QOTD: How Often Do You Backup Your Data?

Backing up your data is supremely important. Anyone who has had his or her laptop stolen or has been victim of a hard drive crash know how terrible the experience is of trying to recover everything that you've lost.

Having regular backups protects you from those sorts of things, including times of embarrassing user errors. Sometimes even installing the wrong thing can result in a freak accident that could take down your entire system.

Earlier today we discussed Microsoft's decision not to include the backup and restore feature into Windows 7 Home Premium and how that could be a disservice to general computer users. Those who opt for the Professional or Ultimate versions will be able to utilize the built-in software, however.

Mac users have one of the best backup options with Time Machine, which automates the entire backup process and makes restoring old files and configurations simple.

Regardless of backup solutions, the process of protecting one's data is up to the user.

So, our QOTD is: how often do you backup your data?

Also share with us which piece of software and method you use to backup your data. And if you don't backup your data, please tell us why not!

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • engrpiman
    I have my data spread across several drives. I backup (move files) every month
  • aspireonelover
    engrpimanI have my data spread across several drives. I backup (move files) every monthbad decision, you should move the files ASAP, more like once everyday.

    TBH, I don't backup, and it's a bad decision. My current hard drive is about to die. I'm buying a new hard drive in 2 weeks.
  • 08nwsula
    I backup my files once when I get them and once again after I reformat one of my hdds or get a new one. I would probably go nuts and re-enact the Texas Chainsaw Massacre if I lost some of my files.
  • maxxamillion
    At home I just run a simple mirror setup on RAID.

    At work I have five 3TB RAID PACKS for external daily backups. Storage Area Network (SAN) device that gets backed up daily along with 8 servers (Active Directory, Exchange, Ect.) that are backing up daily as well. These all go to the RAID PACKS at various times after hours. RAID PACKS get rotated weekly and are stored off site at a secure facility.
  • cruiseoveride
    Every microsecond!

    RAID5 FTW!
  • IronRyan21
    Windows Home Server Backs Up all my Home PCs. Works Good, Already had to use it..... Runs on Mini ITX Atom Home Build with TB Hard Drive.
  • External hard drive and I just drag and drop my important files every month or when I receive something that is precious.
  • doomtomb
    The correct answer should be daily but unfortunately, I don't have a complicated system setup to backup my data every 24 hours or every second. I have two 640GB drives in RAID-0 which has all my data, a 1TB internal drive which I make an image of my RAID-0 setup every week or so via Windows Backup. I also have a 1TB external drive which I keep copies of most of my media files on for portability.
  • onsiteone
    i use carbonite.com so all my files are backed up continuously. but i also have an external USB drive that back up all my data daily - just in case the internet A-SPlODES one day and i can't phone home to carbonite. i don't really need RAID, since if my system dies, it only takes me about 30min to reinstall everything. all my data is on a networked server and most of my daily work is done on the cloud.
  • bonjan
    We've two laptops at home and both of them backup hourly to the Time Capsule. To avoid big disasters leaving us without all the data, we also backup the Time Machine contents monthly to an external USB drive that I keep at my workplace.