How do I backup my computer?

There are three steps to developing a good backup plan

1. Know what to backup

There are several folders that are common repositories for files. The most common we'll list here:

Folder/Data Windows XP Location Windows Vista and 7 Location
Windows Live Mail Contacts C:\Documents And Settings\User Name\Application Data\Contacts C:\Users\User Name\Appdata\Local\Microsoft\Windows live\Contacts\Default\15.4\dbstore
Windows Live Mail E-Mail C:\Documents And Settings\User Name\Local Settings\Application Data\Windows Live Mail C:\Users\User Name\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Live Mail
My Documents * C:\Documents And Settings\User Name\My Documents C:\Users\User Name\Documents
Favorites for Internet Explorer C:\Documents And Settings\User Name\Favorites C:\Users\User Name\Favorites
Videos * * C:\Users\User Name\Videos
Music * * C:\Users\User Name\Music
Pictures * * C:\Users\User Name\Pictures
Desktop C:\Documents And Settings\User Name\Desktop C:\Users\User Name\Desktop
Outlook Account Settings HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\ Windows Messaging Subsystem\Profiles\Outlook HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\ Windows Messaging Subsystem\Profiles\Outlook
Outlook Data C:\Documents And Settings\User Name\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook C:\Users\User Name\AppData\Microsoft\Outlook
Outlook Signatures C:\Documents And Settings\User Name\Application Data\Microsoft\Signatures C:\Users\User Name\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Signatures
Outlook Express E-Mail ** C:\Documents And Settings\User Name\Local Settings\Application Data\Identities C:\Users\User Name\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Mail
Outlook Express Addresses ** C:\Documents And Settings\User Name\Application Data\Microsoft\Address Book C:\Users\User Name\Contacts
Mozilla Bookmarks C:\Documents And Settings\User Name\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\profile name\bookmarkbackups C:\Users\User Name\AppData\Roaming\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\profile name\bookmarkbackups

* Contains Pictures, Music and Videos in XP, separated out in Vista

** Renamed Windows Mail in Microsoft Vista


2. Have a good tool to backup.

While there are many ways to backup there are several vital traits in a good backup program.

For a walkthrough of setting up Syncback, read our Syncback backup tutorial

In some cases a complete image of a drive can be more useful, particularly when data isn't the priority, but rather recovering without having to reinstall programs. Drive Image XML is a great tool for automating this process.

3. Perform REAL tests of your backups by recovering data

If you followed step 2 this will be quite easy. First, browse through to a frequently accessed location on the backup, such as your My Documents folder. Then, find a file that you changed recently and open it up. If you didn't follow step 2 then be prepared to discover why most people ignore the single most important step in backups. Recovering files with a custom system can be arduous at best. Never, ever, ever trust logs. I've watched many people in shock at the discovery that they lost all their data. They could not believe it because: "the logs said my data was backing up just fine". If you can't see it with your own eyes, it's not happening. No exceptions.

Need help? Contact us any time.

Our technical staff is available to assist you with all your hardware and software needs.

Tips and suggestions provided to you by Computer And Network Support, LLC

Legal Disclaimer

Keywords for our site:
Microsoft Office 2000. Old Town Alexandria Computer Help Alexandria, VA PC Help Belle Haven. 22302 Computer Help Alexandria VA. Computer Troubleshooting Computer Help 22314 OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard Support Motorola Droid X Computer Help Alexandria VA Computer Repair Alexandria VA Tech Support 22305 Linux Support Computer Help 22314 22312 Unix Technical Support 22060 Hotmail EMail and Windows Live Paradox Mac OSX 22308 Personal Computer 22314. Google Android Laptop Help Ethernet Networks for Mac 20032 Mac OS X Help Microsoft Office 2007 Troubleshooting Computer Repair 22314. 22306 Burke Alexandria, VA Intuit Quickbooks Pro 2010 Computer Training Microsoft IIS (Internet Information Server) 22315. OS X 10.4 Tiger Laptop Setup Microsoft Access Arlington Google Apps Microsoft Exchange Server 22307. Computer Repair Alexandria VA Washington DC Computer Repair. Mac Troubleshooting Microsoft Outlook 2003 Computer Repair Alexandria VA Macintosh Help VA. Microsoft Windows XP Fix My PC OS X 10.5 Leopard Fairfax County Olde Town Alexandria 22304. Computer Repair Alexandria VA PC Repair Crystal City Microsoft Office 2007 Information Ubuntu Google Mail 22309 Alexandria VA Arlandria 20745 22303 Networking Support 20744 Computer Repair 22306. Computing PC Troubleshooting. Remote Computer Troubleshooting Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Belle View Microsoft Windows 7 Help. Computer Repair 22315 Microsoft Office 2003 Corel WordPerfect Office X5 Metro D.C. Area 22150 Fort Belvoir Laptop Repair Springfield Lorton. Marlan. Microsoft Office 2010 Washington D.C.. Corel WordPerfect Mount Vernon

Last updated: 8/10/2013

Web page unique ID: 748700

Main Page