Why One Backup Copy Isn’t Enough

You’re ready to backup. You’ve purchased your shiny new external hard drive and are ready to finally get your files under control. Great! You’ve copied your photos, music, videos and documents onto it for safe-keeping. Finally, you can delete some older files from your hard drive and get back some much-needed space on your laptop. Your laptop’s hard drive has been getting pretty full recently so you’re glad you’ve finally gotten around to this! Now you can relax.

Not so fast. A couple of months later, you come home from work to hear a strange clicking noise from next to your computer. Oh no! It appears your new external backup drive has failed! The manufacturer or store may replace the drive for you under warranty, but you’re on your own with the costs of data recovery – and you didn’t have your data anywhere else!

Unfortunately, this is a common scenario. People regularly send me their only backup drive for recovery. If your important files are only stored on one drive, you may have the false security of knowing you’re covered. Unfortunately, if the data isn’t located anywhere else and your only copy is on a drive that fails, you haven’t got a backup!

What You Can Do About It

You can read about how to avoid data loss by getting a backup in place in our short article, Getting Started with Backups. The simple rule of thumb is this: try to keep two or more copies of your data in two or more physical locations. Check out the article for ideas on where and how to do this – don’t put it off!