Of course, this method works only if you have regular access to enough upstream bandwidth to handle all your essential data. Using Method A, Method B, or a combination of both will protect 99 percent of PCs 99 percent of the time, though ita€™s worth noting that local backups restore far more quickly.
You can stop reading nowa€”unless, of course, youa€™re a seeker of the perfect backup plan, or you want some practical advice. If you dona€™t think youa€™ll remember to back up regularly, pay for an automated backup program such as Genie Timeline to do it for you.
The classic example of a trinity backup is the aforementioned Method B: the original data on your PC or laptop, the first backup on an external hard drive thata€™s disconnected and stored safely when not in use, and a third copy safely harbored at an online storage service. The more modern version is Method A, which assumes that the online service you use is properly backed up in multiple geographical locations.
If youa€™re going through the trouble to rip all of your movies to your PC, make sure you back a€™em up so that effort doesna€™t go to waste!
Though not strictly necessary, it is especially convenient to have a complete backup of your desktop or laptop (ideally with your mobile-device data on board), as described in Method B. If your broadband connection has enough upstream bandwidth, back up to an online file-hosting service. Obviously, many people dona€™t have sufficient upstream bandwidth, or a data set small enough to make the online option viable as a complete solution.
ROBERT CARDINNAS boxes such as the Western Digital My Book Live are great for storing your backups remotely.
The latest version of Acronis True Image does a decent job of walking you through the backup process.
For backing up just your data, Windows has its own capable backup application, but you can find dozens of backup programs that are easier or more versatile, including notables such as Acronis Backup & Recovery and True Image, Easeus Todo Backup, Genie Timeline Backup, and NovaBackup.
If you want something more along the lines of Applea€™s elegant and easy-to-use Time Machine (which combines full system backup with data backup), Genie Timeline may be what you seek. Repeat as necessarya€”daily, weekly, or monthly, depending on how often things change and how risk-averse you are.
Tip: After your initial full backup, perform incremental backups (backing up only the changes since the last backup) or differential backups (backing up all changed files since the initial full backup) to save time. Some users (including yours truly) prefer backing up to image files, largely because ita€™s easy to mount such files as virtual hard drives for simple browsing and recovery. You can redirect all the a€?Mya€? folders (My Documents, My Photos, My Videos, and so on) to this partition. Due to its high incidence of profanity, I cana€™t link you to the most famous lost-data support call in history. How would you feel if your Great American Novel disappeared, or if your wedding video or pictures of lost relatives vanished? Simple but effective, Genie Timeline Backup 2012 Free brings effective, revisioned file backup and a Windows Metro interface to the table. PCWorld helps you navigate the PC ecosystem to find the products you want and the advice you need to get the job done.
Add email addresses and change settings for how the Mail app handles incoming and outgoing messages by navigating to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars.
From this screen, you can now alter options that change the way mail is displayed, composed, and handled in Apple’s default Mail app, as well as add additional email accounts for Gmail, Outlook, and more. Another option that you might have skipped during initial setup, if you have decided that you would like to protect your device from easy access, you can add a passcode. To choose a new ringtone and edit other system settings for sound and vibration, navigate to Settings > Sounds.
You can further refine ringtones and alert sounds for individual notifications such as mail and messages as well as choose whether to play sounds when unlocking your iPhone and when typing. If you wish to silent all sound on your device, you can enter silent mode by flipping the switch located above the volume buttons on the side of the iPhone to the red position.
You can choose favorite contacts for quick access by tapping Favorites at the bottom of the Phone screen.


If you are coming over from an Android device, it is possible to transfer your contacts in bulk via one of several available methods. The homescreen is where it all happens in iOS, it’s the gateway to apps, games, and services that make the iPhone one of the best mobile devices on the market.
You can customize the iOS 7 homescreen by rearranging app icons and the dock. Long-press an icon until it begins to shake.
Apple provides a number of dynamic and still backgrounds to choose from, but if you want to really stand out from the crowd, you can choose a custom photo from your library. You can choose to use a different background for your lockscreen and homescreen, offering an even greater degree of customization. Lurking below the surface of the already powerful iPhone are some neat usability tricks that will make the experience even better. Try asking Siri a question like “Where is the best pizza near me?” or to perform a task such as “Remind me to call mom later tonight.” You will be surprised at how smart she can be. Downloaded apps and games will be synced to your Apple ID and available across all devices that support them.
Ita€™s the getting off your rear to actually do it that stymies most people, myself included. Choose the one that supports all (or the largest percentage) of your devices, and use the downloadable app that the service provides to maintain a mirror of your files on your local PC. To lower the risk of data loss to the freak-karmic-event level, you must have three copies of your important data: the original, a backup of the original, and a backup of the backup.
That should give you your three copies, but for the sake of paranoiaa€”with a nod to corporate short-sightednessa€”wea€™ll assume the third copy is on your local computer and maintained by the online servicea€™s app. The choice is ultimately yours, but I recommend protecting anything you might want or require later that you cana€™t re-create: electronic documents (tax stuff, business stuff, any hard copies youa€™ve scanned and discarded), artistic creations, memorabilia (photos, videos, your old band recordings), or pretty much anything whose loss would evoke extreme negative emotions. Ita€™s by far the quickest and easiest way to restore your operating system, applications, and data, should your system succumb to hard-drive failure or a malware attack. Using such a service is pay-to-play, but costs a fraction of what it costs to recover data from a failed hard drive.
In that case, reduce your backup set (what you select to back upa€”dona€™t remove the data itself) to the bare minimum, keep it online, and then back up the rest locally using storage drives you attach to your computer or network.
Use two drives and alternate between them if you dona€™t plan to back up online, or ideally, even if you do. Gigabit ethernet is as fast as USB 3.0, and a NAS box lets you back up multiple computers on a network without having to drag a box from location to location. Alas, the restore routine isna€™t particularly robust, and it can fail with as simple a change in hardware as replacing your hard drive with a smaller solid-state drive.
This will be the external drive you purchased as a backup repository, a NAS box, or even a shared location on another PC. You should select all of them the first time around, excluding the destination drive for the backup.
Youa€™ll also find continuous backup products, such as Stardocka€™s KeepSafe, which perform a full data backup (no OS or applications) and then look for and back up changed files at short intervals (such as every 5 minutes). Start over with a new full backup once a week if youa€™re backing up daily, once a month if youa€™re backing up weekly, or once every four to six months if youa€™re backing up monthly. With Google Drive and SkyDrive, you get local copies of your files on your PC if you install their respective apps. But I can summarize: A user sent in a laptop to have a motherboard replaced, and the company replaced the hard drive. If you didn’t do so at that time, you can link your Apple ID to iCloud via the setting menu. It will help you locate or track your iPhone if it is lost or stolen as well as perform a remote wipe of system data. From this menu you can manage iCloud storage and purchase additional space (the first 5GB is free) and choose to have your phone systematically backup important data and settings info to the cloud.
From here you can enable iMessage, Apple’s free messaging service, and choose which numbers and email addresses are associated with your iMessage account.


Add a photo to personalize or choose a nickname for your contact, as well as other info such as address, birthday, website URL, and other notes. You can now click the ‘X’ to delete it from your homescreen (some Apple apps cannot be deleted) or drag it to a new position (or second or third homescreen, for that matter). Dragging an icon on top of another creates a folder. The dock remains static no matter which homescreen you are one, so use this area for your most used apps. From multitasking to Spotlight Search, Control Center and more, knowing a few simple shortcuts and gestures will make navigating the iOS 7 interface a breeze.
Knowing them will have you typing messages faster than you ever thought possible. Check out our guide to the iOS 7 keyboard’s secrets for the details. From this screen you can choose between male and female voices for Siri, adjust settings for voice feedback, change Siri’s language, and enable the helpful Raise to Speak gesture.
Thankfully you now own an iPhone and have access to the App Store, which contains over 1 million apps and games. If you pay for an app and later delete it, you can download it again at any time at no extra charge. Youa€™ll cry!) But first, leta€™s walk through your many storage options to see how deceptively simple it is to back up everything right nowa€”before your inevitable data disaster occurs. The secondary and tertiary copies should be in different locations: Ideally, keep one on premises (local) for swift restores and recovery, and keep one off-site where it isna€™t subject to the same physical threats (lightning, flood, theft, and the like).
With hard-drive space costing about 5 cents a gigabyte, and flash costing about 60 cents per gigabyte currently, you can afford it. Most NAS boxes support rsync, which allows you to mirror one to another in a remote location (such as your aunta€™s house)a€”a possible alternative to online backup. In this case, you can still have the PC mount the system image as a virtual hard drive, but only after reinstalling the operating system manually.
Most of the time ita€™ll create a local backup on your external hard drive at the same time it backs up online. If your data set changes quickly (or if you dona€™t like scheduling backups), you can opt for real-time backup. Depending on the app involved, you may need to sync its data or docs using iTunes, or you might have to use whatever online storage option the app employs (Dropbox is common) and then copy the items onto your PC from there. With no backup of what was apparently a two-year project, the user goes on one of the greatest answering-machine tirades in history. While there is no right or wrong way to get to know your new smartphone, here are 10 essential things to do when you first get your iPhone. Subsequently, use Windows Backup to back up your important data daily, weekly, or monthly to the hard drive. Remember that the rule of three is a practical minimuma€”an extra copy here and there wona€™t hurt.
You can always download those items again later, though if youa€™re ambitious enough you can back them up as well.
Without a disaster-recovery backup, youa€™ll wind up restoring the operating system and applications individually from scratch. If you do, therea€™s nothing wrong with keeping a backup or two on disc, but thata€™s your concern. A surer bet is to use a third-party tool, such as Acronis True Image or R-Drive Image, that isna€™t as fragile when it comes to restoring to different hardware. NTIa€™s Shadow, for instance, performs a full backup, after which it hooks to the operating system and saves files as they change. Or, you can simply copy stuff over from the appropriate folder when the device is attached to your PC via USB. Ia€™ve never found out whether the user got the hard drive back or whether the drive had failed.



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