Phil’s Tech Tips: Back up!

Join me in welcoming Phil Stone, the author of a new feature, “Phil’s Tech Tips”, short technology-related columns.  Phil makes house calls, and helps with many of our IT issues. I’ve already learned so much from him, such as how to burn a CD, and the dangers of yanking a flash drive from a computer, rather than using the remove-safely command. He’s a wealth of information, here to help us with our technology troubles.

Backing up your data is arguably one of the most important tasks any computer owner can do, especially when working with older desktop and laptop computers. Widely overlooked by many, backups can save you significant amounts of time, money, and hassle. Anyone who has been there knows losing all your files can be devastating for both financial reasons and the sentimental value that your data may have to you.

Online cloud storage is a great way to store your files and easy enough that basic computer users should have no trouble setting up either automatic or manual back ups through easy-to-use interfaces.

Most of these services will come at a small, long-term cost, but are well worth it come crunch time. For those interested in this option, check out Livedrive, CRASHPLAN, or Google Drive, depending on your needs and the number of users and computers you have.

Many people also choose to back up their data with an external hard drive that can be physically moved at your will. The initial cost will be more expensive than cloud storage, but it’s only a one time fee as opposed to the subscription services that cloud-based companies will more than likely charge you.

External drives can be especially useful for those with small amounts of storage on their computer as they will come with a significant portion of space that can be accessed as you please. From personal experience, I’ve always found the best deals and the most information/reviews on external drives on

I’d highly recommend looking into which option works for you as recovery of data (if possible at all) is an expensive, reactive measure that can be easily taken care of before problems arise!

Phil Stone is a local computer repair technician who specializes in virus removal and maintenance. He is the owner and operator of Phil Stone Computer Repair and Virus Removal, which has been in business since 2011. Phil has been a resident of Redding all 22 years of his life. He enjoys relaxing at Whiskeytown lake, playing video games, and hanging out with friends. He can be reached at 530-524-2461, through his email at, or via his website,

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