are just not something i’m keen on, so I didn’t even think of suggesting it. Good idea.

[quote]JokerFMJ wrote:
The life span of a backup external HD is a lot longer than that of a DVD. However, he doesn’t have much data so a DVD would probably do…[/quote]

Don’t buy the cheapest brand you can find, get something like TDK, Kodak or Sony. I can still read my first DVDs just fine, and like I said previously, multiple copies are your friend.

Personally, all the people I know who’ve lost data did so when a hard disk went bad.

You can also take an external HDD with you (bring it off site); but I don’t know anyone who does that. In case of theft, fire or flood, you run the risk of losing both copies.

If the data is not too large, you could probably get a cheap web site host and send your files there. Setup a nightly script that rsyncs your local files and you’re always up to date. Many hosts now offer 10-20 GB of storage for what amounts to peanuts. You can also access your data from anywhere on the net. Of course, if you go that route, encryption is your friend.

Thanks guys, appreciate the responses. Ill take a look at all those mentioned options.