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A Lesson in Backups


I have always lectured, nagged and pushed my family, friends and client to make sure that they backup their computer on at least a weekly basis. In fact as part of my job as a consultant I setup and perform backups for multiple clients. But do I practice what I preach? No – not as well as I should.

I try to be good about manually backing up my computer and have had selecting an online backup solution on my to-do list for quite some time. My excuses for not backing up are the same I hear from clients all the time – no time, too much work, not enough drive space – the list goes on and on.

Then it happened. My laptop was stolen. Someone (and I am being a lady here) climbed in an open window in the middle of the night and snatched my laptop off of my coffee table. I found it missing when I came out in the early morning and it was a devastating feeling – second to the realization a stranger was in my apartment while I was sleeping in the next room.

After the dust settled and I wrapped my mind around what happened (actually still trying to come to terms with it) my next thought was – oh crap! I couldn’t remember the last time I spent the time backing up my computer and I went into another tailspin.

What had I lost? When did I backup last? Was there any confidential information? Should I change my passwords? Yeah, it was a total meltdown that was followed by a major guilt trip – why haven’t I backed up? Why didn’t I close the windows? That noise I heard in the middle of the night – was that the thief? It was a lot to process.

After calming down and thinking through what I had on my laptop I am fortunate that a large percentage of my data has been posted online or emailed so I can re-create that data. I do have several backups that cover my older data but I still lost a lot of data including business records, tax documents, music and photos.

It will be some time before I realize the extent of the loss. I am currently changing all my passwords (to be safe) while looking for a new laptop and when I start to rebuild my new machine I am sure I will think of more data that I am missing. All I can do now is look forward and hope that I have not lost anything major (cross fingers I never get audited).

Now is the lesson learned – backup! No excuses! I have started looking into online backup solutions that will automatically backup my machine and will report back on my findings. Until then backup!


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Content copyright © 2014 by Allison Nunn. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Allison Nunn. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Allison Nunn for details.

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