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Just in case, just on the slim chance a disaster strikes, you need to be prepared. I'm not talking about having duct tape and plastic wrap or 10 gallons of water though; I'm talking about having backups, product IDs, and backups of e-mail and cookies.
To prepare for a disaster, at least regarding your computer, applications, data, and hardware, consider the following:
- Collect and organize your CDs and DVDs and purchase a CD/DVD notebook. Use a permanent marker to copy product IDs from the CD cases onto their individual disks.
- To find product IDs that you don't have boxes for, open the program on your PC, choose Help, and select About This . You'll almost always see the Product ID there. Create a backup copy or any programs you downloaded from the Internet. Store these on a CD or DVD, or external drive. Include product ID codes and the web site name. Use Windows Backup and Restore tools to create a backup of personal data. Remember to include pictures, music, videos, e-mail, documents, TV shows, compressed files, and any additional files and folder. [See Image 1] Configure a backup program to run weekly, to backup data that has been added or edited. Move these backups to a safe place monthly, or, store them online. Create a backup disk of iTunes music (or other music service or media). Consider storing important data to an online source, such as a web site or ISP storage area. Consider purchasing a complete PC backup application. One is included with Windows Vista Ultimate. A complete backup can be used to restore your entire system quickly. Store the CDs, DVDs, and backups away from your home or office. If there's a fire, those backups will be destroyed along with everything else. Keep your tower off the floor (where a broken water heater could destroy it), away from where pets congregate, and away from anyplace coffee or cigarette smoke could get into it.