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Backing Up Your Files

In theory, theory and practice are the same thing; in practice, they’re not. That old saw applies perfectly to data backups. In theory, backing up data is an important part of everyday computing life. After all, we know that our data is valuable to the point of being irreplaceable, and you saw earlier that there’s no shortage of causes that can result in a hard disk crashing: power surges, rogue applications, virus programs, or just simple wear and tear. In practice, however, backing up our data always seems to be one of those chores we’ll get to “tomorrow.” After all, that old hard disk seems to be humming along just fine, thank you—and anyway, who has time to work through the few dozen floppy disks you need for even a small backup?

When it comes to backups, theory and practice don’t usually converge until that day you start your system and you get an ugly Invalid system configuration or Hard disk failure message. Believe me: Losing a hard disk that’s crammed with unarchived (and now lost) data brings the importance of backing up into focus real quick. To avoid this sorry fate, you have to find a way to take some of the pain out of the practice of backing up.


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