Geeks2U Promise
We guarantee you'll love our fast, friendly service - or we'll refund your money.  
133,572 Happy Customers & Counting
Need tech support?
1300 769 448
Extended hours, 7 days a week
Home  /  geekspeak  /  Storage is cheap, but your data isn’t

Storage is cheap, but your data isn’t

Just recently, the drive connected up to my desktop Mac that served duty as the Time Machine backup died. It did so without warning; it just upped and carked it. It happens, but it left me without a quick viable direct backup of my system, and most particularly my own files.

So I shrugged, unplugged the drive and put it aside for e-waste recycling before heading out and buying another one. In this case, I switched brands, but it’s not terribly relevant to say from which to which, because there’s a simple truth at the base of all hard drives. They’re all going to die at some point. I’ve had good drives from all the major vendors, and I’ve had drives that were terrible and died quickly.

You do sometimes get bad “batches” of drives from a single vendor, but I’ve never hit a brand that’s 100 per cent reliable, because no such creature exists. The trick, especially for backup drives, is to check, as I did, that they’re still functional, and be ready to replace them as quickly as feasible. It’s also wise for truly critical data to maintain a secure, preferably encrypted online backup. That’ll be much slower to access in case of a main drive failure, but if you’re unlucky enough to get a system drive and backup drive failure in one go, you’ll be thankful even for a slow download of an old backup.

The total cost for my replacement 2TB backup drive, larger than the old one was less than a hundred bucks. The total value of that drive, however, is nearly priceless, because my own data — and yours — is often irreplaceable. You can’t take photos again, you probably don’t have the time to recreate documents, even if you’ve got the original source material, and so on and so forth. Yes, it’s feasible to pay people to perform data recovery on drives, but it’s painfully expensive stuff next to a sub-$100 drive every once in a while.

Backup is one of those topics that tends to send people rapidly to sleep, and while it’s not interesting, it’s necessary. It’s essentially insurance, but a whole lot cheaper than the type you pay on your car, house or contents. With so much of our lives being lived via digital means, it’s an insurance you’d be incredibly foolish to do without.

Share

Recent News

Popular social media destination Facebook made worldwide headlines recently, and not for the kinds of reasons that Facebook might want to be noticed. That’s because for a roughly 12 hour period, access not just to Facebook, but also Instagram and Whatsapp — all services owned and operated by Facebook — consumers worldwide had issues connecting… More 

There’s a well-known test that taxi drivers in London have to sit, called “The Knowledge”, that can take years to pass, detailing just about every street in the UK’s very disorganised capital road system. It’s tough learning that many roads, although it may have side benefits, with some studies suggesting that London black cab drivers… More 

Not that long ago, Apple surprised everyone by updating its line of Mac Mini computers. The Mac Mini isn’t like any other Mac that Apple sells. Where much of its output is in laptops, or the 2-in-1 style iMac computers, the Mac Mini is instead a “headless” computer — a fancy way of saying that… More 

There’s been a lot of speculation around foldable phones in the past 12 months, fuelled by the hype from the manufacturers busy producing devices that can fold from phone to tablet and back again — or even crazier concepts, like phones that become slap bands when you place them around your wrist. That latter idea… More