So this is the first time, since May that I actually visited this blog. I can’t say that I have been off on wonderful adventures, sipping cocktails beach side during the summer, etc. Nope. Had a pleasant summer with my kids – stayed local and went to the beach, hung out around the pool and played World of Warcraft (more than I would care to admit to!). Oh, and dealt with my Windows Home Server crash. Crash??? Yeah – the system that backs up every computer in the house and is supposed to be our safety net, well crashed. Both disk drives started to fail and ALL OF MY DATA was on those drives. Pictures, videos, thousands of dollars worth of digital scrapbook supplies – all locked up on a 2 TB drive. Most people don’t even know what a TB or terabyte is. Its a shitload of storage in a nutshell. And me, Queen of the Geeks and should have known better, did not have my photos from 2010 and later backed up. Bad girl.
Sigh. I’m going to fast forward past all the gnashing of teeth, hair pulling and general despair to the good news: I recovered all of my precious memories. Every last one of them. And, I didn’t have to remortgage my house to have some astronaut recover my data in a clean room. I used two programs – Knoppix and Clonezilla and they literally saved me not only my sanity but thousands of dollars. Now data recover is not for the faint of heart nor the average computer illiterate. Both these programs are Linux based – they don’t use Windows for an operating system. Talk about stepping out of my comfort zone. The are also open source so they did not cost me a dime.
The problem with recovering data from the disk drive was that although the drive showed up in Windows, I could not explore the drive to pull the data. CloneZilla and Knoppix allowed me to do just that. Folder by folder, I transferred my data to an external hard drive (EHD) which was a slow, painful process. Thankfully, the damaged files were ones I had backed up. I’m still not even done though – my iTunes library is on that disk but I’ll get to that eventually. The irreplaceable data was my primary concern.
So now I’m going to be a good girl and come up with a back-up plan. Scary thing is, there is no foolproof method. During my hours of frantic research I came across a sobering fact: all media is destined to fail. All media…did that sink in yet? You back up to a CD or a DVD religiously? Eventually they will degrade and fail. EHD backup – FAIL. The only real safe way to safeguard your photos is to PRINT THEM OUT. Well, in light of this, I am going to create multiple backup systems – DVDs (multiple copies), EHD and an online backup system (which I need to investigate).
So that was my summer – how was yours?