Backing Up to the Internet

 by Allan J. Greenberg

Backing up important files is becoming more and more important as we use our computers to store information and photos. Many of us use digital cameras and save our photos on our hard drive. If our hard drive fails, our photos will be lost. Therefore, any important information or photos saved to our hard drive must be backed up. Today, we have second hard drives (either internal or external), USB devices, CD-R/W and DVD-R/W drives to backup these files. However, the safest way to protect our files is to back them up someplace that is not in close proximity to our computers. A fire or other catastrophe in the location of our computer might destroy our files on our hard drive and our backup if the backup device is close to the computer.

So, one of the safest way to back up our important files is to store them on the Internet. There are many Internet services that provide storage space for a fee. There are also some online storage services that are free. Two of these free services are Mozy and ElephantDrive. You can click on the links to review their policies and to sign up for their service.

ElephantDrive currently provides unlimited storage space for free during their beta phase. Mozy currently provides 2 GB of free storage.

I clicked on the Get Mozy Free button on the Mozy Home Page and started the process of getting an account and downloading their software. The process is straight forward. After downloading the Mozy setup file and clicking on it, Mozy was installed on my computer and it automatically scanned my hard drive for files to backup. Depending on the results of the scan and the size of the backup, you may want to modify what actually will be backed up. Then it is a matter of starting the upload of the files and scheduling future backups.