For many people, the information they have stored on their computer is invaluable. Whether its family photos and memories, important business data or sensitive financial information, the effects of the loss of this data could range from disappointing and frustrating to completely debilitating.
In many cases, you can recover lost data with the help of a reputable data recovery company, but the fact remains that there are sometimes no guarantees with this process and the best defence is to take reasonable steps to prevent the loss of your data in the first place.
Here are the top 10 things you can do to reduce the chances of losing important files and information:
1. Back up important files on a regular basis.
This seems self explanatory, but many people don’t do it. Why wait for disaster to strike before taking steps to protect your most important data? You can store your backed up files on disk, on a USB flash drive, an external hard drive, or use a web related service to back up your files. While it’s not practical for all applications, you may want to consider keeping hard copies of your most important data files. A physical hard copy is usually much safer and then, worst that can happen is that you have to re-enter the information manually from the paper copy.
2. Don’t store your data and your operating system on the same hard drive.
Many word processing programs automatically store your files in the “My Documents” folder on your hard drive. The problem with this is that anything that compromises your computer operating system may delete or corrupt your data files as well. A safer option is to partition your drive into a program file zone and a data file zone. Then, if you have problems, (short of a total disk failure), you still have a good possibility of retrieving your files from the data partition.
3. Use a good anti-virus program and keep it up to date.
Viruses and malware are among the most common threats to your computer’s well-being. Most viruses spread through the internet and email communication, so you need to have a firewall and up-to-date anti-virus software. New viruses appear frequently and older, out of date anti-virus programs may not protect against the latest threats. This doesn’t mean you have to purchase new software, but rather that you need to install the latest updates for your current anti-virus program regularly. http://smartwebsiteideas.com/
4. Use power surge protection.
Using an un-interrupt power supply (UPS) protects your computer against power surges and power failure. The battery in the UPS allows you time to shut down your computer properly and avoid damaging your files or hardware components.
5. Keep your computer well protected.
Your computer should be kept in a cool, dry area, away from direct sunlight. The computer’s internal components can be damaged by moisture and heat. If possible, it should also be placed in a low-traffic area of your home where it is less likely to be bumped or knocked off its table or stand.
6. Don’t move your computer or laptop while it’s in operation.
Your computer is especially vulnerable to physical damage while it’s in use, so you should shut down your laptop or notebook when you are in the process of carrying it from one location to another.
7. Don’t use file or disk encryption unless absolutely necessary.
If you keep important business data on your computer, there may be some justification for using file encryption, but otherwise, encryption is unnecessary and makes it more difficult to recover your files if they are lost.
8. Turn off your computer when it’s not in use.
Your data is safer when your computer is turned off, so if you don’t plan on using the computer for a significant period of time, you’re better off to properly shut it down and turn it off.
9. Stop using your computer if you begin to see signs of data loss.
If you notice some of your files have mysteriously gone missing, or you hear grinding or clicking noises from your hard drive, back up your most important files (if you can) and then shut down your computer. Continuing to use your hard drive may result in some of your key files being over-written and lost forever.