On The Importance of Backing Up Your Data - I paid dearly for not doing so
Thread poster: Csaba Ban

Csaba Ban  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:50
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Aug 11, 2004

Dear All,

Whether you are buried in work or whiling away at a sandy beach, make sure you you always back up your work, your files - essentially, your livelihood. Backing up means at a different storage media.

I have always been procrastinating this issue and now I had to pay very dearly for this lesson.

A few days ago my desktop PC crashed, with a strange smelling smoke coming from the back side. (a pain in the back side...)

When I took it to service, I was told that originally it was only the ventillator that went wrong, but this lead to an enourmous heat building up, corrupting the power supply unit, and hence, several hardware components, including my hard drive.

Four years of work, translation memories, terminology databases, client data, all email correspondence complete with attachments, numeruous personal files, about 2,000 digitial photos, not to mention a host of software applications - all gone.

Luckily enough, there is a professional data recovery service in Budapest (www.kurt.hu) who seem to be able to recover my data from the physically damaged hard drive - but it costs me a fortune (about a 1000 euros).

After a mini heart-attack and a flood of perspiration, I suddenly had to weigh in the price of data. IS it really worth it?

Then I realized that even at this cost, it pays off to use this data recovery service.

But then again, if I had replaced the ventillator last week, it would have cost me 5 to 10 euros. Or I could have easily kept a backup CD or additional hard drive with my most important files...

I am just telling you about my story to save YOU a similar mini heart-attack and lots of money...

take care,

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Judy Rojas  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:50
Spanish to English
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Murphy's Law Aug 11, 2004

After suffering a similar incident several years ago, we installed Norton's Ghost, which makes an exact copy of the drive on to a separate drive. We run Ghost twice a day (it only takes about 5 minutes). Once a week, I dump everything on to a DVD, and I installed two servers, one is mirrowed instantly, so if one server fails, the other kick over immediately.

A lot of effort to protect your data, but it's worth every penny.


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Local time: 14:50
English to French
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virtual back-up Aug 11, 2004

Ricardo Martinez de la Torre wrote:

After suffering a similar incident several years ago, we installed Norton's Ghost, which makes an exact copy of the drive on to a separate drive.

Is there such a possibility to do so on a virtuel place, somewhere on the net ?

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Giovanni Guarnieri MITI, MIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:50
Member (2004)
English to Italian
external hard drive Aug 11, 2004

I have installed an external hard drive (120 G) and I back up all my essential data to it every hour.... yes, every hour. I know of colleagues who back up their data whenever a change is detected...


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Lucinda  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:50
Member (2002)
Dutch to English
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Thank you, Csaba! Aug 11, 2004

First, I am very sorry about what happened to you. This is indeed mini-coronary time.

Second, thank you for jolting me awake. For a couple of days now I have been happily translating away and have not made a back up for a large document I am working on. I am formatting a CD-Rom as we speak to save the data on.


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Jabberwock  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:50
Member (2004)
English to Polish
Consider mirroring Aug 12, 2004

In the past this type of backup was reserved only for network servers, but now it is cheaper and you can use it at home.

If you plan to replace your motherboard, go for a one with a RAID controller. Then you connect two identical hard disks, and they always mirror each other. That is, if one fails, the other has all the data. Of course, this might not save data from a fire inside the case, but even then the recovery would be easier (as both disk would not be burned in the same spots). That is why you should also make CD (DVD) copies daily.

Before you pay so much for the service, check out software which does the same (e.g. Ontrack, Norton). Some programs even have demo versions.

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xxxHirschmann  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:50
English to German
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Develop a backup strategy! Aug 13, 2004

Well, knowing that what Csaba Ban described may happen, I have already heavily invested in backup hardware as long as 16 years ago when I bought a 60-MByte tape streamer for the equivalent of EUR 1800.

Today, I have two internal hard-disk drives, and an external one with USB 2.0 and FireWire interface.

I use a FreeWare piece, called SyncBack, to automatically backup the contents of my entire D: partition (where I store just all my data, i.e., everything except the operating system and installed application software) to my second internal hard-disk drive every five minutes in the background.

To avoid losing data if I accidentally delete a file, I additionally back up the same data to my second internal hard-disk drive (G:), using Dantz's backup software Retrospect in the incremental mode where new and modified files are appended to the backup set, leaving files deleted from the source partition (drive D:) in the backup set.

At least every week, I use a software named R-Drive Image to backup my entire C: partition as a file on my second internal hard-disk drive. Subsequently, the entire contents of my second internal hard-disk drive is copied to my external hard-disk drive (H:), using the smart-copy function (only new and modified files are copied) of SyncBack.

About every month, I burn a DVD-RW with the contents of my second internal hard-disk drive and carry it to my bank to put it into my safe-deposit box. This backup strategy makes me confident not to lose valuable data (passwords, financial records, TMs, etc., and a functional operating systems with installed application software, ready to go).

[Edited at 2004-08-13 21:20]

[Edited at 2004-08-13 21:21]

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