Flash drives are cheap these days — around $15 for16 gigabytes — which is a lot of storage. We tend to back up everything on them. But what if something goes wrong with that drive and it just doesn’t “flash” anymore, so to speak? We better have it backed up somewhere else. The obvious way to go is to drag and drop files from one drive to another using Windows Explorer, (“File Explorer” in Windows 8). Or you can upload the files to your private storage space on the Internet usingGoogle Drive, Dropbox, iCloud, and any of several other services. But this is slow going if you have a lot of files to copy. A $212 hardware alternative is Startech’s [...]
ThisLife.com offers free photo storage for 1000 photos or 100 gigabytes of files for $3 a month. It can import photos from any other site or folder, and use keyword searches to find particular shots — if you have previously labeled those shots with an identifying word (It’s not magic, you know).
There are dozens of backup programs and services, many of them free. But most of these, like Google Drive, Dropbox and Skydrive, just backup your files, not your programs. Well, people want to save their programs, so let’s go further To back up a whole computer drive, everything included, you need what’s called a cloning program. You’ll be glad you did it if the computer goes down in a really serious way and you want your programs back. Mac users have a utility program called “Time Machine” that does that. Windows 7 and Windows Vista users can use the operating system’s own “system image” routine to clone the drive. Click “start” on the home screen, then “help and support.” Type [...]
The new $99 “Backup Plus” from Seagate holds a terabyte of storage in a drive that can fit in a shirt pocket. It works with both Windows and Mac and you can go back and forth between them. It automatically backs up all your files and the photos and videos you share on Facebook and Flickr.
Seagate can now put a trillion bits of data on one square inch of a disk drive. They will soon come out with a six terabyte 3.5-inch drive for desktops and a two terabyte 2.5-inch drive for laptops. A 60 terabyte drive is feasible, say the engineers. To put that in perspective, a 60 terabyte drive could hold 216 million pages of text or 18,000 hours of good-quality video.
You may already know that keeping your computer free of spyware and viruses, having at least three gigabytes of RAM, and avoiding programs that hog your computer’s memory are a good way to keep your computer from slowing down. A new trick is to have a solid state drive instead of the traditional hard drive. Solid state drives (no moving parts — no spinning disk) respond almost instantly in sending and receiving data.
Storing information on the Internet makes some people nervous. It makes us nervous too. So how about having a private cloud? A “cloud” in computer talk is a storage place for information. Commercial ones for corporations and government tend to be huge. The “my-Ditto” is a book-sized box that can act as your own private cloud. It can handle up to four terabytes of storage if you pay $370 for the maximum capacity. Less capacity costs appropriately less. It has its own Internet address, which means you can access it from any device that can connect to the Internet.