Sorry for the delay in posting, but I've got issues. Well, not me exactly, but my computer. It's been sleeping over at the Geek Squad office at Best Buy awaiting repairs, and I brought it home yesterday expecting to plug it in and find a recovered, cooperative PC, but instead I'm finding little nuisance errors that, amongst other things, prevented me from getting access to my Blogger Dashboard.
I'd be in a total panic if I didn't know I've got a 3-layer security plan to protect my files.
I lost everything a few years ago. A friend was here to tune up my sluggish PC and when he turned it on it died right in front of him. (If this were my car or a household appliance, it would never die when a repairman was near.) So I at least had someone knowledgeable present when disaster struck.
Suffice it so say that all my manuscripts, photos, journals, genealogy, tax docs, etc, (MY documentable LIFE) was in peril, and I wanted to cry. After a few ashen-faced looks from my friend, he and Tom rigged a remote hard drive, (we called it Frankenstein) to my dead computer, and using that drive we were eventually able to access the old hard drive and copy all the files. (Bullet dodged.....)
I learned an essential lesson that day--Back everything up, all the time, many ways.
We attached a Bounce Back back-up drive to my computer which backs up the hard drive nightly, but eventually we found that even that plan was not infallible, so we finally bought a Carbonite plan--the super-duper Cadillac version) and now I know if my computer completely fries they will send me an actual hard-drive in the mail loaded with a complete copy of my computer on any date I specify.
Some brainiac devised a virus that currupted Norton for a time. Did you know that? So those of us who relied on Norton Anti-virus software to protect our computers were vulnerable as well. I ended up with three killer viruses a few months ago. I started getting the dreaded, "Blue Screen of Death" from time to time even though Norton kept assuring me it had scanned and eliminated all threats and I was fully protected. Then one day a few weeks ago . . . Nada . . . nothin'. Blue Screen warning, and then Frozen PC-City. But I didn't panic. I had a Geek Squad Black-Tie policy, and Carbonite. We've since added the Geek Squad's Technical Plan as well--three computers for three years for $249. It's slight overkill, but I can barely text and type, so now Geek Squad can install my Carbonite back-up drive if I ever need it.
So I'm back in the saddle, albeit on a slightly sway-back horse, but I'm still tweaking things with great expectations of perfection on the horizon.
My advice to you? Check to be sure you're backing up your computer regularly. Stop and consider how much of your life is stored on there--photos, address lists, financial documents, correspondence, and if you're a writer, your work. I have so many story ideas, character maps, rough drafts, contact lists, contracts, marketing tips, etc, on here that I'd probably lose the equivalent of years of work. So be smart and safe and maje sure you've got a plan. There are other remote sites and services as well, like Mozy. Just get something. You'll sleep better. Heck, I'm a worry wart. I'll sleep better knowing your work's safe too!