Why You Should Back Your Data Up : Have you ever lost an important file on your computer? It is a very annoying feeling, which above the emotional factor involved can have far-reaching consequences if it was a valuable file. Every business and individual will most likely experience the loss of some amount of stored data on their computers sooner or later. This can also happen by mistake, when files or folders are accidentally deleted by human error. Data loss can also be caused by some sort of hardware failure (hard drive issue) or even more drastically an unforeseen accident or natural disaster. The loss of a few files can be a bad experience for most individuals, but it can mean serious trouble when this loss affects entire companies and businesses that may be depending on those files to help them carry on with business as usual.

The only way to forecast the unpredictable so to speak is to be ready for the worst-case sort of scenario. In the field of data recovery, backing up your data and files is this sort of virtual lifeguard. The simple act of backing up information can save you headaches, time and money. As well if the unexpected does come to pass, knowing that you have your most pertinent information stored and filed away allows for a certain (some might say “wonderful”) peace of mind.

A backup is essentially the act of routinely creating copies of your (or the company’s) important files and storing them on a secure form of media (be it a tape, a DVD, CD, etc). Although a backup plan is critical for the workflow of any good business, there are still many companies out there that don’t take the risks of not backing up seriously. As many such businesses and individuals learn the hard way, at some point you are likely to encounter a situation where you will wish you would have only taken the time to backup your files. Whereas retrieving stored data from a CD or DVD is a very basic operation that takes but a few moments and involves no cost factor, recovering data from a faulty hard drive that was not backed up can be a nightmare at best. Latching on to the fact that so many people elect not to (or forget to) back up their data, a multitude of data recovery companies and computer experts have turned the act of recovering lost information into a lucrative business. Worth remembering too is that while it varies greatly from situation to situation, there are times when no matter whom you pay to vigorously search for your lost material, it cannot be retrieved.

Two main types of data recovery exist; they are what are known as “logical recovery” and “physical recovery”. The latter is a very costly service, which usually has a starting sticker price of at least a few hundreds of dollars (a whole lot more than a package of writable CDs would have cost). Logical recovery is put into place when a hard drive has accidentally been improperly formatted, or files/folders have been deleted. Several software applications are currently on the market that can achieve a pretty decent job of finding these types of deleted files, but as with any type of data retrieval complete recovery of the missing, deleted or reprogrammed information is very rarely one hundred percent of its original form.

Ultimate data recovery complexity sets in when a hard drive has actually suffered some form of physical damage. This could range from dropping a laptop computer, to a fire to water damage such as that caused by a flood. In this sort of situation, where all or almost all of the hard drive has been lost, the customer will usually be charged per Kb or Mb of data that is actually recovered by the recovery service that they turn to for help. In many cases this type of recovery can lead to a bill in the thousands of dollars and many weeks or even months worth of time. Overall data recovery levels are usually at their very lowest when all of the information on the drives has been lost. Just as you lock your doors at night for peace of mind, an act that takes very little time, it is always wise to backup as much data as you possible can on your computer. If there’s one thing we can predict in life it is that the unpredictable can, and does occur to all of us at some point.