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Tech Tip #43: Back Up Often

Posted by on March 26, 2013

As a working technology teacher, I get hundreds of questions from parents about their home computers, how to do stuff, how to solve problems. Each Tuesday, I’ll share one of those with you. They’re always brief and always focused. Enjoy!

Q: How often should I back up my current project? How about my whole hard drive?

A: I teach my students to save early, save often when they’re working on a project. Deciding how often that is means determining how much you can tolerate losing should the computer crash. Ten minutes? Twenty? That sets ‘how often’ you hit Ctrl+S to save your work. After all, if the computer loses your work, you’re the one who has to start over.

As for the entire computer, once a week is good. Me, I save each project I’m working on and then save-as to a back-up location. I also have an always-on cloud backup that saves everything constantly on my hard drive.

I hate losing my work.

BTW, most people skip this full-blown back-up. Don’t! It’s easy, and if you’ve ever lost an important document, you’ll know that the end justifies the time spent.

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Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-8 technology for 15 years. She is the editor of a K-8 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum, and creator of technology training books for how to integrate technology in education. She is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy. She is webmaster for six blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, Editorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing Teachers, presentation reviewer for CSTA, Cisco guest blogger, a monthly contributor to TeachHUB, columnist for Examiner.com, featured blogger for Technology in Education, and IMS tech expert. Currently, she’s editing a techno-thriller that should be out to publishers next summer. Contact Jacqui at her writing office or her tech lab, Ask a Tech Teacher.

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