Monday, June 08, 2009

Busy this week...

...organizing a training session in school on technology in the classroom, doing in a QWF workshop leader application (which meant a time-consuming update of my literary CV -- the latest having been lost in the crash), and writing a review of Christiane Frenette's After the Red Night for the Montreal Review of Books -- my first paid reviewing gig. That's due at the end of the week, but since I'm flying to Vancouver Thursday for the League of Poets' Fest & Conference (aka AGM), it's got to be in sooner.

Also...recovering & re-updating files after the crash.

For security, my wonderful computer guy suggested an external hard drive, which goes for an extra $120 or so. This may be a good option, especially for saving programs and settings. (It also assures a little extra money for his pocket.) Burning disks is also a solution, although recordable disks can become unreadable in a scratch. But a 4 gig UHB stick, which goes for like $12, is adequate in most cases including mine for My Documents and photos... but, so easily lost!

Here, though, may be the securest and cheapest solution: on-line storage. You can even store 2 gigs for free. Here's a couple of sites a friend suggested:

If your house burns down, your stuff is "out there". If there's a nuclear holocaust, well, maybe they're stored underground. (I'm sure I'll want to get at my stuff, after I'm vapourized.)

Clearly, with about one in ten hard drives failing every year, this security issue is worth obsessing over until it's dealt with once and for all. Anyone "out there" -- are there known (i.e. hacker) issues with these sites?

UPDATE: Well, I tried downloading mozy free version, but found that I didn't have much flexibility in choosing files to back up: My Documents as a whole is greater than the 2 gig limit, and I couldn't break it down to choose the most useful folders that would fit under that limit. Then I balked about paying say $60 CN a year for the unlimited backup. What am I buying into? What are the security issues about storing files online? Could hackers ever get into my files? (There are issues even with incrypted software). Mozy it turns out is better-rated by a number of review sites than Idrive, but there have been some complaints that, like the old AOL, it's difficult if not impossible to cancel a subscription. Anyway, I need to be convinced, even though it does seem a quick and easy way to obtain off-site data backup.

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