Author Topic: Back Up Your Research!  (Read 4476 times)

Offline Bobby G

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Re: Back Up Your Research!
« Reply #18 on: Friday 30 December 16 02:28 GMT (UK) »
I backup all my stuff in the cloud. I use my cloud storage kinda like a Windows PC, in other words all my folders, documents, images... everything I view/move around/edit online. My cloud storage is backed up via another cloud service and is done automatically. The beauty of this is that I can access all my stuff anywhere and it works really well because I also have my full tree online.
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Offline Triboy

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Re: Back Up Your Research!
« Reply #19 on: Tuesday 06 March 18 17:25 GMT (UK) »
It is alright emphasising Back  up, Back up but how is it actually carried out. In simple terms please which are easy to understand and follow.

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Online Guy Etchells

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Re: Back Up Your Research!
« Reply #20 on: Tuesday 06 March 18 21:14 GMT (UK) »
It is alright emphasising Back  up, Back up but how is it actually carried out. In simple terms please which are easy to understand and follow.

The simplest and most reliable form of back up is to copy each and every file (text, image, database) to a second hard drive.
There are many ways to do this some manual some automatic.
Depending how concerned you are you can back up to a diffrent hard drive on the same computer, a hard drive that is only attached to your computer when you wish to make or to access the back up or a hard drive in the "cloud" or at a remote location.
Many people make sequenced back ups, i.e. have a number of back ups made on different days in case one of the back ups fails as well as the master.
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Offline Berlin-Bob

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Re: Back Up Your Research!
« Reply #21 on: Wednesday 07 March 18 08:23 GMT (UK) »
Quote
Many people make sequenced back ups, i.e. have a number of back ups made on different days in case one of the back ups fails as well as the master.

One of the most common schemes is to have three copies "Grandfather, father, Son (GFS)".
Say you have three external hard-drives HD1, HD2, HD3

Week 1 : backup to HD1 = "Son"
Week 2 : backup to HD2 = "Son", HD1 = "Father"
Week 2 : backup to HD3 = "Son", HD2 = "Father", HD1 = "Grandfather"
Week 4 : backup to HD1 = "Son", HD3 = "Father", HD2 = "Grandfather"
Week 5 : backup to HD2 = "Son", HD1 = "Father", HD3 = "GrandFather"
Week 6 : backup to HD3 = "Son", HD2 = "Father", HD1 = "GrandFather"
Week 7 : backup to HD1 = "Son", HD3 = "Father", HD2 = "GrandFather"
Week 8 : backup to HD2 = "Son", HD1 = "Father", HD3 = "GrandFather"
Week 9 : backup to HD3 = "Son", HD2 = "Father", HD1 = "GrandFather"
etc.

Businesses might have 7 such copies (and backup daily) with extra backups per month.
It depends on how important it is to have copies to come back to,  and - especially for us - how much time it takes to replace all the files, images, and information you have collected in the course of time ( if indeed you can actually find replacements !!)
 
more on rotation schemes here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Backup_rotation_scheme

In general I try to follow the GFS method (roughly once a month) and on days when I am doing a lot on the computer (editing files, etc.), then I also make backups (almost) immediately after.

Bob

ps. I have mentioned elsewhere, that some people use the OSISHMAB method.
i.e. in the moment when the hard-disk crashes (irretrievably) they say:
Oh S*** I Should Have Made A Backup

Speaking as one who knows this method (very well !!) I can only say, regardless of the method -

Make Backups - Often !!!
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Offline Mart 'n' Al

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Re: Back Up Your Research!
« Reply #22 on: Wednesday 07 March 18 09:37 GMT (UK) »
I've recently retired after 40 years working with computers. I've seen everything that can possibly go wrong. I've also got a car. I get in it I start it I use it. I've got no desire to know anything about how it works, nor even to maintain it apart from an annual service. This means I can relate to people who use a computer in the same way, but if your data is important to you you owe it to yourself and your sanity to learn how to protect your data. There are probably millions of tutorials on YouTube and time spent watching them will be well spent. There is some excellent advice in this thread, but watching a film makes it so much easier. Of course this only applies if your data is important to you. A long time ago a very wise man told me that there are two sorts of computer drive, those that have failed and those that are yet to fail. And while I'm being apparently pessimistic comma make sure a friend has a copy of your data just in case anything bad happens to your house.

Martin
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Offline andrewalston

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Re: Back Up Your Research!
« Reply #23 on: Wednesday 07 March 18 13:34 GMT (UK) »
Backups are used to protect you from two classes of problem.
  • General disasters, such as theft of your PC, hard drive failure etc. For this you need to be able to set up a fresh PC from scratch and recover your applications and data. A fresh PC might come with an operating system ready installed, but little else. Windows comes with a backup program to allow you to recover everything to a replacement disc if yours dies and is replaced. The same program can be used to upgrade the drive, say to a solid-state one. This sort of backup can take a long time, but only NEEDS doing when something major changes on your PC.
    This sort of backup should be put somewhere safe - ideally in a different house. Imagine what would happen in a house fire or flood.
  • Finger troubles, such as accidentally deleting something. We've all done it! Windows also comes with a program to back up just the user data - FH data, music, photos - and the way your desktop looks and works. This is quicker, but some folks have thousands of photos and music files, in which case it won't be a quick job. There are plenty of programs around to allow you to selectively back up just the stuff that has changed since the last backup, which means that you won't be as tempted to put off the task. You should always be able to selectively restore, say, one accidentally deleted file.
    This sort of backup can be kept to hand, with occasional off-site copies. The "cloud" is a very convenient place for this.

Note that working with your files "in the cloud" will only help in the first of these types of problem. Your data would still be safe while you concentrate on getting back your system. If you delete a file from wherever it is sitting, or corrupt it, you need another copy SOMEWHERE to get it back from. Some cloud services may allow you to restore one or more files or versions of files from the past, but you need to check carefully before relying on this. If your system is set up to immediately replicate changes to a cloud service or second drive, you are in the same boat.

In the IT world, we regularly test backup systems. The only way you know whether everything is working correctly is when you try to restore. One system I used took a lot of setting up to get the backups running smoothly, but when you needed to restore, the software was clear and logical, reducing the stress when it mattered most.

There is an old story about the site which backed up religiously to a tape unit, and when a restore was needed it was discovered that all the tapes were unreadable. The motor which adjusted the position of the recording head had failed, and all eight of the (usually parallel) tracks of data had been written over the same section of the tape. The fault had been there for over a year.
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Offline panda40

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Re: Back Up Your Research!
« Reply #24 on: Wednesday 07 March 18 13:47 GMT (UK) »
I once accidentally chucked my usb memory stick out with some rubbish. When I realised what had happened it was too late and the bin man had been. So not only back your Pcs Also back any portable storage you use. I learnt the hard way.
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Offline Mart 'n' Al

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Re: Back Up Your Research!
« Reply #25 on: Wednesday 07 March 18 13:52 GMT (UK) »
It was Andrew's original long post that started this thread that made me comment this morning, and I'd just like to echo his more recent words. Another thing that he would agree with me on, is check that your backup works. Try reading it on somebody else's computer, or save your GEDCOM file and try re importing it as a new project. There is nothing worse than having a crisis, turning to your back up, and then finding that it is unusable.

Martin
Names: Loughborough and Loughbrough, (London, Hull and Hartlepool), Watson, (Jarrow & H'pool), Ballard & Glassop (E. London), Mowbray & Bulmer (both H'pool) & Leggett (Corton, Scarborough, H'pool, & Barnington, Yorks.). I use GRAMPS 4.2.6 software.

Offline Triboy

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Re: Back Up Your Research!
« Reply #26 on: Wednesday 07 March 18 16:42 GMT (UK) »
This all very interesting but lacks the one thing many of us needs. How precisely do we carry out a back up?
My particular problem is getting urgent. having changed broadband provider I now find that the previous supplier intends to close down the email address. I therefore need to copy many emails with their attachments quickly to avoid losing many hours research covering a long time period.