Making PC backup easier with friendly tools


it’s one of those tasks that most PC users know they should do, but rarely seem to, then seriously regret it when something goes wrong.

Our increased dependence on the home computer as a digital lifestyle hub, complete with photos, home movies, CD collections and important personal documents, means that it’s even more important to have a backup plan in place.

Research shows that most don’t.

That’s why there’s a proliferation of new ‘user-friendly’ services emerging that offer both home and Internet backup.

Carbonite is one of them. It runs on a Windows computer, silently copying and encrypting files and sending them over the Internet to remote storage servers. Other services include iBackup and Xdrive.

Microsoft and Google may also launch free services backed by advertising.

With the increased speed and proliferation of broadband, and cheaper
data storage, backup tools should become even more accessible to
consumers. The services that will win will be cheap, mass storage
affairs that users can simply set and forget. Home users’ broadband
quotas will take a slight hit as files are transferred over the Net to
backup servers, but that’s a small price to pay for safeguarding
memories and information.

I’m sure some kind of education campaign is needed as well. Peter
Radsliff of Seagate Technology likens it to flossing your teeth –
important but easily forgettable. Unfortunately these days there are a
whole host of gremlins waiting to attack the health of our PCs. It may
well be the likes of Microsoft and Google that make consumers aware of
the risks – after all they have some of the biggest audiences.


Andy Merrett
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