Digital Dementia

If you have ever lost your precious photos taken some years back with what was then top of the range digital camera, you would want to carry on reading this.

Not many technology users are aware but backing up your stuff if something you should be considering a whole lot more than you do now.

Here are some facts. Your hard drive will not last forever. The maximum time your hard drive can hold data is up to 10 years. But this is the optimistic scenario and does not include so called "life factors" such as malicious viruses and trojans that can corrupt your HDD beyond recovery or if just one day your hard drive just plain says NO.

So what can you do about it? How can you ensure your treasured memories are safe for other generations? Well, with some photos you might want to consider having them printed. Just ask your family and see if you have any photos that are 100 years old. Some of you will probably have very old photos preserved in various state but having survived that long might just be the proof in itself that good old printed photos will be a safe option to go for.

But what if you have 1000's of pictures what then? Print them all? You will also need to think storage. Photos can be bulky and heavy and will need to be stored somewhere where thay can be easly accesses and safe at the same time. Can you see? This already turning into an ordeal and even the thought of making a new room and caring heavy stuff makes me want to have a nap. I need a better fix.

Back it all up in the cloud. As much as this sentence sounds stupid to some I'm not excluding myself from that group of people that go, "Wait, what?". How can you back something in the cloud. "Dude, you sure you took your meds this morning?" But this Cloud is simply a fancy name for something IT guys would use way back in the Bronze Age of the Internet.

So what is Cloud and why should I care? Care is optional. If you "live long and don't care" this will not change you. It might make you appear more smart but should not change you, much. Cloud is a glorified name for a HDD that syncs the stuff you need synced off your device. This is especially useful if you take pictures with your mobile phone and often lose your phone.

If it's an iPhone, it's not a big loss, nobody cares as it has practically £0.00 resell value not to mention the awkwardness of actually having one and bragging about it. But what if it's a camera and a memory card. That is usually it. You have not backed up your photos, you've lost your wedding photos your life is ruined. O maybe it isn't.

Maybe, one day you have read something about it on the internet and got yourself well entrenched in modern back up tech. Maybe you are already using third party backup solutions with your smart phone.

Well, this is how to do it. There are many Cloud providers offering various packages for their subscribers. Some packages are paid but there are some that offer this feature for free. Perfect example would be Google or Dropbox. If you already have Gmail account, it's like you already have Cloud. All you need to do is to have your device configured so you can sync your photos, documents and contacts with your Google account. This is very useful not only to have backup of your photos but also to sync your contacts between devices without the need to manually go through your contact book one-by-one when having more than one phone or when upgrading your handset. This backup is only partially good as Google will optimise your photos so they will be lighter in kb and optimised by Google algorithm.

You can also use Dropbox as it seem to be syncing the original files on your Dropbox account. Drawbacks are low capacity for free accounts. But when you download their desktop software on your computer or a smartphone app you are granted more space. Same if you introduce new users. You get an incentive in a form of extra space. Access is also quite easy as when you download their software it creates a regular desktop folder on your computer screen so you can access all your stuff by just clicking into it.

But what all that is just not enough? What if you have a fake name account or been a naughty troll because you thought it's 1998 and one day you woke up with your accounts suspended or deleted. Or maybe you have cancelled your paid subscription and all got lost. Who is going to be blamed? You, of course.

So how can we save ourselves from the digital dementia? Well, on top of the above we can also invest in our own Cloud Drive. These devices are relatively cheap these days and for around £150 you can find 2TB Cloud HDD's that can be safely tucked away on your Home Network. I personally would recommend nothing else but Western Digital brand of Hard Disc Drives. As a "heavy user" I went though loads of other brands of HDD's that are just absolute shit and should not be considered for critical systems. You need to remember that every so often HDD's will need replacing and if you have one that was on for more than 10 years you need to do it NOW because every second is on borrowed time.

Enterprise solutions are mostly built for long term reliability and use a type of "Mirror" in the architecture called RAID. This type of architecture is nothing else but a few HDD's connected together and holding the exact copy of the data on each of its HDD's so even when one fails, nothing is affected. Such architecture may also include on-the-fly technology allowing the administrator to remove the faulty component while the system is "On" and used by the enterprise.

If you are a member of the jewellery trade you might want to give me a call and find out what would work for you best. If you are an existing Jewellery customer you will have an automatic discount. 

Amber etc...Ltd 
01204 895 514