Technology has allowed us to capture every moment of our waking lives and preserve these moments into digital data. While some people still print these pictures and put them in albums, majority of us actually prefer to just keep these digital pictures and videos stored in our laptops, SD cards, flash disks or external drives. We even have digital photo frames that allow us to hang digital pictures right on our walls without having to print them. Given all these, it is quite easy to understand that we can lose valuable pictures and videos as easily as we can make them.
Knowing how vulnerable our precious photos and videos are, we should make it a habit to keep a backup copy of all our digital files. Computers and other digital storage devices can be easily damaged by a simple virus infection or hardware malfunction. You can never tell when your hard disk drive will become corrupted or when your grandmother accidentally wipes out all the contents of your SD card. Accidents like these can be avoided by precaution, but there will be instances when even the most precaution person will have to face the same problem and would have no other option but to whine about backing up his files.
Newer laptop models are already pre-installed by software that allows the user to set their computer to backup files on a regular basis even without user intervention. These regular backup schedules might cause your computer to slow down, but it will definitely be worth it. Since this process might take hours, it is better if you set your backup schedule at night when you are not using your computer or if you are a night person, set it at another time when it will not intervene with your own schedule.
However, scheduled backup would only save copies of your files in a different drive in your computer. This means that if your entire hard disk becomes infected or corrupted, even your backup files will be affected too. To make sure that this tragic end will not befall on your, it is better if you save your backup copies in an external drive or you can burn copies in a blank DVD. This way, you can be certain that even when your entire computer breaks, your files are still safe somewhere.
You can also save backup copies of your important files and documents in online storages. Some of these online services are free while some are paid. Free online storages usually range from 1 GB to 4 GB, anything more than that should be paid. If you are desperate and if you don’t want to spend money on these services, you can also keep multiple accounts so that you can have another 4 GB of space.
For photos, you can upload unlimited images in Photobucket, Facebook, Picassa and other photo sharing sites. You can also post your videos in Youtube (although your video should not be longer than 15 minutes). If you have time, you can compress your video file and upload it in a file sharing site like Rapidshare. For documents, you can send yourself an email with your files attached to the email. Different sites have different restrictions and limitations, so it is up to you to know what these are.
If you prefer to make your online uploads private, you can check the privacy settings of your profile. Most file sharing sites allow users to choose whether or not they will share their photos and documents to the public, so you don’t have to worry about your privacy being compromised. It is also a good idea to keep a record of all the sites where you have uploaded your files. Take note of the username or email address you have used for each site, as well as the password that you have set for the account. You can keep these details in a small notebook or save it in your email or Facebook for easy retrieval.
Always remember that you are the custodian of your own files. Once your files are lost or missing, you can complain and blame other people as much as you want, but this does not change the fact that you have already lost your files.