“Always have a backup plan.”
- Mila Kunis
Last week Organize & Create Discipline taught you the importance of keeping your email inbox organized. This week we will teach you the importance of backing up your computer and email. As Mila said above…always have a backup plan!
FIND THE PERFECT DRIVE
Find a hard drive for your external backup that is the perfect size for you. We all need things to be the right size and picking out a hard drive should be no exception. Start with something that is no less than 500gig. In this day and age a 500gig hard drive will run you anywhere from $60-$100.
My personal favorites are made by Western Digital: My Book Worlds. They come in all sizes and shapes, but the most important part of the Western Digital purchase is the WD Anywhere Backup Premium edition software. Make sure this is included with your purchase. It is MAC and PC compatible.
The size of your drive will vary depending on what you will be using it for. But for casual email, documents, pictures and music this will suit you just fine. For heavier users go with 1TB version.
BACKING UP EMAIL AND FILES
People who use Gmail accounts, Yahoo, AOL, MSN all have the option to pull emails directly off the internet locally onto their computer. There are programs such as Outlook and Entourage that grab your email from your accounts and create a local file. The reason for this is to preserve your email for you.
Storing in the digital world is much different than the physical world, as the space you have to save things in is larger. But this doesn’t mean that you should save everything that is emailed or downloaded.
Whatever emails you choose to save make sure the database file is being backed up to an external drive. The pros of a program running a backup for you consistently means that the newest file will always be backed up, even if you forget to do it yourself.
FINDING YOUR EMAIL DATABASE FILE
All email database files can be manually backed up, which makes reloading your email to a crashed computer easy. To find your email database file on your PC using Windows Vista or Windows 7, here is what to do: C:\Users\username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook.
In this outlook folder you will want to backup any file that ends in .pst. If you ever lose your entire email account to a computer malfunction, never fear, you will always be able to replace this file by dragging the backup to this exact location. For Entourage users, click here .
I want to hear from YOU! Tell me what organizational questions cross your mind. Email Organize & Create Discipline at firstname.lastname@example.org and maybe your organizational challenge will be discussed next week.
Justin Klosky is a professional organizer who runs Organize & Create Discipline. Check out his Facebook page at www.facebook.com/organizeandcreatediscipline for daily updates and tips. You can also check his website for videos on how to organize your life at www.ocdexperience.com .
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