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New year's resolution: A backup plan

Lex Friedman | Dec. 28, 2011
You've heard the advice countless times, but it is oh so easy to ignore: You simply must back up your Mac.

Make sure your backups work

It's wonderful that you've finally started backing up, through whichever mean(s) you chose. But who's verifying that your backups are working?

Spoiler alert: No one. Unless, that is, you do it yourself. It's healthy to feel good about that and regularly pat yourself on the back for your forward-thinkingness. But imagine the soul-crushing defeat you'd feel were you to suffer massive data loss--only to discover that your backups weren't actually working. TidBits editor and Macworld senior contributor Adam Engst has even proposed an International Verify Your Backups Day, and it's a good idea. (This year you can set your "verify your data" iCal alarm for Friday, January 13.)

Verifying your backups is a snap: Find an important file or two, and make sure you can successfully restore it--and then open it. 

A flawed backup is about as useful as no backup. Verifying your backup should help you sleep easy at night.

Enjoy the new year with peace of mind

New year, new you. Specifically, a you who needn't worry about what might happen to your precious data if the unthinkable happens to your Mac's hard drive. The best backup routines require precious little maintenance (beyond Verify Your Backups Day); they just work. Before you start crooning Auld Lang Syne, get over the hurdle. Setting up a reasonable backup strategy needn't take much time or money--just a few minutes of focus. You'll thank yourself later.


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