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Best Methods of Storing Your Backups

written by: Joli Ballew•edited by: Michele McDonough•updated: 8/13/2009

It’s important to store your backups away from your PC or Laptop. The thing that destroys your PC (fire, flood) can well destroy your backups, too.

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    Store Backups Safely

    (This is part V of the series Windows XP Backup Utility – Everything You Need to Know)

    A spilled soda that lands on your computer and then spills over onto your backup device will destroy both, so placing your external hard drive (with your backups on it) on top of your tower doesn’t make much sense. In the same vein, a lightning strike that gets by your surge protector will likely destroy anything that’s plugged into it, so even having the backup device in the same room can offer up problems as well.

    Consider creating a backup on an external drive and then burning that file to a DVD once a month or so. Then you can store the DVD in another room, in a safe deposit box, or at another location for safekeeping. You might also back up to an external drive, and then unplug and remove it to protect it from power surges, viruses, spilled coffee, or other catastrophes. Data stored on computers has certainly become that valuable; pictures, videos, and some data simply can’t be replaced or re-created.

    Tip: Treat your backups as you would your most precious photos or videos. You want to keep them in a safe place where flood, fire, or theft won’t be a threat.

    You can also store your backups on an Internet server. Many options are free. For instance, you can email small backups to yourself, using a Hotmail or Yahoo! account. The information will remain on Internet servers until you delete it.

    Additionally, Gmail storage is available. With a Gmail account you can access Google’s "Infinity+1" storage plan. Standard and Education Edition storage (now at 2GB) allows you to store up to 2GB of data online, and Premier Edition users get a whopping 25 GB (up from 10 GB). With that you can store almost all of your backups online, and never have to worry again about the security and safety of your backups.

    Of course, you can store photos on Facebook, My Spaces, and similar social networking web sites, or use a free service like BuddyBackup. Services like the latter offer a free place to store your data, although you may have to endure ads or popups for the privilege.

    If you’re interested in an online backup service that’s been around for a while and is trusted, try www.xdrive.com. With it you can:

    • Back up all of your files -- your documents, music, photos and more -- automatically.
    • Conveniently access all your files from anywhere.
    • Easily share permissible files with friends and family.
    • Get 5GB of free online storage!

Windows XP Backup Utility – Everything You Need to Know

It's important to back up data regularly, and, you need a good backup strategy. In this series of articles, you’ll learn all about backing up data:using XP's Backup utility, backing up automatically, nd restoring when a crash occurs. You’ll also learn what to back up, how often, and more.
  1. Perform Backups with XP's Backup Utility
  2. Creating a Simple or Thorough Backup in Windows XP
  3. Different Types of Backup in Windows XP
  4. Backup Recommendations for the Home User
  5. Best Methods of Storing Your Backups
  6. Scheduling a Backup Using the Backup Utility
  7. Restore to a Backup Using the Windows XP Restore Utility
  8. Copy to a CD as a Backup Option