Backup Questions

Dear Computer Lady,

I have never backed up my computer; what method do you recommend on how to do this? And once done, what is a good way (If hard drive crashes) to reinstate what has been backed up?

Also, how often do you recommend backing up ones hard drive?

Thanks for all you do to help us. Jean

Dear Jean,

The best method for you to use to backup your computer will depend on what you use your computer for, and what you have on it for data.

If you use your computer only for reading email and web browsing, and perhaps playing games, you need a good recovery image, but if you are not adding pictures and documents to your computer there is no need for an ongoing backup program. You might want to create a new image once a year to keep it updated.

If you use your computer to store data like pictures, documents, recipes, patterns, knitting directions, music, etc. you will need an ongoing backup routine.

I suggest a good backup program like Acronis True Image, and an external hard drive that you plug in to do your backup, then remove it from your computer when the backup is finished so that it is safe from ransomware.

Acronis can be set up to do the recovery image. It can also be setup to do the ongoing backup on a regular schedule. If you add new files every week, then backup weekly. If you only add them occasionally, set your backup to once a month.

When you need to access the files on your backup, you just use the Acronis software. Just select the backup that contains your files, click “recover files”, and follow the prompts to copy the files back to your computer.

Business owners need to have a bit more in place, I would be happy to chat with you about your needs if you are running a business and need a robust backup solution.



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Elizabeth Boston is a Web designer, Social Media Consultant and managing editor of, “Ask The Computer Lady”.
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