Backing up your data is a very important task that is often overlooked or ignored. Many people use the excuse that they don’t have the time or knowledge needed to properly backup their files while it is actually quite easy and not very time consuming to backup files. Free backup software and online storage makes backing up almost effortless.
If you use Norton 360 as your security and virus protections software then you have backup functionality and online storage as part of the package. Below is the information for configuring and using the Norton backup utility.
- Select Start | Programs
- Click on Norton then Norton 360
Once Norton is opened hover over the Backup section and select Manage Backup Sets. There are several settings that need to be configured before using the backup utility these include:
- What – the files to be backed up.
- Where – the backup location (online, local drive or external device).
- When – when the backup should occur (automatic or manual).
From within the Manage Backup Sets screen all of these settings can be configured and managed. Listed below is a detailed description of each setting.
The “what” are the files that will be included in the backup. To select the files click on What in the menu bar which will bring up the file selection screen. The file selection screen is divided into two sections which include Backup Sources and File Types. The Backup Sources are the drives on your system and the File Types are the files to be included in the backup.
By default the My Documents folder is selected and the standard file types are selected including pictures, files, financial files, office documents, contacts, Internet favorites and other file types. Each one of these file types can be configured to include or exclude certain file types from the backup. In addition, you can also exclude or include addition folders.
The “where” is the location where the backed up files will be stored. The locations can include local drives, attached drives or online storage. (Norton 360 comes with 2GB of online storage and additional storage can be added if needed).
Storing your backup files online is the safest location for your files. The best backup is always stored in a separate location from your computer or home and online storage makes keeping a backup off-site easy and convenient.
If you are not comfortable backing up your files online the next best solution is to back up to an external drive that you store at a different location after the backup is complete.
Note: Online storage not only provides the benefit of storing your files at a different location but it also allows for the most hands-free backup operation since you don’t have to attach a hard drive or burn to a DVD/CD.
The “when” is backup schedule. It is strongly recommended that a schedule is setup so backups occur automatically. The backup can be set to run automatically when you are not using your computer or you can create a schedule to have the backup occur at a certain date and time.
Note: The automatic backup can only occur when your computer is on.
All done! After configuring these settings you should have a backup schedule and location all set to automatically backup your files – now no excuses for not backing up your computer!