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  • Writer's pictureBurton Kelso, Tech Expert

How to Automatically Backup Your Data on Your Devices

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March 31st is World Backup Day. The purpose of this day is to remind you of how important it is to back up your data on your computers, smartphones, and tablets. Computers and devices fail all of the time and your data is more valuable than your device! Just think how you would feel if you lost the $1,000 in music and movies you have on your device, and the digital video of your wedding, your little boy or girl's first step. You can get a new computer or phone, but try replacing those important files: You can't! So what do you do? How do you make sure you never lose the information that is important to you? You back them up! Having a backup strategy means that you set up processes that will automatically back up your data.

There are several ways to back up your information. You could use a flash drive or an external hard drive or save it to the cloud. If you're using a Windows computer or an iMac, the external hard drive will work great. However, if you're a mobile device user, what are the chances you're going to pull out your USB flash drive or external drive and plug it in? If you want to make sure your information is always backed up, consider using the following cloud services to have a second set of your files. Want to get started? Here are some ways that will automatically back up your devices.

1. Carbonite. One of the best backup programs on the planet. Starting at $83 a year, you get unlimited storage for your Windows and Macintosh computers. Once installed, Carbonite runs quietly in the background to back up your files to the Carbonite servers. The best part is it's automatic and doesn't interfere with your normal computer use.

2. Google Backup and Google Photos. Google offers a free solution that allows you to back up, upload, and store files from any folder on your computer, camera, and SD cards in the cloud. The best part you can access your information from any phone, tablet, or computer using Google Drive, and your photos and videos in Google Photos. Information updated to Google Drive and Google Photos is limited to 15 Gigabytes, with an option to buy more.

3. Cloud Storage Tools like OneDrive, One Drive, and Amazon work great for Automatic backup. Although these tools as well as Google Backup and Google Photos are only intended to allow you to have access to your files anywhere you go, it's a good idea to install these programs to your Windows or Macintosh computer to ensure you have another copy of your file in an offsite location.

4. Use iCloud and Google Drive To Backup Tablets and Phones. Backing up an iOS device, such as an iPhone or iPad s fairly easy. iPhone users need to enable iCloud Backup on their devices to get automatic backup. You only get 5 Gigabytes of free online storage with iCloud. If you get messages saying your iCloud storage is full, just pay for the extra storage. You won't regret it. Android devices can take advantage of Google sync, a service that is built into all Android phones and tablets. Google Sync allows you to back up your Apps, Calendar, Chrome, Contacts, Docs, and pretty much anything on your phone. Both iCloud Backup and Google Sync have to be enabled. On both devices, just go to settings and turn on backup If you ever have an issue with your android and apple device, you can restore the contents from your backup rather than losing it.

5. TimeMachine and Windows File History Are Great Backup Tools. If you prefer to keep your information locally on an external hard drive rather than storing it on the cloud, Macintosh users can turn on TimeMachine which automatically backs up your information every hour and Windows users can turn on File History which uses the same hourly schedule to automatically backup files. Any external hard drive will work with both of these programs, but I recommend Western Digital drives for dependable storage.

NEVER rely on manually backing up your data, because it will never get done. Over the years, I've seen too many people lose precious information because they intended to back up their devices, but never got around to it.

Hopefully, this post has given you the information you need about the dangers of not setting the backup of your devices to be automatic. Regardless of what type of device you have, it is very important to save your data to other locations. Tablets and phones get lost, damaged, or stolen all the time, and all computers are susceptible to failure. This World Backup Day, take the time to set up an automatic backup solution. Having a backup is a great way to insure that even if the physical device gets lost, the data will still be available elsewhere! If you need further assistance, please reach out to me with any questions you might have. I am always happy to help!

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