Backup and Recovery

Best backup practices and recovering lost data.

Reminder: Western Digital Hacked

Western Digital NAS

Episode 1809

Western Digital's My Book Live Network Attached Storage has been hacked due to an exploit discovered in 2018 and was never patched. Hackers can run a program of their own making taking advantage of it. A hacker has searched for numerous My Book Lives and executed a script to erase them, leaving many without the backups they were relying on. Western Digital's solution is to have users unplug their MBL from the Internet while they research the hack. Will WD issue a fix?

What's the Best Way to Back Up My Hard Drive?

iDrive

Episode 1808

Dave from Redlands, CA

Dave uses iDrive as his main backup option, but he wants to be sure he has a good backup to his backup. This is mostly for his media collection, which amounts to 1000s of songs and DVDs. He has an 8TB hard drive. Leo says there are three kinds of backup ... image backup for quick restore, a standard data backup, and then an incremental backup, which is used for when people update a file and the backup only archives those changes. This could also include versioning. Then once people restore from the full backup, they can then restore the incremental changes as needed.

How Can I Get Data Off My Computer With a Password?

Windows 10

Episode 1805

John from Moorpark, CA

John's friend has a Windows computer from her deceased husband that she can't log into. It's used though. Leo says the best thing to do is start over if she doesn't want the data off it. Download the Windows 10 Media Creation Tool, save it to a thumb drive, and then plug it into the computer. Then boot to it, and reinstall Windows. It'll wipe the drive and give her a pristine version of Windows.

How Can I Get Data Off Old Zip Disks?

IEEE 1284

Episode 1805

Joe from Burlington, NJ

Joe is putting his family history together. This includes all the photos and videos as well. But the problem is, he has a few hundred zip disks and doesn't know how to access them. He has a zip drive, but he needs a parallel to USB converter. Leo says he can get them on Amazon for a pretty decent price. But he will need to get one that has the right connector. It's the iEEE 1284. He also wants to be sure he doesn't get one that's for printers. It has to be bidirectional.

How Can I Get My Docs Back from Google Docs After They've Been Erased?

Docs

Episode 1804

Bobby from San Diego, CA

Bobby's homework assignments have gone missing from Google Docs. It's a school account using Canvas. Leo says to talk to the IT guy at the school.  He did that and the school said to "call Google." But Google doesn't have that kind of support. What would be more helpful is to contact the developer of Canvas. 

How Can I Recover My Windows 8 Password?

Windows

Episode 1804

Jan from Santa Clarita, CA

Jan is trying to fire up an old HP laptop and it's asking for a Windows login password. She doesn't know it. It's Windows 8. Leo says that there are some cracks that can hack a Windows 8 login. But she needs to be careful that she isn't making the problem worse with malware. If she doesn't need the data, the easiest would be to wipe the laptop and reinstall Windows. Then, if she has a backup, she can just restore it.

How Can I Back Up My Mac Hard Drive and Make it Bootable?

Mac Mini

Episode 1804

Tom from Largo, FL

Tom isn't thrilled with the new iMacs, and Leo recommended he pick up a Mac Mini and get a dock and monitor for it. So he did, and now he wants to move his data from his old mac to his Mac Mini. But the Thunderbolt drives are too expensive. Can he use USB 3 drives? Leo says absolutely. He can also clone the drive and make it bootable. Leo recommends Carbon Copy Cloner since SuperDuper doesn't offer a bootable option now, due to security features in the most recent macOS Big Sur. He can also still use an older version of SuperDuper.

Why does DropBox delete files from my computer?

Dropbox

Episode 1803

David from Los Angeles, CA

David had to buy a new computer. He put dropbox on it, but now it's "barking" at him to buy more space. So he deleted some files, but dropbox also deleted them from his computer! What? Leo says that Dropbox really isn't a backup solution. It's a file syncing solution. That's why you only get 2GB for free. The reason why they delete it from the computer is that DropBox works through Sync, so it can match the files you have on dropbox and the computer.

Google Photos Unlimited Storage Ends Tuesday

Photos

Episode 1801

This Tuesday, Google Photos will end its unlimited storage feature, in favor of just 15GB per user account. After which, users will be charged $2 a month for 100 GB. But users can upload as many photos as they want until Tuesday and it won't count against that cap. So now is the time to take your day off and backup all those images to your Google Photos account before it's too late. Other options ... Amazon Prime Members get free unlimited storage. Shutterfly also offers unlimited storage.