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Don't Lose Your Data Like a Dummy: 3-2-1 Backup Method and Why your Data is Probably at Risk

 

 

One exabyte of data is created every single day, that is one million terabytes created by humans daily. It is so much data that ninety percent of all data that has ever been created since the beginning of humankind until now has been created in just the past two years, it's crazy and more data means more data loss. Data loss costs companies and industries billions of dollars every single year in fact 70 percent of all small businesses that have a major data loss event go out of business within just two years following the incident and it's not just the business world.  I mean who amongst us has not made an oopsie deleted a family album of photos lost uh research paper because we put it on our hard drive that got corrupted. It sucks but the reality is that data loss is 100 percent a matter of human error while equipment breaking might be expensive and inconvenient it is negligence of us the people that results in unrecoverable data loss and people like you and me there's a really easy method to make sure that this doesn't happen. It's called the 3-2-1 rule, three copies on two formats one of them off-site. Okay so let's take this category by category, we know we need three copies but what's the first one going to be well congratulations you're already doing it that's just any file that exists anywhere this is your production version so let's say I'm editing a video on my uh laptop here all my footage is stored on the laptop this internal SSD on my computer. Well then that's going to be my first copy if you're a master student and your entire thesis is stored on a USB thumb drive and this is what you carry to and from other computers to continue writing it this is your first copy what's important to know about the first copy is that it is your production version it is the master it is the first that you edit and backups are merely replications of this original file knowing that it's ideal that you never have to use your backups because sometimes they're not always concurrent with the original files so you should try the best you can to never have to need a backup and so using something like this a USB thumb drive which is generally very cheap and not very reliable and small and easy to lose and your dog can eat them not the best place to store your original Master first copy file an internal SSD on a laptop would be a much better location because these use much more robust uh ssds the nand flash chips are generally higher quality but you can still have issues here what if you run a piece of software that tries in uh free it tries to free up some space on your local disk and you delete half your video footage because you're like oh those are big files whoopsie that's gone what if you apply a firmware update and it's completely botched your machine and you have to reformat your drive not ideal so I prefer a first copy that by its very Nature has a little bit of redundancy built in most important files on my home and work Network I store on network attached storage a Nas this is a device that has built-in redundancy there are six hard drives here but I can lose two of them at any given time without losing any data so one of these oopsie Daisy there's a failure it gets pulled out it gets ruined I can pop in a brand new drive and stick it back in and it will rebuild the entire architecture once again so that I have again two drives that I can lose at any point without losing a single bit of data now these are a little admittedly expensive and you don't need to go out and get a six Bay Nas to find yourself in a happy place I might even suggest you go online to Amazon and buy a 90 one terabyte SSD create a mirror of your internal boot Drive in your laptop or on your computer and you have a one-to-one copy if one of your SSD fails well you have the other SSD to rely on built-in redundancy to your first copy is a good idea so then what are the other two copies well those are your backups one of these backups must be kept off-site and it makes sense if there's a fire or flood Etc you don't want that to be all Under One Roof that's no bueno so get it far away from you as you can you also want to use two separate formats huh yeah well if you're a big business there are a lot of options for you depending on how much you're willing to spend here at snazzy Labs we actually use a storage format that's very often used by big businesses we just do it at a much smaller scale and that is this lto or linear tape open this is a little cassette filled with Magnetic Tape not that dissimilar from an 8-track or VHS what have you and I've also got a machine here that I can put the tape into and it becomes writable and readable storage to not only our Network server but also individual machines on our Network pretty cool here's the thing about lto and why it's used information density this tape right here can hold 12 terabytes of data uncompressed and 30 terabytes of data compressed and what's most impressive about it is that it does it in a package that's very tiny that's very inexpensive these tapes cost about 55 each now this is a last generation tape the newest generation they're a little bit more expensive about 130 dollars per tape but they can store 18 terabytes uncompressed and 40 terabytes compressed that is one-third the cost of a comparable hard drive but cost is just one small reason why they're actually used by big businesses the primary reason is that these if stored properly are a very good archival storage medium these can last up to 40 years when stored properly without any degradation or loss in quality and information the same cannot be said of a hard drive now while you may have experienced booting up a really old machine in the past and having an hard drive come up and everything still works they're not really guaranteed to last more than about five years on the Shelf these at 40 years are a much better better option especially when they're cheaper to boot so then why doesn't everyone use them because they're not really that practical for anything other than storage their name linear tape open seems to imply that you have to read the tape linearly and guess what you do well you can write to these pretty quickly sequentially at about 380 megabytes per second even faster than hard drive reading from them and reading in an order that's not front to back is very very time consuming it often takes minutes to locate a single file and then several minutes to recover set file it's not really practical for day-to-day storage operations it's mostly practical for oh no we lost an entire Bank of servers and now we have to offload the entire 12 terabyte tape over the course of several hours so that's pretty much why you don't see them in your home the other reason is cost while these tapes themselves are pretty cheap the readers are very much not starting at around five thousand dollars so then how do I get two different storage formats for home and personal use well I am a big believer in yes Optical media what are those it's been a while since you've seen one of these spicy circles huh well these are Blu-rays and the reason I like using Blu-rays is because they are very data dense the cheapest lowest end bargain Blu-rays you can get are still 25 gigs uncompressed and the highest end blueberries triple layer which are the same Blu-rays that are used in the 4K UHD Blu-ray format those hold up to 100 gigs uncompressed the cheapest discs is about a dollar a piece a little bit less and the nicest highest end is those are still under five dollars a piece making this a very economical way to back up furthermore the drives themselves have come down significantly in recent years these things used to be prohibitively expensive but this reads CDs and DVDs and it writes Blu-rays and it can read them and it does it in any format all the triple layers 4K UHD they'll do it all this thing is uh 70 bucks at Best Buy right now a great deal and a really affordable way to back up it's pretty simple you just pop your blank disc in I guess there's some people that might be watching this video that have never gone through this process in their whole lives that's crazy it makes a bunch of weird clicky noises that's all the high speed working so you gotta wait up and then here right inside of Mac OS it says you inserted a blank BD Blu-ray discs are natively supported from within Mac OS which is really quite cool so I can go to bdr backup which is a full drive creator that has several gigs worth of stuff inside of it I can click this little menu and say burn to disk it's then going to say which disco I want to burn to uh and at what speed I'm going to say maximum possible speed and burn and it starts to take off day days flowing at maximum speed which is not very fast you could burn DVDs and CDs really quite quickly but uh Blu-ray discs can still really only be burned at 6X Speed Most of the time this says a 16x speed on the case but uh that's read speed not right speed so uh in reality uh it doesn't really matter uh it's gonna be fine it's not the fastest format in the world but it writes faster than you might think and the best part again is it is so super cheap if you buy into the hype of a special kind of Blu-ray disc M disk these use a glassy carbon layer that promises hundreds of years of archival storage which is pretty impressive that's way longer than any other storage medium including tape and again those discs are a little bit more but we're still talking six to seven bucks at disk so this is a really economical way to back up every few months spend an hour rewriting your entire photo library to Blu-ray disc so that you can have something to fall back on in case you have to rebuild from ground zero and this is perhaps the most important part of this entire format in my opinion nobody nobody wants to steal the disc if your house gets robbed your Nas is going to get taken your computer is going to get taken your lto tape drives will get taken that stuff is valuable a CD with um photo library written on it no thief's going to take that and that's probably the best reason to use this format it's cheap it's easy it's widely available and ain't nobody want your Blu-ray it's a great option so let's talk about that off-site backup because you can kind of kill two birds with one stone here making this the most convenient primary backup ain't nobody want to be dealing with Blu-rays or lto it's not that convenient if you need to they're there but you should really have something that's better before then and that's where cloud storage obviously comes in as the true winner the problem with traditional cloud storage providers is they do not want you using their services to back up your files and this is known by the fact that they're typically pretty expensive per gigabyte and if you've ever tried to upload multiple gigs at a time even like 10 gigs at once they will massively throttle the speeds to the point where it's basically unusable so on the other end of the spectrum you've got services that specialize in backup the problem is is they don't want you sharing files with other people it's typically pretty difficult to recover a single file and they can also get expensive because they typically charge you per seat or per computer if you've got multiple computers you're paying multiple licenses see where we're going with this there's really a service that should exist in the middle and today's sponsor I think does that it's a Cronus cyber protect home office formerly a Cronus True Image and let me show you why this is cool but first we've got to install it you go to their website you click go to downloads you download the file and then once it's downloaded it just shows up in your downloads folder you open it up yeah the app opens up and you press install easy as that once you've got a Kronos cyberprotect home office installed it is extremely easy to use I've been running it for about a month and a half on my work computer which yes is just an M2 MacBook Air I keep this thing in clamshell mode underneath my desk and then use it as I would a desktop it's fun now while this app is simple I don't think that it's too basic it does everything you could want it to do I can see here that this Mac is backed up I can see how much storage is being utilized on the acronis cloud from my backup so 189 gigabytes and then I can see what that data is comprised of pictures videos audio Etc which is Handy at a glance to see if there's anything that looks off I can go into my settings tab here and choose to exclude certain folders from being uploaded if I wish which is great but my downloads folder is just filled with crap that I download from the lab old PDFs and DMG app I don't need those so I choose to exclude that you can also schedule when you would like to your backup to run and how much bandwidth it can utilize while backing up this is handy because while I back mine up at 1am every night and I'm gone if you live somewhere where bandwidth is extremely limited or you're backing up during the day being able to set a bandwidth cap is quite handy additionally cleanup acronis allows you to version which is so nice a similar products do not permit versioning and if they do they don't usually allow it for more than a few days this lets you select any number of versions that you want to retain I have it set at the default which is 20. and this is great because if you change a file like your research paper and then a few days later you're like oh crap I screwed that up that's not as good as the version I had before I can't undo it this is what that is for right you can go back and recover the file as it was before you screwed it up and then you could also choose to delete versions once they've hit a certain period of H there's also encryption encryption is really great because well it's pretty straightforward it encrypts your entire backup on the cloud so that nobody can access it either than you if we go into my activity tab we'll see that yeah it's running pretty much every night uh 1am 104 Am 103 108. it's doing my whole backup in just three four minutes no again this is versioning what it does is it looks at everything that's on the acronis cloud it looks to see if the md5 hashes are the same if the file hasn't changed over the last day then it just leaves it if you add a new file or changed its location or changed its contents then it will update itself on the acronis cloud and so what that ultimately means is your backups after you've done the initial backup only take a few minutes and Recovery is even easier if I click this tab it's going to go hey we need your encryption password because again I have chosen to encrypt my backup and all backups you should do this takes a little while to decrypt the backup but once you've done that you're going to see that there is an entire file tree but it shows not just my home folder but the entirety of the drive I mean look at this I've got my amount folder private I've this is a bunch of stuff that I don't even typically have access to unless I go spelunking down into the disk and this is really great because what it effectively means is that you are uploading an encrypted image of your local Drive in its entirety making a full system restore actually quite viable which is pretty cool I can choose which version of the backup I want to restore so we'll say yesterday I can go into Quinn Nelson I can go into desktop and hey check it out quinn.silent I don't have that anymore so let's click recover and within a few seconds it will appear on my desktop recovered as if it had never disappeared in the first place quite handy not only going to update this computer but I can also update and keep backed up other computers and other folders if you don't want to update or up excuse me upload the entirety of a drive you can just select one specific folder on a machine and it will pop up in your Cronus backup without issue and I can recover it very much the same and hey check it out that recovery file has been completed there it is on my desktop quite handy that's not all acronis uh cyber protect home office can do however if I go into disk cloning this is great I can plug in a USB hard drive or SSD and I can make a one-to-one copy bit for bit bootable version of my hard drive this is a great way to do a three two one backup because it is exactly the same as what is on the contents of this machine there is shareware for the mac and probably for Windows that allows you to do this but on the Mac at least it's quite expensive this is included in cyber protect home office and it works really really well you hit the button it says what Drive do you want me to clone your drive to and it takes a couple hours and then boom it's done and you have a perfect one-to-one copy of your Mac on an external hard drive very cool archive is not something I'm going to use frequently but it is pretty neat if you have a limited Drive size like one of those 256 gig MacBooks if you don't have room on your local disk for some of the crap that you're not choosing to upload to the acronis cloud you can basically say hey I'm going to delete these files from my local computer keep them them in the cloud but get rid of them off my machine you drag a file in it uploads it says yeah you're good to go and then you can delete them from your local Drive free and up space quite handy and then if we go into my account we can see that I'm only using a small fraction of the five terabytes that are allocated to me despite backing up two separate machines and a separate folder that might sound like the end but there's actually even a little bit more if I go into this protection tab we can see that this offers malware protection for both Windows and Mac OS it scans your files it can detect and quarantine immediate threats which currently I don't have any but it has in the past and most importantly in my opinion it detects future potential vulnerabilities not malware it's not a virus that's actively infecting your computer but something that might be a problem in the future if you don't take care of it so if I look at my vulnerability assessment which was done early this morning I can see that uh oh there were a couple effective products that are running on electron that are a critical security risk if I click on the little I here it's going to say yeah that's from Blackmagic Design Incorporated and that's because Blackmagic raw which is an application I have on this machine runs on electron but it's using an outdated version of electron for Mac OS it's one that is insecure it's one that has vulnerabilities and what this is telling me to do is hey go see if there's an update for Blackmagic raw player available that uses a more current version of electron if it does I can download and install that and that security vulnerability will go away or if I'm really worried about it I can choose to install uninstall that application altogether until Blackmagic gets their ex together and patches it this is a really great way to view in my opinion virus protection especially when you're on a Mac and it's not traditionally something that you have to worry about that often vulnerability assist assessments telling you future things that may be an issue is really in my opinion quite an excellent feature but it doesn't stop there despite being available for Mac OS and windows this app is also available on mobile for IOS and Android upon entering the acronis mobile app I am greeted with my backup from last night where it backed up all of my photos videos contacts calendars and reminders from my iPhone which is pretty cool it does one huge backup first and then after it's completed that it does little tiny backups as you add stuff in the background even if the app isn't running which is great and it makes it in my opinion a pretty viable alternative to iCloud it's a lot less money that's for sure and or if you already pay for iCloud like I do it's a great secondary off device backup not only can you backup and restore anything that is on your mobile device from the acronis mobile app but you can also browse all of your backups from your computers this is all under the same price tag this doesn't cost anything extra it's included and it does a great job so if I go into my S1 review which is that folder we backed up I can go into exports I can tap this file and in a couple seconds uh might be a while because oh nope that was pretty quick it loads and this video is playing back I can then tap the share sheet and send this to my friends or whomever I want I can save it to my photo library and more that was from my computer backed up to the acronis cloud and back to my iPhone so as you can see combining uh off-site backup and cloud storage and anti-malware all into one solution for both desktop and mobile is quite compelling and it makes acronis about 55 percent less expensive than buying all of these Services separately but the most important takeaway is that backups and hopefully you've learned this by the end of this video are important you should be doing them do not forget the three two one rule three copies in two different formats one of them located off-site.

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