Putting off a decision on backup?

Doing nothing is really risky and pointless.

The tech is awesome the cost is affordable and getting caught is a really bad experience. There is no better time than now to get your affairs in order.

We live in a world where the risk of losing your important files, resources and reputation is no longer a topic for our employers to worry about. The risk has left the office and is now invading our homes and professional lives.

As I begin to write this article I am deliberately avoiding the more sensationalist topics about this risk. There is plenty of information on line today you can read and get your fill if needed of just how bad it can be if you do nothing.

In this article I intend to speak about practical steps that you really should take now. These steps will protect you and your communities from losing digital assets.

I am referring to the assets you assume will last forever. Assets you intend to pull out and share with friends family and grandchildren in the future. Perhaps you have files and information you use for your business, professional and community purposes, and overlooked that these won't be replaceable if ever lost.

For example, these assets may include photo's, camcorder footage, scans of invoices, certificate, passports. They could be databases, presentations, forms, procedures and more. The point is some if these you may never have the time, opportunity or will to recreate if you loose them. Even movie and photo collections, losing these will at best cost you time to recreate, at worst the subject matter, person or holiday moment will never come again. I for one don't want to be explaining to grandchildren why photos of their childhood are gone.

So now I have your attention, let's be pragmatic about what we should protect ourselves against. It helps to make a list of requirements, and this is usually birthed from a list of risks.

The risk list is simple enough to understand, some examples are:

  • Virus including malware, PC virus and that nasty ransom-ware that has resurfaced in force recently.
  • Failure of any one computer under your control comes in many forms, disk drive, memory or circuits.
  • Failure if operating system, updates, firmware changes, upgrades
  • Failure of new or old programs, compatibility issues
  • Then the old favourites of power failure, lighting, water, heat, fire, theft just to name a few.

In short too many risks to list, the point is you need a plan.

WAIT WAIT, before you tune out or start skipping or not reading this article carefully, I fear I should share a quote from a friend of mine.

A lovely Italian lady lives in Sutherland, who lost a bunch of files recently. Photo's, memories, files for work and interests, all were important to her when her notebook (of many years) failed and had to be reformatted.

She lost everything.

I hope I can do her justice, however in my defense I don't speak Italian, but it went something like this.

A4$!K8&HG$%^~Y&5$ (repeated several times for effect I beleive)

Surprisingly she has a good set of lungs which appears to of resulted in a series of shock waves.

The CSIRO, just 5 Km from her home was in lock down for the rest of the day.

CloudBox  - Choosing the right NAS for your home or office network

OK just joking, not as funny now I read what I have just written, but her experience was genuine and I am sure we have all felt that anger and frustration before.

Your plan needs to:

  • Include all possible points of failure
  • Create multiple redundancies (i.e. backups of backups, at least two levels ideally three)
  • Backup your information to more than one location
  • At least one backup of important stuff at another location (In cloud, at a friend, colleague or family member's location)
  • Must be automated (Does not rely on a person to do the task, because (Murphy's Law) someone will stuff up at the worst possible time
  • Must be easy to manage and monitor (KISS)
  • Must be capable to alerting you my email, message or some form of notification when a part of the automated backup fails partially or fully
  • Must have a means for you to login and rectify any problems from remote location (it's uncanny that problems seem to appear when I am travelling).

So I guess your saying,

aghh I have not got time for this!

Well you're in luck because we have a kick starter guide to fast track you through!

Step 1: Make a list of requirements

This is absolutely the simplest and safest place to start. Most people will start with a list of risks, but since your thinking about making an investment that will be with you for many years, why not make that investment do more than just protect!

Buying a NAS today should be fun, because the devices will perform a lot more than just backup.

By this I mean a decent NAS capable of providing a solid backup for the home or office, will these date give you a lot of other nice things that you probably were not expecting. So your list of requirements can and should include a list of additional functions and nice to have features.

Modern smartNAS devices are very clever and can do a lot more than backup, networking and remote access. Plus most of the better products have these features built in at no extra cost.

A quick way to examine your requirements if the smikbox Quick Quiz and requirements tutorial. Just by going through this quiz you will learn more about what you need to be considering.

Home / Office Requirements Tutorial

To complete this tutorial, click on the accordions below and the tutorial in that section will be shown.

This configurator has 3 sections:

  • Section 1 - Personal usage
  • Section 2 - Business usage
  • Section 3 - Support

You should complete Sections 2 and 3. If you're intending to use smikBox for business or professional purposes please also complete Section 2.

Sections 1 and 2 have an introductory video at the top. Please watch the introductory video before answering questions.

When you have completed the questions enter your email in the place provided, and make sure to use the same email you will use when placing the order. Your configuration report will be sent to the email provided.

If you complete this questionnaire more than once, the last submission is recorded as your stated requirements.

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