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I’ve never filled in my religion on a form as Backup. Someday I will, just for fun.

The holy Trinity according to Merlin Mann:

  • If it’s not automated, it’s not a real backup.
  • If it’s not redundant, it’s not a real backup.
  • If it’s not regularly rotated off-site, it’s not a real backup.

I am a believer.

Like all believers I am constantly trying to improve.

When my ReadyNAS disk upgrade was completed last Sunday (it took much less time than I expected, only 8 hours, not 24) and I saw the little green bar showing more than 2Tb of free space my first thought was More backups.

You know not the hour nor the day when one will be needed.

How often have I heard people say

I was just about to…

Often enough.

Anyway, it’s a good article. Short, with links that are especially relevant if you’re a Mac user.

Yesterday when looking for something else I found a box of Sony Hi8 tapes with video of the children taken years ago. I had given the camera to my sister, having replaced it with another, a long time ago. Getting it back in order to digitize the tapes has been on my to do list. What did I find in the back of a closet — the very camera. I hadn’t registered its return (unused). I must have been busy at the time.

An entire box of unbacked up data!

Really, we could do with an annual public holiday called Backup day.

The future will be continuous data protection, with purges to keep the storage bill down (‘m doing this with Amazon S3 and this blog now). In the meantime, the chances are that you have old media you can no longer read and reading them will get harder not easier.

2 Responses to “Religion: Backup”

  1. Jeremy says:

    My recent backup of just my pictures to S3, using Jungle Disk, took over 6 days. But I cannot seem to find a way to speed my uploads above about 650 K/sec. Still, having done that, the future won’t take as long.

    Should I really be looking to read in all those old backup CDs? I suppose I must.

  2. Here my upload bandwidth is limited to 1Mb, even with a nominal 24Mb pipe. If I pay a bit more per month I can have 2.5Mb on the uplink. I managed to get a fixed IP at no extra cost and I know that I can have a discount if I ask for a MAC code (needed to move to another ISP).

    The CDs: it depends what’s on them. I still wince at the memory of losing an embarrassing nr of floppies to the tropics. There’s the content, and then there’s the shame!

    I went out today and bought a Pinnacle Systems widget for digitizing video tape and have done my first tape. Found it much cheaper on Amazon later but I was impatient.

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