What would you do if your computer fizzled out all of a sudden? Calmly roll out Plan B? Or run around in pure panic? Computer failure happens all the time – and suddenly. It’s smart to have a plan in place, so you’re not left without a way to continue your business.
Listen, in less than two years, I’ve had not one, but TWO laptop meltdowns, so I’ve been forced to learn a thing or two.
This last time, I was sitting at my desk being super-productive when as always, my laptop strongly suggested that I recharge. So, I did. Or tried to, but my charger wouldn’t connect to my computer. 😮
I tried all sorts of tricks, even opened up the thing (after watching several YouTube videos) but nothing worked. Even replacing parts didn’t help.
What to do? In this case, there was nothing else to do but bite the bullet and get another computer.
Thankfully, restoring my data was no hardship as I had several disaster recovery processes in place to getting back on board.
Here’s what you can do so you’re ready too (you know, just in case):
- External hard drive: This is a must. I talked about this in my previous post about file organization. Invest in one of these easy-to-use external drives. You can find them on Amazon or at any electronics store.
- Website backup: You can use a plugin like UpdraftPlus to create regular backups of your website(s) that are then sent to you via email or saved to a cloud program like Google Drive. That way, if anything happens, you can restore from the offsite backup files.
2. Use the cloud already
If you’ve resisted using cloud-based storage and programs so far, it’s time to step into the light, my friend!
Using apps like Google Drive, Dropbox, or Microsoft’s OneDrive will keep files off your hard drive and in a place where you can get to them wherever you are.
Not only that, but you can easily share your documents with a simple click of a mouse.
Embrace the cloud; you’ll feel like a boss if something (horrible) happens to your computer.
- Google Chrome Extensions: chrome extensions are mini software programs that you can use to customize your web browsing experience. They perform a specific purpose and don’t depend on content from the web, unlike regular web apps. What I like especially is that the extensions come back up once you download chrome onto a new computer. A huge time-saver!
3. Save your stuff in more than one place
So, this may seem like the most obvious step in the world, but you’ll be surprised at how many of us rely on one storage source for alarmingly important stuff (like work you do for your clients, you know, the stuff that makes you money!)
By all means, use your hard drive. However, you can also save your files to a USB drive. You could even send a copy to your client or onto the cloud for safe-keeping.
4. Organize – organize – organize
Okay, if your computer alerts you to an impending crash and you have, like, five minutes to move your files to another location, having said files stored haphazardly will just make you hopping mad.
Take the time to store your data in well-named folders so it’ll be a breeze to find them when you need to.
5. Install an antivirus
Another seemingly obvious one, right? But recently I was thinking about changing my antivirus vendor, so I asked a friend of mine which product she used, and she said – you guessed it- “Oh, I don’t have one.” Hmmm. My friend and I had to have a talk!
Many, many computer disasters come from viruses or malware. Here’s a handy guide to help you pick the best antivirus for your system
No matter what type of machine you have, a disaster recovery plan is essential in case of computer failure. Apart from day-to-day wear and tear, your computer could be lost, stolen, or fall prey to any number of natural disasters. Remember to troubleshoot common computer issues and take some time to set up your plan. You’ll be happy you did.