At Winooski, we have an EMC retrospect backup that backs everything to hard
drives. The first time a document server backs up, it takes two to three
days. Each night after that, it takes thirty minutes. I'm looking to add a
second backup method (tape) so I can bring home a nightly tape in case the
IT room goes on fire.


Bryan Thompson
Technology Coordinator
Winooski School District
Winooski, VT 05404

On Sun, Nov 1, 2009 at 10:55 PM, Adam Provost <[log in to unmask]>wrote:

> We've discussed institutional backups on this list many times. How about
> personal backups? Here's a quick survey we've created to stir up discussions
> on how we do or don't backup our personal data at home. We came up with the
> idea of asking students and adults here on campus to chime in and also you
> folks on the School-IT list.
> Here's the link to they survey. We don't ask your name, but we do ask your
> age.
> Many thanks for your time if you choose to fill it out! Adam
> Here's the ditty I wrote up for the class to open discussions. Yes, my
> music HD did croak this weekend!
> I dropped an external hd yesterday and it has officially croaked from the
> impact. The drive had my entire music library on it! BOOO! I have a backup
> except for iTunes purchases I've made over the last year-ish though so that'
> helps. I contacted Apple, explained the dilemma and I can download my
> purchases again... a one shot deal. Full recovery. This... is a good thing.
> The whole thing got me thinking about backups for the home... again.
> Without this online data recovery from Apple I'd have lost a good bit of
> music purchases. It's about time we get this conversation underway this
> year.
> If you've been doing this media bit for awhile there's always the item of
> converting things to new locations or new formats. Cave walls, stone
> tablets, paper, reel to reel, technicolor, cassettes, VHS, Hi-8, even DAT
> tapes go the way of the location or media player changes. One form phases
> out and you are left to convert all your material to a new format. I still
> have a stack of Hi-8 videos I'm converting to digital. So what's the next
> step for digital music, photos and video?
> Here are a few pitfalls with home based backups:
> - Some folks don't backup at all or like me in the case above, forget to
> backup a certain part of their material.
> - They are not done frequently enough. You lose large chunks of data in
> between backups.
> - Backing up incrementally to dvds is cumbersome too with ever-changing
> content. Music and photos are ever changing medium for me as an example. I'd
> rather do many other things than backup data manually or sort it for backup
> and archiving purposes.
> - Backing up data to an external hard drive in your house is great... until
> something happens to your house: Auto-Bot landing, black hole, fire, etc.
> Catastrophes like this have always been a risk, especially for traditional
> picture albums, record or cd collections and the like.
> So, I looked around a bit for automated solutions to data backup and found
> this one:
> Online backups can be slow though. So I'm thinking rather than slow down my
> workstation, I automate backups to one external hard drive and then backup
> that external hd to a web service like Mozy online. Photos, videos, music
> etc. No sorting. No incremental goofing around. Easy off site data backup.
> Three copies: Local, external drive and offsite. That means at least two
> workstations though in a home and a broadband internet connection. Not a
> practical solution for some. Hmm.
> Mozy is just one of many services out there. Likely as time goes by there
> will be more.
> Then... I think along the lines of sacrificing resolution and just putting
> all my photos and video online anyway. Is preserving resolution of photos
> and video really that important for the future?
> I went the way of the web for my documents years ago. As we move toward
> higher internet bandwidth, is archiving things at home on our own drives
> even practical anymore? Are we in a transition period... a mixture of home
> hard drive and dvd tinkering and online services or would you pick one or
> the other?
> Please fill out this online survey via the link below. I've asked some IT
> folk in education to do the same. The survey will collect the data and we'll
> see what folks have to say.
> Thanks for tuning in, Adam