3-2-1 backup

Is redundancy in backup really important?

Episode 1409

Phil from Aurora, CO

Phil wants to know if redundancy in backup is really that important. Leo says that it's vital, and not only that, but he'll need off site backup as well. Is Carbonite necessary? Leo says it's valuable, but he could also just leave a second hard drive at work or at his mother's house and just swap them from time to time.

(Disclaimer: Carbonite is a sponsor)

Will I be able to access my photo backups after I get a new Mac with Thunderbolt?

Thunderbolt Port

Episode 1407

Michelle from Northridge, CA

Michelle has been using USB to back up the photos on her Mac, but the new Macs have Thunderbolt now. Will she be able to still back up her photos? Leo says those new Thunderbolt ports can take USB using an adapter. So this isn't an issue. Leo says that thumb drives are notoriously unreliable, though. She might want to invest in an external hard drive instead. It's good that Michelle has three copies of her photos, but it's important that she gets one off-site. Leo suggests she take one of the copies to work.

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.

Should I back up my computer?

Episode 1320

Rod from New Jersey

Rod is ashamed to admit he's never backed up his computer. Leo says he's not alone. Most people don't and they don't get serious about it until they lose something. Rod is wondering if it's easy to do. Leo says sure. As we move more data in the cloud, he's probably already doing it to a certain extent without realizing it. His email is backed up. When he posts images to Facebook, it's backed up.

Do I need a hard drive backup if I'm backing up to the cloud?

Episode 1184

Jim from Sacramento, CA

Jim has heard that physical media is dead and everything is going to the cloud. How does that affect a 3-2-1 backup strategy? Leo says that while it's right that data is moving to the cloud, it can be slow to get back. Having local backups in addition to a cloud backup is a good idea. So he should have an online hard drive, a near line hard drive backup, and then his off site cloud backup. Leo still recommends having a hard drive backup that he can get to.

How can I get back images when upgrading Windows?

Episode 1177

Richard from West Los Angeles, CA

Richard upgraded to Windows 8 and lost a lot of photos that he can't replace. Will that happen in Windows 10? Leo says it shouldn't happen at all. Things may happen, but always, always backup before doing any kind of upgrade. In fact, if he doesn't have three copies of his images, he doesn't really have backups at all. Always backup and include one off site. That's really the only way to keep them safe.

Can I get my photos back after partitioning my hard drive?

hard drive

Episode 1088

Jerry from Los Angeles, CA

Gary put Windows 7 on an old XP machine. Leo says it was designed to upgrade from XP, so that should be just fine. He tried to alter the partition and now he doesn't have access to his photos. Leo says ideally, Gary should've backed up the photos first to an external drive. But once he repartitioned the hard drive, all the data was erased. There are two kinds of portioning: destructive and non-destructive. It sounds like Gary used the Windows partition utility which is destructive, and the photos have been erased. That's why backing up is so crucial.