Whether you use your home computer for business or simply recreation, it is crucial that you have a backup plan in place.
If you are not technical or if you need a lot of critical data backed up and cannot afford for any mistakes or lost information, then it is highly recommended also to work with a trustworthy IT support company to assist you with your backups. We recommend IT Support specialists – Fluent Technologies Ltd.
There are so many elements of a computer that have the potential to go bad. Hard drives fizzle out, power supplies can overheat, and a motherboard can fry.
All of these situations can mean that everything on your computer is lost. While losing the progress you had made in a video game can be frustrating, the rise in popularity of digital media means that a whole lot more can potentially be lost. Photos, videos, and years of work can be gone in a flash.
Furthermore, if you are storing valuable information for or about your clients then you really need to make sure you get this covered.
Fortunately, there are programs that can help. A good backup program will automatically make a copy of your data, and ensure that it is stored somewhere safe.
Should a problem arise, whether it is a virus or simply a mechanical error, you will be able to restore your data to the last point it was backed up. These can often be configured to save your data as often as you like. Some people only need to have their data backed up monthly, while others may need daily restore points.
If all this sounds expensive, fear not. There are programs available as freeware, shareware, or even donationware.
Freeware programs are, as they sound, free to use. Often they have limitations, such as a maximum number of saves or only a certain amount of data allowed.
Shareware is software that is available free to try. There is usually a time period attached, such as seven days, two weeks, or a month for example. During this period you can evaluate the software and determine if it suits your needs. If you like it, a license can be purchased that allows you to continue using the program without interruption.
Donationware is a combination of the two. The software is often available free to use. However, you may be prompted to make a small donation to the developer if you find it useful.
Top 3 Shareware Backup Programs
1. Acronis True Image
Acronis True Image is a shareware program that creates live full images of your computer. This means that if you ever need to restore your data, it doesn’t just restore your data. It restores an exact copy of your entire computer as it existed when the image was made.
You can also customise which files or folders you want to be imaged, so you can exclude unnecessary files to save space. You can try out Acronis for 15 days free of charge, after which you can purchase a license for $50.
MozyHome is a backup program that is either freeware or shareware, depending on the features you need. If you just want a basic, free, backup service, the freeware program will provide you with 2 gigabytes of space free of charge.
This backup program is especially easy to use, once set up, it will handle the backups on whichever schedule you set. If you need more space for your backups, they also provide an unlimited service that backs up your data online for $5 per month.
Carbonite is similar in function to MozyHome. However, it does not have a free tier of service. Instead, Carbonite charges a flat $50 per year to use their unlimited online backup.
While it costs more up front, it works out to be cheaper than MozyHome – which at $5 per month works out to $60 per year. If you are not sure if Carbonite is right for you, you can evaluate it free of charge for 15 days before needing to purchase the software.
With so much of our lives now stored digitally, it is more important than ever to have a reliable system for backing up your data. Not only does having a backup program ensure that you never lose a photo or file again, but it also makes it easier to transfer your important data when you decide to upgrade or buy a new computer or laptop.