I wrote an article last week without realising exactly how many customers we had with Avast anti-virus; however it has been great to catch up again with our more regular customers and it surely keeps my techs on their toes! For regular readers looking for a conclusion to the backup article that I started 3 weeks ago, I thank you for your patience and hope to shed more light on this subject here.
Besides cloud-based storage, the best style of backup system that the average home user can utilise is the time proven external backup drive. These are not infallible, however they offer a good mix of capacity, convenience and price which is testament to their popularity. In terms of reliability they are most definitely a step ahead of USB thumb drives.
While mentioning thumb drives – from what we have seen, their rapid decline in price appears to have been paralleled with a decline in quality. We have seen a number of these devices from so called reputable brands failing with alarming regularity. These devices should not be trusted for any longer-term storage of important files but rather just used for what they were originally designed for – a simple, universal way of transferring files from one PC device to another.
When you purchase an external USB drive you often get given some form of backup software with it – free of charge. These software titles vary from manufacturer to manufacturer however the age old saying about getting what you pay for tends to ring true. I have seen customers labour over setting up these backup devices with their shipped software and I have seen some very disappointing outcomes from this action.
We must keep in mind that software has zero intelligence. Software can have programming logic and can do lots of things – but thinking or having intelligence is not one of them. Ask the latest smart phone to fetch a stick – nope, no result will prevail. Ask a pooch with even dubious intelligence and you will often get a result! The same can be said of backup software – it has no clue what files or folders are important to you.
Backup software manufacturers usually try to get around this by simply getting their software to backup your entire computer – but as you will see, this is still far from helpful for the average user. A backup of your entire computer can take hours and be out of date as soon as a Windows update occurs. This style of backup can also be a nightmare to navigate through if you just need to recover a single file that you deleted by mistake.
We saw these shortfalls near 2 decades ago, so I had a programmer develop backup software to my own specifications. When we install this software ourselves, we configure it uniquely for each customer and this is when we can give it logic that suits that individual. Our KS one touch backup will focus on only the files and folders that are important to you.
It compares the files that are on your PC to the ones that are already on the backup drive and only needs to transfer any new files or any file modifications each time it is run. For this reason you can run the backup software once a week and it will take around 10 to 15 seconds. You then place the backup drive in a secure place for the next week.
Future Byte Me topics can be emailed to [email protected] and Bruce is contactable at Kerr Solutions, 205 Musgrave Street or on 07 49 222 400.
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