Meanwhile, I want to report some shocking statistics about backups. Maybe they shouldn’t shock me, because they’re not so different from last year’s statistics, but my jaw still drops when I read these things.
Hard-drive manufacturer Maxtor (the creaters of Backup Awareness Month) sponsored a survey by Harris Interactive. The results: 46% of the respondents don’t make backups, even though 43% of them have lost data to viruses, system crashes, and drive failures, and 55% consider their data worth at least $1000.
I haven’t seen the survey, so I don’t know whether the people who don’t back up are also the people who value their data highly and/or the people who have lost data before, but the E-commerce Times article I read certainly implies it.
It doesn’t surprise me that much that average computer users don’t back up. If everyone backed up regularly, I wouldn’t have started writing these reminders. What shocks me is that people who have lost data still don’t back up.
Iron Mountain, which recently purchased LiveVault, conducted a survey of laptop users. An astonishing 64% of laptop owners whose machines have been stolen still don’t make daily backups. If you’re carrying all your data around with you, daily is probably better than weekly, because the machine could get dropped or spilled on as easily as stolen.
And the effect of data loss on these laptop users? Eighteen percent of them didn’t get back up and running for weeks or months. Another 64% were out of action for several days. That’s money down the drain for anyone in business, particularly if your laptop is your main machine.
Storage vendors are finding disk-based backup systems, virtual tape libraries, and continuous data protection a hard sell when it comes to small and medium businesses. In addition to the usual resistance to change, there’s the cost of replacing existing tape systems, and/or the monthly fees for CDP and other online backup systems.
Yet expense can’t be the only issue for consumers and home-office users. There are more online backup providers every day. They offer “set it and forget it” solutions for $10/month—or less. External hard drives cost very little per gigabyte, and many come with backup software to automate the process. Somehow, stubbornly, people persist in not backing up.
Naturally, storage vendors and data protection companies have a vested interest in getting more people to back up, so they’re working hard to raise awareness and educate people about what constitutes a real backup. (An extra copy of a file on the same disk as the original is not a real backup.) They’re also trying to make backup simpler to use, so that even technophobes have no excuse. Yet there doesn’t seem to be much impact so far: Maxtor’s 2004 backup survey statistics were almost exactly the same as those for 2005.
I try to educate people about their options for backup, but all I can really do is remind people who are already making backups that it’s time for another one. If losing data isn’t enough to convince a person to back up, nothing I can say is going to make a difference.
I would like to know, though: if you don’t back up, what’s your excuse? What excuses have you heard your colleagues, clients, friends, or family make for not backing up their computers? I’m willing to bet there’s a counter for all of them, but it’s just barely possible that somewhere in the universe someone actually has a valid excuse for not backing up.
I think a lot of people still think the only option is to backup to a CD/DVD, which can be a pain because it’s a manual process. They don’t realise how easy (and completely automated) and cheap (there’s plenty of freeware, e.g. SyncBack) it is to backup to an external drive or off-site via FTP, for example.The other main reason is apathy. Until they lose their own files they don’t care. And even then they only perform regular backups for a short amount of time. Inevitably they lose files yet again after they’ve stopped making regular backups.
Take a look at IBackup as it has a large number of powerful features for easy backups and restores of your data. IBackup for Windowscan do interactive backup and restore and also schedule regular online backups for Windows desktops, laptops and servers. IBackup accounts are compatible with most FTP clients on most platforms providing a powerful flexible tool to transfer files. IBackup supports backups for UNIX and Linux-based computers using rsync.IDrive enables you to map the IBackup online storage account as a local drive on your computer. You can then drag-and-drop, edit and save files in your online backup account using IDrive. Backing up multimedia files is very easy with IBackup. I use their application called IDrive Multimedia for this purpose. All that is needed is to simply move the multimedia files to the IBackup account and then play them with IDrive Multimedia. You will get instant streaming and you can do fast forward also. You can share files and folders by creating sharable links with ‘Web-Manager’and emailing these links to others. You can also password protect your files and folders, so that they can only be viewed by people who are supposed to view them. You can even `privately share’ data instantly with another IBackup user with Web-Manager. The private share feature can be disabled at any time. IBackup has several account options for personal, business and enterprise customers. You can also try other IBackup applications like IBackup Professional, in which data is encrypted with a user-defined key so that the data stored on IBackup Professional servers cannot be decrypted by anybody other than you.