How to: Prevent Data Loss

Find your lost device.

Yes device.
Prey can help recover tablets. phones and laptops
Maybe those state and federal employees and admins should have had it.
Prey is an anti-theft tracking software for your laptop, phone and tablet that lets you remotely locate, lock, wipe and recover it if ever stolen, or simply missing.   You can also trigger actions like sounding an alarm or show an onscreen message to let the thief know you’re after them

Backup your data, simple as that.

Beware that some backup programs only make a copy on your existing hard drive. That will save you if you inadvertently erase your original copy, but will not save you from a hard drive failure.
It's better to make your copies on a CD, data DVD, or a USB Thumb drive or USB hard drive..
Many USB HDD's include the software to do back ups.
But these also have the possibility to fail, or get lost, unless you make multiple backups.
NOTE: DO NOT purchase Memorex CD's or DVD's. They are JUNK.
Out of a 50 pack you'll be lucky to get 2 or 3 that will be useable.



Norton Ghost

Online (Cloud) services will securely backup your data on their servers,
allowing it to be restored to a new computer, if that is necessary.
Probably the most recognizable are:



Google Drive

FREE Karen's File Backup Power Tool - Replicator
Backup your files to an external USB HDD

Here's an article from MakeUseOf
Kind of a side by side comparison of a few.

Backup/clone the whole drive, operating system and all

Macrium Reflect Free Image/clone your OS.


If you have windows, you may have 'Recovery Media', either the OEM disks or created them
yourself when your computer was new.  That's Good, BUT, if there's a serious crash and you use them to get your computer running again, there's no updates reinstalled.  You'll be burdened with reinstalling ALL of them over the coming months.

Make your own back up with all updates and software installed (at the time of creating your 'image')
Find the instructions here:

You'll also need imgburn installed to 'burn' the downloaded iso file to a disk.

Store the disk inside your computer - tape the sleeve to the inside of the case.

Another product that can also make a back up of your windows installation
NOTE: I have not tried this one
DriveImage XML

Make a backup once a year and all the updates are in there and will not have to be reinstalled.
Only the updates that came after you made the backup will need attention. Saving you time
and aggrevation.