backups

My laptop was stolen, what do I do?

Episode 1531

Jeff from Costa Mesa, CA

Jeff is worried about whether his personal data has been compromised after his Mac was stolen. Apple says not to worry about it. Leo says that if he turned on FileVault, then he'll be OK. If he didn't, then they can hack into his Find My iMac account to find out where he lives. Leo recommends clearing out his FindMyiMac searches and block anyone who may have gotten into it. More likely, they just tried to sell it or pawned it. Apple may be able to remote wipe or brick it. But he shouldn't try and go get it. That would be dangerous. He should just turn over the data to the police.

How can I undo renaming multiple files?

Computer monitor, keyboard, and mouse

Episode 1459

Brian from Los Angeles, CA

Brian tried to rename a file and ended up renaming hundreds of them. How can he undo that? Leo says it's a common issue, and if he accidentally hit an asterisk while typing (which is on the 8 key), it could rename everything pretty easily. The good news is that it assigned a number to each duplicate name, so it doesn't overwrite the file. Brian just needs to figure out which file is which. There's an easy fix. Fortunately, Brian uses Carbonite, so he can just restore his backup.

(Disclaimer: Carbonite is a sponsor.)

Why isn't Time Machine backing up my data?

Super Duper

Episode 1406

Brian from Orange County, CA

Brian is a wedding videographer and he's noticed that Time Machine hasn't been backing up his footage for about a year. Leo says that the first thing Brian should do is stop using Apple's Time Machine. It's terrible and everyone knows it. Leo says that Brian should rethink his strategy because he's a professional and It's even more important that he doesn't lose data. Leo advises reading Peter Krogh's DAM Book. He can also go to DPBestflow.org. He should look under resources.

How can I sync my backup files?

Episode 1337

Beth from Studio City, CA

Beth bought Microsoft OneDrive and she backs up her data files on it. But she has two versions of it. Leo says one may be the backup of her tablet files. If they're supposed to be the same, she'll need to make sure they are synced before she deletes one. Dropbox may be a better option because it would tell her which drive is the backup drive. Leo also recommends backing it up locally and then she can delete one.

Why is my 1TB drive saying it's almost full, even though I don't have much on it?

Episode 1080

Diane from Chicago, IL

Leo says that just videos, images and MP3s can't fill up that much space all by itself. There has to be something else on the drive. Leo advises using a program called SpaceSniffer. It's free. Another is called WinderStat and TreeSize. Leo also thinks that Diane has backups on it.

What's the easiest way to burn CDs in Windows 7? (Part 1)

Episode 1068

Michael from Long Beach, CA

Michael wants to back up all his images onto CDs for safe keeping. He used to use Nero, but it doesn't work on Windows 7. Leo says that Windows may be able to burn it natively. He'll want to format the CD and then drag the files onto it. Then he can select "burn," and it'll be done. Leo says he doesn't put stuff on CDs anymore, he uses the Cloud instead. And with Flickr by Yahoo offering 1TB of free image storage, it's a good option. Also, just having one backup isn't really a backup. Backing up to the cloud is a wise idea.

How can I burn backup DVDs since Apple discontinued iDVD and is phasing out optical drives? (Part 2)

Episode 901

Paul from Arizona

First of all, he can still burn DVDs without iDVD, there just isn't a standalone app for it anymore. Leo doesn't really think backing up to DVDs is the best way to go. They decay imperceptibly, so he would have to check them regularly to make sure they're still good. Leo says backing up to an external drive is much faster and better, and then also to the cloud using a service such as Carbonite. That way he has three copies and in two different locations.