Backup or Bust: Advice from a Serial Computer Crasher
What’s more stressful for a high school senior than college application season? Not much. Unless, like me, you spent the last days before application deadlines rewriting your college essay because you lost your original copy when your computer crashed.
Cue the tears.
Nobody ever told me my computer could crash, so I had no way of protecting myself when it did. As a result, I lost everything — my essays, my music, even my vacation photos from my trip to Paris that year!
It took me days to rewrite those essays and weeks to steal photos of my trip from friends’ Facebook albums. But I wouldn’t have had to agonize for days filled with panic, anxiety, and cheese breadsticks, had I just taken a few precautionary steps.
Four and a half years have passed since that day. I graduated from Emerson College, travelled across Europe again, and entered into my first post-college job. But do I have physical proof of these escapades? Not entirely. For a second time, the computer I’d put all my trust in for so many years met its untimely death. What I wouldn’t give to have those memories back in my digital life! (And to have learned to back up my computer the first time).
Computer backup is no joke. It’s a necessity — something I had to learn the hard way.
Working for a software company has taught me the importance of backup, and I can’t imagine life any other way. What would I do if I lost a copy of a project my team was relying on? If I lost the resume I had dozens of proofreaders help me perfect? If I lost pictures of my beach vacations and European adventures?
I cringe when I remember the times when that bright blue screen would pop up, indicating my computer (and a piece of my soul) had died and gone on to a better place. Not just because of all the work I had to put into recreating those files, but because all the time in the world couldn’t get them back.
I’ve definitely learned to start taking better care of my computer, and it didn’t take much. With backup software like Acronis True Image, you just need to install it, and it will take care of the rest. So with four years of university, and a handful of internships under my belt, I think I have the right to offer some advice: DON’T BE LIKE ME. BACK UP YOUR STUFF.