Your on-line business cannot afford a feeling like this in your stomach
Have you ever experienced that terrible feeling in the pit of your stomach? You know the one. The one you hope is just a mistake. Nah, that couldn’t really be happening to me. This only happens to the other guy. Not me.
Well it is happening to you. You just got a Windows blue screen. No, this is not your typical Application Error blue screen. This blue screen makes reference to “unable to find boot sector" or “failure writing to default drive" or some other ominous message then makes your body shutter, because you just lost your hard drive.
If you are like most people, you have little to no backup available. If you run an on-line business, this can be the “kiss of death" or at least a major financial set back.
This scenario happened to me recently. Well almost. I was lucky because my hard drive failed over a 2-day period so I was able to frantically start backing up data before the drive completely failed. I was sweating bullets before I got done. I did manage to recover about 85% of my data before the drive completely died.
Well, once I got a replacement drive in place, I vowed to not get in that situation again. I put a very simple (and cheap) backup process in place, which I recommend you do to – especially if you rely on your computer for income.
First get an external USB hard drive that is at least as large as your computer’s hard drive. Preferably one that is 2 to 3 times larger than your computer’s hard drive. Depending on the size, they can run from about $75 to $300. If you watch the ads for your local computer stores you can find some great deals especially when a rebate is involved.
Next you need a simple backup up tool. I use a very cheap program called Ez-Back-It Up. I picked this program for several reasons: It was cheap, it would backup just changes, it didn’t use a proprietary format (Windows Explorer could access the backed up files), it was easily configurable, and it had a built in scheduler. What more would I need?
So I hooked the external drive to my computer, installed the backup software, and did a little configuration. Since I have most of my programs save data in the My Documents folder I only had to select a couple data directories to backup (My Documents, Favorites, and Outlook). I scheduled it to run every night at 4 AM and I now have regular backups. The most I can lose now is a day’s worth of data. If I need to, I could have the backup run several times a day and even cut this window down.
So in just a few minutes, I’ve created a system that will pretty much prevent that ugly feeling out of my stomach.
Gary R. Ferguson is a writer, publisher, and on-line marketer who publishes the Only One Page Newsletter available at http://www.onlyonepage.com and also the recently released ebook Hypnotic Auctions at http://www.hypnoticauctions.com