I know, I know, your computer guys says you should back up your computer files every day or week or something like that. Yeah, yeah, I’ll get around to it. Nothing’s going to happen today. Right?
I never realized the true importance of backing up my computer files until one Thanksgiving morning about 4 years ago.
It was a lovely, sunny Thanksgiving morning and I was enjoying coffee with my in-laws who come over to visit from England to enjoy this most wonderful of holidays. As we were chatting, I remembered I had something to check on the computer.
I toddled off to my home office, sat down and rolled the mouse to wake up my computer screen. What happened next still makes my stomach ache with anxiety. When my computer came on the screen was completely blank except for a few icons. It looked like your computer does when you first purchase it. My heart sank. WHERE WAS ALL MY STUFF???!!!
I searched for my files. They were gone. All of them. Hundreds of thousands of hours of work and sweat and brainstorming and systems and processes, not to mention all my family files. I couldn’t believe it. I was staring blankly at a few empty folders.
Where was all my work?
Where were all my family photos?
Where were all my checklists?
They were all completely gone.
I burst into tears and screamed for my husband. Where was all my stuff? How had this happened? I didn’t do anything different yesterday. How on earth was I going to start over? How could I tell my clients I didn’t have any of their work? And don’t even get me started on all the important family first photos that had just disappeared into thin air!
I was stunned.
I took a deep breath and remembered that I had a backup service called Carbonite which ran constantly on my system backing up files shortly after they are changed. I called them. I knew it was Thanksgiving but this was too important to just email or open a chat box to discuss. THANK GOD they were there to take my call. And…they had a backup of my files! I was feeling hopeful again.
It took me and Bob (from Carbonite) 4 hours to restore my files. 4 hours – but we did it!
Needless to say, it was a HUGE lesson learned. Now, I always ensure my computer is backed up throughout the day by Carbonite. In addition, I manually back up all my files every Thursday to an external hard drive (which are pretty inexpensive nowadays!).
Now, ponder the question ‘What you would you do if you suddenly started your computer up and it was blank?’
Go, now and back up your computer files! You will sleep better tonight.