Speaking of files . . .
Backup is complicated to do well. It needs to be regular, preferably automagical, probably in multiple versions, and really, one of those versions should be offsite. But who has the time to arrange all that? Apple’s Time Machine takes care of the regular and automagical parts, but usually the Time Machine saves to an external hard drive, or perhaps to a drive attached to your wireless router (a la Time Capsule).
As broadband has become more widely available and reliable, and as the cost of storage has dropped, several companies have started providing secure, over-the-internet, automatic backup. I use a service called Backblaze, which is available for Mac and PC. It runs in the background, backs up my entire hard drive (plus the external drive where I keep my iTunes files), proceeding incrementally yet keeping 4 weeks of different versions of a particular file. You can access your files from any computer with a web browser. It’s a beautiful thing.
(Some people compare it to Dropbox, a service so awesome it will get a separate post at some point. Dropbox syncs a folder between multiple computers and a web server, so that you can access the same files anywhere. It also provides versioning–and now it has an iPhone interface! And, seriously, you should be using Dropbox. But the services have different emphases: use Dropbox so you’re not always e-mailing files to yourself or carrying flash drives. Use Backblaze to back up everything.)
Backblaze is pretty cheap, too, for the peace of mind: $5/month, or $50/year. And, until August 21, you get 15% off your first order. Just use the code: backtoschool
(Note: I use Backblaze as a paying customer. They didn’t give me any promotional considerations.)
How do you handle backup? Have a better service? Let us know in comments.
[from flickr user playerx, per a creative commons license]