A 'good enough' backup system

Cheap and cheerful, but it'll keep your data safe.

By Joseph Geddes, 1 November, 2019


HP Renew Laptop in silver keyboard

Storage has never been cheaper, so don't leave yourself without a backup.

The data recovery industry is set to reach $4.1 billion revenue by 2024. This is a highly specialised field, with talented people and innovative companies whom we all hope to never deal with.

Unfortunately, accidents happen and data does get lost. It might be precious family photos or months of work. Either way this is a very stressful and often costly event that you’d do well to avoid.

By taking regular backups you can keep yourself safe from the chance of data loss.

Where do I backup to?

If you’re looking to protect the data on one PC or Laptop, grab an external hard drive.

Serious about backing up all your devices? Get a NAS. These are basically hard drives you can read and write to over your network, that might mean Wi-Fi or ethernet depending on your setup.

We can recommend Synology if you’re looking for a NAS. They have a solution for every budget and are nice and simple to set up.

How do I backup?

You’re going to need some software to do the backing up for you, as copying your Documents folder just isn’t good enough for a disaster scenario.

Veeam have a brilliant free version of their backup software for Windows. It does exactly what it says and can let you know via e-mail when something isn’t right.

Veeam backup agent for Windows can be setup to automatically backup when your external hard drive is plugged in, or run on a schedule to your NAS.

How can we improve?

So by now we’ve got a local copy of all our data, we can throw our PC down the stairs and not lose a byte. What about those floods this year though? Hear about the break-in last week? If your backup copy gets damaged at the same time as your PC does, that’s not a good time.

Remember how storage has never been cheaper? That goes for cloud storage too. At the time of writing, Google offer a 100GB plan for £16 per year or a 2TB for £8 per month. Your Synology NAS can sync all those backups to Google’s servers in the background without you lifting a finger.

For the external hard drive guys, get a second one and give it to someone you trust. Veeam can even encrypt your backups so a password is required to get your data in the event of loss.

This won’t be as up to date as the NAS + Sync, but losing a week’s work is better than a lifetime’s.

Need more advice?

We’ve tried to keep things simple, but not everyone is comfortable with installing a program or managing their own NAS. We’re more than happy to help get your backups in order and keep your data safe.

Contact the office to find out more about backups - 01939 550040