Friday, June 12, 2009

Professional Data Recovery Services
Offsite Backup Advantages

Creating backups of your data and files is a very important way of staying on top of disaster and missing data. Both small and large businesses, including individuals, always look towards a backup of information to keep them going in the face of disaster. Even though backups are a great way to keep your data safe and protected, there are some flaws with the traditional methods.

When you create backups of your data, you must store them somewhere where they can’t be damaged or someone else can access them. For businesses, offsite backup is a well known and popular way to backup files. It offers you several different advantages when compared to other ways, such as CD, DVD, external hard drives, and even servers. One of the biggest advantages to offsite backup is the fact that the backups aren’t stored in your office or business.

Offsite backup companies store your data in state of the art safes, to protect them against fire, flood, and even prying eyes. This can be extremely beneficial if unexpected things have a habit of occurring around your office.

Another great thing about offsite backups are the fact that they can be used as stores for your data. You won’t need to rely on online space, as you can easily go to the company who is storing your data and go through it anytime you wish. You can also use online space with most companies as well. You simply upload your data to their online storage area, then go back anytime you wish and view it. This is a very handy feature, similar to a hosting company.

Another benefit of offsite backup is the fact that your data will always be protected, and you won’t have to use CD or DVDs to do it. CD and DVD storage is great for individuals, although there will be quite a bit of them for most businesses. This can get somewhat costly, but more importantly, it will use a lot of space to store the backup files. They can also become damaged or lost, unlike offsite backup storage.

Offsite storage is also great if your business is in a bad area. If Mother Nature has a habit of bashing your area with floods, fires, or hurricanes, you should look into offsite backup storage immediately. They have ways to protect your information from harm, including anything Mother Nature can dish out. There is no need to worry about natural disasters, system failures, hard drive crashes, or data failure with offsite backup storage.

Even though you may not realize it, the data will be available anytime you need it. Online backup services are available anytime, day or night, and can be accessed anywhere you are. Most are easy to set up, and offers you very impressive security measures. They are also fast and very efficient, which is great for those who need to access their files immediately.

When it comes to offsite backup, you can store virtually any file you need to, such as text files, e-books, contact record, pictures, music, and anything else you can think of. The storage for online backups are virtually endless, capable of storing everything you need.

All in all, offsite backup storage is ideal for any business or corporation. You can store your data with an online offsite backup, or choose to do it physically in an offsite safe. The choice is entirely up to you. No matter which method of offsite backup you choose - your data will always be protected, and best of all - it will always be there anytime you need it.

Online Data Backups

Backing up and protecting data should be something that every business or individual strives to do. Data is very important, especially for businesses or individuals who make a living using their computers. If you have never looked into backing up your files or haven’t backed them up before, you should really look into it before it is too late.

Among the many ways to back up your files are online data backups. Online backups are great for businesses, as they will protect your data. You can think of this method as being a server and a host, as the company stores your information over the Internet. You can log in at anytime, and access your data. If your hard drive crashes, you can easily access the information you need without having to wait until your data is recovered by a specialist.

Although online data backups are great, they do have some concerns with security. Although the server is indeed encrypted, it isn’t completely safe. Hackers can get into the system if they are good enough, although it is very rare. Online back up companies make their living protecting data, which is why they are so very popular. They know what they are doing, and they can keep your data safe.

The best thing about online data backups is the fact that the information isn’t stored at your office. It doesn’t require the amount of space that CD or DVD media back up uses, nor do you have to protect it from employees who aren’t authorized to access it. The company that you select does all of the work for you, and they protect the data from prying eyes. You upload the data to their servers, then you and whomever you give the login data to are the only ones who can access it.

Before you make a final decision on whom to use for your online data backup services, you should choose one that is fully secure, has great lockout policies, and human security around their facility as well. The better companies will offer state of the art security, with no fear of anything coming in contact with your data. Even though they can tend be expensive, the last thing you want is to pay money for a service that doesn’t fully protect your information.

If you do your research and think about what each company has to offer you, you can plan accordingly. You should always look into the track record and past history of the company as well, to find out just how well they protect data. Your data and information is your life, so you’ll obviously want to choose and online back up company who takes a lot of pride in their performance - and will protect your data no matter what.

Professional Data Recovery Services

There are several data recovery software programs out there that are intended to assist you with recovering lost data. Even though they may be a big help with some cases, there are other times when they don’t do anything. In the event of software programs not being able to recover your lost data, you can count on professional services to be there for you.

As we all know, the process of data recovery is very time consuming and requires quite a bit of technical prowess in order to recover the data that has been lost. If the recovery is performed in the wrong way, it can lead to the hard drive being damaged beyond repair, and quite possibly the information that was stored on the hard drive to be lost forever.

Even though you may know quite a bit about computers and hard drives, data recovery is something that is best left to professionals. They have all the equipment and knowledge to recover files, without bringing more damage to the hard drive. They can also recover any type of file that was on your hard drive, even preview the files before they recover them. This way, they will be able to go over with you which files you wish to be recovered.

Professional services can also offer you is the emergency boot media. This methods allows you to recover any data from computers that cannot boot Windows due to a failure, virus, damage to the hard drive, or loss of data. This is ideal for times when your computer will start up, although it doesn’t want to load Windows. Normally, this method can bring everything back to your hard drive, in a matter of minutes.

Professional data recovery specialists offer a variety of services and skills to help you recover any data that you have lost. They work with hard drives on a daily basis, and know everything that they can and can’t do. Even though you may be able to do it yourself, you also have to look at the time it takes as well. Professional services have the time to put into the recovery process, as they do it for a living. Recovery takes a lot of time - which is something that many of us simply do not have.

Anytime your hard drive crashes or you experience a loss of data, you can always count on professional data recovery services to retrieve your data. Although it may take a few days or even a few weeks, you’ll get your data back. They can retrieve any or all of your files, no matter how bad the hard drive may be damaged. Even though it may appear there is no hope for your lost files - professional data recovery services can make it happen.

Recovery For Your Hard Drive

These days, computers have become a must have for nearly everyone. Even though they are great to have around and make our lives easier, they are also known to crash as well. With computers being electronic, there really is no way to make them fool proof. The hard drives that hold all of the information have mechanical parts, which means that they can crash at any given time - resulting in a loss of information, and maybe even a ruined hard drive.

In general, hard drive recovery is the process you use to restore a hard drive that has crashed, been a victim of a virus, or possibly tampered with. Keep in mind that recovery isn’t just limited to restoring everything on the hard drive, but it is also useful for finding lost files, fixing corrupt hard drives, and even locating data that you may have deleted by accident.

For many years, hard drive recovery has helped those with bad hard drives or lost information to retrieve their data. What many people aren’t aware of, in the event of data that has been deleted by accident, is the fact that some data will remain on your computer even after you may have removed it from the recycle bin. Windows doesn’t always delete files completely, but more or less puts them to the side until it has the necessary data to overwrite the files.

If data was indeed gone forever, then it wouldn’t be possible to recover. Most files, even after your hard drive crashes and the data appears to be gone, are still there on your hard drive. All it takes is someone experienced with data recovery to retrieve the information. Although data recovery is an exceptional way to retrieve lost data, there is also a downside to using it as well.

The real downside to data recovery is the fact that most information can be retrieved. If you have data on your hard drive that you don’t want anyone to view, deleting it from your hard drive doesn’t always get rid of it completely. Hackers can easily retrieve the data as well, if they are experienced enough. For this very reason, computer experts and avid computer geeks will tell you that erasing a file doesn’t always remove it from your hard drive.

The way that hard drive recovery works is by reconstructing the lost data on your hard drive. It doesn’t matter if your files were deleted by accident or the result of a crash, most data can be reconstructed and brought back to life so that you can access it. Although most crashes are due to the PC failing or a virus, there are some instances that are due to hardware failure, such as the actuator arm or platters not working properly. You won’t be able to use the hard drive if this happens, although hard drive recovery can fix the problem.

No matter what type of problem you are experiencing with your hard drive, recovery can normally fix the problem. Whether it is hardware malfunction, crash, computer virus, or accidental deletion, you can normally almost always retrieve your files. Keep in mind that you’ll normally have to take your hard drive to a specialist, either locally or by mailing it to them. Computer technicians that are experienced with data recovery can bring back your files and make your hard drive appear to be new again. This way - the loss of data won’t slow down your performance.

Software Backup For Everyone

Backing up your data with almost any electrical device is crucial to keep things intact. No computer or other electronic device is crash proof, problems can occur at any time. All computers can crash at any given time, which normally results in the loss of all data that was stored on the hard drive.

The potential for less is the ideal reason to create a backup of your software and data. How often or how much you need to backup things however, all depends on how you use your computer. If your data is very important or if you use your computer for work, you may need to create a backup of your software on a daily basis, possibly even hourly for some people.

You can use various devices and equipment to backup your data, such as DVD and CD burners, tapes, external hard drives, servers on the Internet, and so on and so forth. Although each one has pros and cons, you should always use more than one backup method if your data is extremely important to you, just to be on the safe side.

When it comes to backing up your data using software, there are five different methods you can use:
1. Full backup - A full backup will create a mirror of your hard drive, every file and folder that you currently have on your computer.
2. Differential backup - A differential backup creates the backup only for files that have been changed or upgraded.
3. Disk image - This will give you the choice of backing up your entire hard drive or just the files that you select.
4. Unattended backup - Using this method, you can set the software that will create the backup to do all of the work, even if you aren’t around.
5. Snapshot backup - A snapshot backup will mirror your hard drive, backing up the images of your files.

When you decide to get a software program to assist you with backing up your files, you should always get a program that best fits your needs. Price is also an important factor, although ease of use and overall reliability should always be the most important factors when it comes to your data.

Most programs are easy to use, so even if you have never backed up your data before, you’ll be able to do it without any problems. All you’ll need to do is load the software then follow the instructions that come up on the screen.

All in all, software backup is the best way to keep your data preserved and ready. Something can happen to your computer at any given time, which is why you should always be on the safe side and back up your data every chance you get.

The Evaluation Process Of Data Recovery

As most people already know, almost all hard drives fail due to normal use and conditions. Although it can happen at anytime, hard drive failure normally takes several years to occur, due to normal wear and tear. No matter what the case may be, you should always be fully aware of the options that are available to you, and what you should do if your hard drive fails.

Data recovery is the most useful and by far the best way to retrieve data that has been lost or deleted from a hard drive. Hard drive recovery can restore files that have been lost, no matter what the cause may be. From viruses to crashes, data recovery can restore the files on your hard drive by rebuilding the platters and the structure of the drive. Most experienced computer technicians can restore your hard drive in just a couple of days.

Before you hard drive can be rebuilt, it must be evaluated. The evaluation process will give the technician a chance to go through your hard drive, determine what caused the failure, and what they need to do to restore your data. This is a very extensive process that involving a series of steps performed by the technician.

First things first, the technician must determine if the problem is logical, physical, or possibly a combination of both. Physical failures result in hardware malfunctions, while the logical problems lie in the software. Once the technician has found the problem and the cause, he can plan out the repair process and what he needs to do to recover the information.

If the technician is able to gain access into the hard drive, he or she will then create a mirrored image of the drive and continue the process. The data structure will come next, where the technician will determine just how much of the data can be saved. This step in the evaluation can be the most time consuming, as the technician or technicians will have to go through each sector step by step and located what data can be retrieved and what data cannot be retrieved.

Once the evaluation process has been completed, the results will be given to you. The technician will normally go over everything with you, and explain the options you have available. This is where they will discuss pricing, as well as how long it will take. They will also let you know how much data can be retrieved, and what they think caused the problem. You can always get a second opinion if you choose, or go ahead and use the technician. In the rare event that no data can be retrieved, the technician will tell you that nothing can be done for your hard drive. Keep in mind that before they do anything to retrieve data, they will always contact you first to find out what you want to do.

Normally, most data can be retrieved in as little as 48 hours. The evaluation process may take a few days, as it is more time consuming and planned out than the actual data recovery process. The evaluation process can take longer depending on the parts that are needed, or if other technicians need to be involved with the process. If the technician has all of the necessary parts on hand and the experience, it normally doesn’t take long. On the other hand, if the hard drive has a lot of hardware and mechanical problems - it can take a few weeks before you find out anything.

Tips For Data Recovery

Anytime your hard drive crashes or you lose your data, you’ll need to turn to data recovery to properly restore your information. Data recovery is something most computer users are familiar with, as a majority of us have had to turn to data recovery at some point in time. Even though hard drives are becoming better and better, they are still mechanical and will always encounter problems.

The first thing to do, before any problems happen, is to always back up your data. If you create backups of your information, you’ll be well prepared in the event of a disaster. This way, even if your hard drive cannot be repaired and the data is lost forever, you’ll have the back ups to continue going as normal. If you didn’t make back ups, you’ll find the situation very traumatic when you discover that your data cannot be recovered.

Most hard drives will last for years before they start to encounter any type of malfunction or hardware problems. You can help prevent data loss by turning off your computer when it isn’t in use, or shutting it down when you hear the hard drive making an odd noise. If the hard drive starts to malfunction, letting it continue to run will only do more damage. If you shut it off immediately and take it to a specialist, you’ll have a much better chance of getting it repaired.

With natural disasters, hackers, viruses, or other problems, you won’t have the time to react. Before you know it, your hard drive will be damaged and your data will be gone. Although this can be very frustrating, data recovery can normally bring your information back. All you need to do is take the hard drive to a local specialist, then let them work their magic and show you the power of data recovery.

There are software programs out there that claim to recover lost data, although you should avoid them at all costs. Most of time, these software programs will do your hard drive more bad than good. Even though software may cost a lot less than professional data recovery services, the professional services will guarantee their work. If you turn to software and it only makes things worse - your more or less out of luck, as the software doesn’t guarantee anything.

Anytime your hard drive fails and you seem to have lost your data, you should turn to professional data recovery services immediately. They may cost you a lot of money, although they do the job right the first time. When it comes to your data, you really don’t want to take any chances - especially if you had important documents and files stored on your hard drive.

Where To Go For Data Recovery

All computer owners out there know that hard drives can and probably will fail at some point in time. Even though hard drives are built to last and withstand a lot of things, crashes are something that hard drives don’t handle well. Although the loss of data is something to be expected - data recovery ensures that your hard drive doesn’t fail you when you need it the most.

Your hard drive is very important. It stores all of your data and files, and keeps all of your important computer documents. Hard drives have rotating gears, an aperture arm, and 4 platters that store data. No matter how great a hard drive is built, failure is bound to happen one day.

When your hard drive crashes or you lose all of your information, there are things you can do to get back your data. The best way to get back your data, is to take your hard drive to a specialist in your area or send it off to a company. This way, tests can be ran on it and the specialists there can recover your data, which may require rebuilding your hard drive.

If you happen to have multiple hard drives or a RAID configuration, then all you need to do is replace the broken hard drive, and the data that you thought you lost will be regenerated among the other drives. If all of the hard drives in the RAID or mirror configuration have crashed, then you’ll need to send them off together.

Those of you who decide to on the task of fixing the hard drive yourself, should rethink about it. Repairing a hard drive takes a lot of time, effort, and research. If you have no experience with hard drives, it is definitely something that you don’t want to get into. Even if you have a neighbor who is very experienced with computers and hard drives, you should still look into taking your hard drive to a professional - and get it done right the first time.

In the rare cases where the hard drive cannot be repaired, the experts will let you know. They will tell you that there is nothing you can do, the hard drive is completely destroyed. This way, you don’t waste time or money on something that simply cannot be fixed.

Although data recovery can fix your hard drive and restore your data and information in most cases, you should still create a backup of your information. This way, you’ll have everything you need just in case something happens that can’t be fixed. It isn’t hard to create a backup, and you should always backup your data at least once a week. With the proper data backup, you can keep on going with your operations while your crashed hard drive is being repaired - which won’t slow you down a bit.

Why You Shouldn't Try Data Recovery Yourself

In the world of computers, data recovery is something we all know and rely on to recover lost of missing data. The process of data recovery is very complicated, one that you should never attempt to do yourself. Hard drives especially, are very fragile and need extra special care when they are worked on. You have to be careful with the small components inside of them, which is why only a trained specialist should be attempting data recovery.

When you first take your hard drive to a specialist, they will perform an evaluation then get back to you and tell you the problem, as well as the cost. When most people get their price quote, they immediately think the price is too high. As this happens, the individual will decide to try their own data recovery. This isn’t the smartest idea, as it normally results in your data being lost forever. In most cases, where individuals attempt data recovery themselves, the data is so far gone that even the best data recovery specialist can’t bring it back.

When the hard drive crashes and data cannot be accessed, most people will think about using a disk repair utility. This isn’t a good idea, as the software will normally write to the disk, causing the data that is currently stored to be overwritten. These types of software programs can be very complex, and in most cases, won’t fix the problem. They should be avoided at all costs, for the simple fact that they won’t bring back your data - they will only make things worse.

Another common mistake people make, that should never be attempted, is to open up the hard drive and try to rebuilt it. Hard drives are full of very delicate components, many of which are very small, and very fragile. The platters are the most sensitive inside of the hard drive, as they are small and contain a layer of magnetized material. This material is very fragile, and sensitive to debris, dust, and especially your fingerprints.

If you don’t know how to handle the platters, you can easily scratch their surface, which could indeed damage them forever. There is a spindle inside of the drive, which constantly moves the platters. A motor is there as well, which determines the speed that the platters revolve. The platters store data for the entire drive, which is accessed by an actuator arm. When the hard drive is in operation, the platters and the actuator arm move at very fast speeds, which is why everything has to be perfect.

If you go to tamper with the drive and attempt to rebuild it yourself, you’ll more than likely damage something. The technicians that work with data recovery on a daily basis are experts with hard drives, and know exactly how to handle the devices. They know how to handle the platters, the actuator arm, and how to put everything back in a complete working fashion.

Some people out there have been told that hitting or even dropping a hard drive can fix common hardware problems. This is not the case, as hard drives can easily break if they physically abused in any way. The interior components are very fragile and do not react well at all to any type of abuse or physical mistreating.

Whenever something happens to your hard drive and you lose your data, you should always leave it to the data recovery experts. Companies who specialize in data recovery can recover your data, and do it the right way - which can save you time and money in the long run.

How To Back Up Files Correctly
Photo Recovery

Digital photographs are something that are important to all of us. Most of the pictures we take happen once in a lifetime, which is why they are so very important. From your child’s first steps to pictures of your family, photographs are very important. As important as they are, nothing is worse than losing them. This can be very traumatic and frustrating, especially knowing that you’ll never to capture the picture again.

Even though it may appear that the camera malfunctioned, all hope isn’t completely lost. There are ways that you can recover your digital photographs, even though you may not be aware of it. Most digital camera’s for instance, use smart cards that will store the information. To be on the safe side, you should always safe your photographs to your card, and transfer them to your computer the first chance you get - then back them up to a CD or DVD.

Sometimes, when you have your photographs on your computer, you may move them to the recycle bin and not even realize it. You can always correct this, by right mouse clicking the recycle bin then choosing to open it up. If the pictures are there, simply drag them to your desktop or right click them and choose restore. This will put them back in the location they were in before they were moved to the recycle bin.

There are other instances where your photographs aren’t this easy to recover. If the card in your camera has become corrupted or if your camera has experienced hardware problems, then it won’t be so easy to recover your pictures. If this is the case, you should always look towards software or professional repairmen. There is software out there that is designed for most types of digital camera problems, and it can normally recover your pictures in the case of malfunction.

Most services and software can recover almost all files that you have on your camera, from JPEG pictures to video files. Most people transfer their pictures to their computer as soon as they can, which can be recovered using data recovery methods. On the other hand, those who don’t, will need a professional to take a look at the camera. If you don’t waste any time and seek a professional immediately, your pictures can normally be recovered.

Digital cameras are something that most of us own these days, as they take professional quality photos. Anytime that it appears you have lost your pictures, you can turn to software and professional recovery services to get your pictures back. Your digital photographs are very important, which is why you’ll want to take care of them. Mistakes and disasters do happen though - which is why there are recovery services.

External Hard Drive Recovery

You can store your computer data in several different ways. Data can be stored on removable disks, hard drives, CDs, DVDs, and other types of media. Even though there are several ways that you can store your data, at some point in time the electronic or mechanical device is bound to break down, resulting in a loss of data. Even though the device may work good for years, it can always break down when you least expect it, with no way to avoid it.

Hard drives are the most common way to store data, although they are mechanical devices and can break down or crash at any time. When they crash, you’ll normally lose all of your data, which can put you in quite a bind. To be on the safe side and keep yourself protected, you should always have a backup plan, such as an external hard drive.

An external hard drive is very handy to have around. You can store any type of file on it, including music and pictures. Most people use them for videos, as they can store a lot of videos. You can get them in many different sizes, going as high as 500 GB. If you have a lot of video on your computer that is taking up a lot of much needed space, you can easily transfer it to an external hard drive and free up some of your space.

On the data recovery side of things, external hard drives are a great solution. You can back up your entire hard drive on them, even a mirror image. Most external drives are FireWire or USB compatible and will work with most computers. To use an external drive all you need to do is connect it to your computer. Then, using the software that came with the device, you can begin to transfer your data and files.

If you have a big hard drive, you’ll want to get a bigger external hard drive. If you are transferring your entire internal hard drive to the external drive, it may take you a few minutes. You can also add files and such along the way as well, if you get newer files to add. Backing up your entire hard drive to an external drive is a very smart idea, especially if your area gets a lot of electrical storms.

Once you have backed up all of your data to an external hard drive, you can rest assured that your information will be there when you need it. External drives don’t crash, for the simple fact that they aren’t in use until you need them. They will last you many years as well, which makes them great for pictures and other precious files. If you own a business, you may find them to the best way to store your business documents and other files that relate to your company.

All in all, external hard drives are the perfect way to create a back up of your data. Once you have your data backed up, you’ll be ready for anything that happens to your internal hard drive. In the event of a crash, you can use your external hard drive and transfer the data back to your hard drive, and be back up and running in no time at all. External hard drives take all of the guess work out of the data recovery process - and may also save you the trouble of having to send your hard drive off to be repaired.

Help With Data Recovery

If you’ve had something bad happen to your hard drive and find yourself looking for data recovery help, your probably in a hurry, not wanted to listen to hype or schemes. Many individuals who have experienced the loss of their data cannot wait, and need to have their data now. Businesses on the other hand, need to have their data up and working so that they can continue to carry out their normal day to day operations.

Anytime you experience problems with your hard drive, you can count on data recovery to recover your data. There are a few options available, the first being recovery specialists that can actually come to you. They will look at your computer and your hard drive, and first determine what caused the hard drive to malfunction. Data recovery specialists are highly skilled computer technicians, and know the hard drive inside and out.

Good specialists are those who can be there anytime you call. You don’t want someone who isn’t reliable, especially if you are looking to establish a relationship. If the technician is able to be there immediately, he or she is showing that they are dependable. In the event of data loss or hard drive failure, you’ll want someone who doesn’t waste any time at all.

Another option available to you is software programs. These programs are great to use, although they must be used before you problem. You can’t use them after the disaster has happened, as there is nothing there to install it to. If you install the program before hand and keep it installed, it can help you after the disaster. Most programs keep your previous data and information on file, so just in case something does happen to your hard drive, it will be available

In the event of a hard drive failure, virus, or natural disaster, there are options that you can use to recover your data. The most popular are data recovery technicians and data recovery software. For businesses and corporations, technicians are the preferred way to go. Technicians can recover your files, even rebuild your hard drive if they need to. In the event of a hardware problem, the software won’t be able to do much for you.

Anytime you need help with data recovery, you should always look towards a specialist to help you. They can fix most problems, and more importantly - restore your precious data. No matter where you live, there should be specialists close by who are always on call. Most charge very reasonable prices, and will come to you in the event of an emergency. When you compare specialists to software - the specialists are by far the best option for helping you with your data recovery.

How To Back Up Files Correctly

Throughout the world of computers, it’s simply amazing just how many people are scared to death of losing their data. Most of those who are scared, don’t give a second thought to backing up their data. Even though the thought may be the same, most people are worried more about losing their data than actually backing it up - which can prove to be a downfall in the face of disaster.

The process of backing up files is done by using servers, floppy disks, CD, DVD, external hard drives, or other methods to keep the data protected. This way, when something happens to your hard drive and you lose your information, you’ll have the information backed up so that you can easily access it again. Data that is important, such as tax files or business records should always be backed up, to ensure that nothing happens to it.

If you are using Windows as your operating system, it will be a lot easier to back up your files. Windows XP has a back up facility in it, so that it can make things a lot easier when you create your backups. If data that is stored on hard drives with XP becomes lost, Windows will immediately fetch the file from another drive or area where it has been stored as a back up. This is a very useful technique, although it still has to be practiced to ensure that you understand how it works. Although it may be very useful, it isn’t as safe as other options.

In order to back up your data and programs in a safe and efficient manner, you’ll need to use some of the more reliable methods, such as external hard drives or servers. Offsite backups are great as well, as the data you backup isn’t left around your office, it is instead entrusted with a company who will ensure that it stays protected.

No matter which method or methods you have decided to use for backing up your data, you’ll be happy to know that they are all easy to use. CD and DVD backups are easy to create, all you need is the software installed on your computer to create the backups with. Servers are easy to use as well, all you have to do is upload your data to a server, then log into the server anytime you need to have access to the data.

All in all, creating backups of your data and information is the perfect way to ensure that you always have it in the event of a disaster. Disasters can happen at any time, which is why you should always back up your data anytime you have something new or something that you haven’t backed up yet.

Importance Of Recovery Planning

Disasters are common in the world today, from nature to car wrecks. In the computer industry, disasters aren’t any different. They can come in the form of an office fire, computer crashes, hard drive failure, missing IT documents, stolen hardware, and many other forms. Disasters can be very traumatic and stressful, although there are actions that you can take.

Even though disasters can occur at any time, recovery planning doesn’t cross the mind of business owners or individuals. Most just carry out their normal day to day routines, never aware of what could result from a disaster. Then, when disaster does strike, most tend to freak out and wonder just what they can do to fix the situation at hand.

If you are prepared for a disaster or hard drive failure, then your business will be able to deal with anything that happens. The first step in planning and preparing for disaster is to analyze your business or operations. You should determine how often your systems go down, and how you can manage operations without the equipment. You should also find out how long it would take you to fix the equipment, and what your business can do to make ends meet when the equipment is unavailable.

Something else you’ll need to do is identify the risks of possible disaster. This can include computer failure, loss of power, hardware problems, etc. You should always include the causes as well as the solution in your plans. If your office suffers from disaster and cannot be used for a period of time, you should always have another location that you can go to continue your business.

In the event of disaster, you should always have a dedicated team that will work on fixing any problems. This team should be responsible for your recovery plan and hold regular meetings to make sure that everything is accurate. Then, if disaster should strike, your team should be well enough prepared to take care of anything that comes your way.

On a frequent basis, you should create backups of your IT systems and test the backups that you have created. Always make sure that the backups you made are in a safe place, and out of the way of harm. You should also check with your disaster recovery team as well, and make sure that they have the location of your backups noted in their recovery plans.

One of the most important aspects of recovery and disaster planning is to keep an up to date inventory on all of your equipment and material. You should always stay on top of this, to make sure that you can easily identify what you have and how to go about replacing equipment whenever something happens. If you keep a record of your suppliers and their phone numbers, you can have them with you for easy access in the event of an emergency.

Even though it may be easier to document all of your recover plans on your computer, you should also record them on paper as well. Disasters can render your computers useless, which would it very hard to access plans that are stored on your IT systems. If you have them noted on paper as well, you can access them without any problems.

Above everything else, you should always think about the possible disasters that can occur at any time and how to be prepared for them. If you think about things and plan things out before hand, you’ll find that you can handle any type of disaster. This way - a disaster doesn’t have to stop you from carrying out your normal day to day operations.

Knowing Your Data Is Safe

All companies of today make great use of the technology available to them and rely on their data. Most businesses however, don’t have the budget to invest in network storage or large servers, which is what the bigger companies use to transfer information and create a backup of the information they rely on to carry out their operations.

Smaller businesses have a limited budget. When most encounter a disaster they never seem to recover, normally going out of business. Past disasters such as 9/11 or the dreaded hurricane have showed the importance of backups and disaster planning. Companies that thought things out and protected their data survived these disasters, while those that didn’t went out of business.

There are several ways that you can protect your data and keep it safe. One of the most popular and easiest ways to protect your data is with a server. Servers are great for both large and small businesses, and protection the data for your business. They can tend to get expensive though, with the most popular server, Microsoft, starting out around $3,000.

Unlike other options, servers provide you with a safe and secure system to store all of your corporate data. You can set the permission of your files to prevent any unauthorized access, to keep your files safe. When using servers, most of the loss comes from either accidental deletion or employees that are upset with corporate management and decide to get into the server and erase files.

When using a server, your data will be stored in one central location, and not spread around over different computers in your network. Servers are very user friendly, and keep your files neat and tidy - in one location. This way you don’t have to go looking all over the place for your data, you can look in the server and find everything you need.

Another way to keep your data safe is with CDs, DVDs, and even external hard drives. If you are using any of these methods, you should always do a backup of your information at the end of every day. With disasters being completely unpredictable, backing things up every day will ensure that you are protected if something should occur.

If you are backing things up to CD or DVD media, you should always put the discs in a safe and secure location, preferably a fireproof safe. This way, if the office should catch on fire, you’ll have your backup discs protected. You should always add your new backups to the safe at the end of every working day, so you’ll have them tomorrow if you need them.

You can also store your data and information offsite as well. This is a highly recommended option, as you pay a flat monthly fee and a company stores your information. Most have secure vaults and servers for your data, which ensures protection from unauthorized accidents or hazards. You don’t need to worry about your data when using these services, as they will do the protection for you.

No matter which method you use for protecting your information, you should always make sure that you have a plan. Corporate data is very important and essential to success, which is why you should look into immediately if you don’t have a plan already. If you know your data is safe and protected from hazards and unauthorized access - you’ll have the peace of mind in knowing that your data will be there each and every time you need it.

Losing Your Mind With Data Recovery

For nearly all computer users, losing data can be a very traumatic experience. If you use your computer for a business or for other important matters, it can be very stressful and very traumatic to lose everything you have worked months, and possibly even years to build.

Even though you may back up your data on a periodic basis, you’ll still need to check the backup to make sure that everything works. Nothing can be worse than backing something up, only to find months later that something went wrong.

No matter who you are, or what business you work for, data loss can happen. Computers are great, although they aren’t perfect. Over time, your hard drive can crash or malfunction, which will result in the loss of everything you have stored on your computer.

Whenever this happens to you, it’s always a good thing there’s data recovery. Without data recovery, it wouldn’t be possible to retrieve files, recover information, or simply get back to the data you spent years building.

To recover your data, you’ll need to send it off to a company that specializes in data recovery. They will need to run some tests on it and see what shape it is in, how bad it is damaged, and just what needs to be done to recover your data.

This process will normally take around a week or so, all depending on the problem. It can be quite expensive as well, depending on where you send it. Keep in mind though - the more experience the data recovery technicians have, the higher the price will be.

Those that are more expensive are great if you have the money to spare, for the simple fact that they are experts and are more apt at saving your data and information. The cheaper data recovery companies are great as well, although larger companies and those with extremely important data will want to put their trust in the best that money can buy.

With most cases, companies can rebuild the hard drive, providing the drive isn’t totally corrupted. In cases where the hard drive is totally gone, it will need to be rebuilt, which can take quite a bit of time. No matter what the situation may be, data recovery experts can normally find a solution to recover your data.

At some point in time, everyone will experience some type of hard drive crash or malfunction that will result in the loss of data. When this happens to you, you shouldn’t get all shook up or alarmed, you should instead make sure that you are prepared to always expect the unexpected.

Even though your data can normally be recovered, you should still back up everything on a weekly basis just to be on the safe side. This way, when your hard drive is sent off to be repaired, you’ll have the information you need backed up to keep on going as normal.

To be on the safe side, you should keep your most important documents and files stored on a CD, by using a CD burner and CD-R media. This is by far the cheapest and easiest way to back up your data, and it will keep you more than prepared for when your hard drive malfunctions and crashes when you least expect it.

If you prepare yourself by backing up your data, a hard drive malfunction won’t be as traumatic on you. You should always be prepared, and ready just in case something happens. Computers are the wave of the future - although they aren’t perfect by any means.

Not Too Late For Data Recovery

As most of us already know, recovering data that is lost or damaged is known as data recovery. Data recovery can save a majority of your data information, in the form of hard drives, zip disks, CDs, DVDs, and other means of storage. Data recovery is very common these days, as it can help you get back on track after your hard drive crash or other means of destruction to your data.

On the professional side of things, there are a lot of companies out there who excel in data recovery. They have technicians who are experts in recovering your data, and spend a majority of their time working on hard drives. Recovering the information from a hard drive can be a very time consuming process, all depending on just how bad the drive has been damaged. If the hard drive is damaged physical or the sectors have been damaged, some of the data that was stored on it may be lost forever.

If you take immediate action and seek a repair service for your hard drive, you just may be able to save everything. In the result of a crash, virus, accidental deletion, or other disaster, you shouldn’t waste any time at all. You should always look into a company, preferably local, that can help you with your hard drive. The company will first do an evaluation on the hard drive, then contact you and discuss what options you have available with you.

To safely and efficiently recover your data using software, companies have a few choices they can use. Below, you’ll find some software examples that companies use to recover lost data on hard drives.

FIRE recovery
FIRE is a bootable program that can immediately take action with data recovery. It can also assist with virus scans, incident response, and forensic analysis. FIRE is a very common program, widely used by data recovery specialists around the world.

LDE recovery
Known as Linux Disc Editor, the LDE method of recovery was originally created for recovering lost files in Linux. It is an older method of software and data recovery, which proved to be very beneficial to those who used Linux.

NT recovery
The software for NT data recovery provides the proper read access for hard drives that are set up with NTFS in the Windows or MS DOS environment. This software is among the most popular for data recovery technicians, allowing them to copy files from NTFS to FAT volumes.

The above examples are all but a few among the software recovery methods. Software recovery can work with most hard drives, if they aren’t too badly damaged. If the hard drive has been damaged by flood, fire, or other physical damage, it will probably need to be rebuilt. Again, if you don’t waste in time seeking a technician, you may be able to get everything fixed. Rebuilding the hard drive will take quite a bit of time, as the technician will have to go through every inch of the drive and replace the parts that have been damaged.

As important as your data is, it’s always in your best interest to get on the ball and don’t let any time be wasted. Time is always of the essence, especially when it comes to recovering all of your data and information. Time will always prove to be the ultimate and deciding factor with your information - which is why you shouldn’t let one precious second be wasted whenever something happens to your hard drive.

All About Data Recovery
All About Data Recovery

At some point in time, everyone who owns a computer will experience the trials and tribulations of hard drive failure. The reasons behind it vary, and could include everything from a human error to damages resulting from flood or water. Viruses can play a role as well, along with many other factors. For many years, the need to recover data that has been lost or destroyed has made data recovery such a very valuable asset.

Almost all hard drives can be recovered. Normally, if the drive is making a ticking or a scratching noise, you can use certain software programs to recover the data. Sometimes, due to age or bad parts, the aperture arm in the hard drive can fail, or the platters can become damaged and lose the data that they hold. If you can’t recover the information with software, you’ll need to send the hard drive off and have it either rebuilt or have technicians recover your data.

Data recovery is always an option, from hard drives that are 2 GB in size to the largest of over 300 GB or more of data. No matter what size hard drive you have, the data can generally be recovered. Keep in mind that if you’ve had a computer crash, you’ll need to send the hard drive off to have the data recovered by technicians.

One of the key benefits of data recovery is the fact that information can also be retrieved from the recycle bin as well. Partition recovery, and even information that has been lost somewhere on the disk can be retrieved as well. Even though it may seem like your data is gone forever - the technicians that specialize in data recovery can retrieve it.

From Windows to Mac, everything can be recovered. There are different filing structures and formats, including NTFS and FAT32. These are common Windows filing structures, and hold all of the information for your hard.

Those of you who have multiple hard drives in your computer, can rest assured that RAID configurations can also be recovered. If a single hard drive on the RAID configuration fails, the RAID setup will absorb the blow and there won’t be a loss of data. On the other hand, if the entire RAID configuration crashes, it will crash big time. Whenever this happens, you’ll need to send it off and have technicians restore both the RAID hardware and software.

Anytime your hard drive happens to crash or malfunction, data recovery is there to help you get back your files. Whether they are personally files or very important files that are need for business - you can put your trust in data recovery and know that you’ll get everything the back the way it was.

Backing It Up With A CD Rom

With the technical age upon us, computers are far more important now than they have ever been in the past. A lot is done on the computer these days, from paying bills to earning a living. Therefore, the data that you have on your computer is very important.

Among the data found on your computer, you may have precious pictures and memories that you wouldn’t dream of losing. No matter how sophisticated computers get, they will still crash, or encounter other problems that can result in a loss of data. For that reason, a backup of your data is very important.

While there are several ways that you can go about backing up your data, a CD Rom is by far the easiest and quickly becoming the most popular as well. Like other backup methods, the CD Rom does have it’s faults, although it has more pros to offer you than cons.

One of the best facts about CD Rom backups are the fact that your disc will be stored on CDs. The standard CD-R data disc can hold up to 700 MB of data, which is a lot of files. You can store pictures, documents, software, programs, and virtually anything else that you can think of to a CD - including entire folders that are full of files and data.

If you use CD-RW media, which are also known as re-writable discs, you’ll be able to continue adding data until the disc is full. You can also re-write over existing data on these discs as well, which makes them ideal for those who constantly update documents that they need to hold onto.

If you are using the standard CD-R data disks, you won’t be able to add more data to them. Once you have added the information to your disk, that’s it. This is a great choice if you want to keep the data as is, and know without a shadow of a doubt that it is going to be backed up whenever you need it.

With the prices of CD burners and CDs being so cheap these days, anyone can afford them. They don’t cost near as much as they did years ago, which is why they are so popular when it comes to backing up your data. If you own a newer computer, chances are that a CD burner was included with it. If you have an older computer, you can buy a CD burner and some discs for a little of nothing.

The best thing about backing up data with CDs is the fact that they are more reliable than floppy discs, easier to access than an online backup, and they will last you a lifetime. If you have important data that needs to be backed up, you can rest assured that a CD-Rom is an excellent way to back up your information.

Backup Data On Your Laptop

If you were to look at past statistics regarding the information that has been lost in regards to laptop computers, you would find yourself amazed. Even though this information can be astounding, many of us still don’t take the time to back up the information on our laptops.

To put it in simple terms, nothing in the computer industry is fool proof. Hard drives can crash, the laptop can get stolen, or it can even be dropped and rendered useless. To ensure that we are never left without our precious data, we should always create a backup of our information.

There is no mistaken the fact that over a million laptops have been stolen over the years in the United States alone. Anytime a laptop is stolen, chances are that it won’t be recovered. If the information wasn’t backed up, then the owner will be left with no laptop - but more importantly - no backed up data either.

Just like you can with desktop computers, you can also create a backup of the data on your laptop as well. You can use online services, back it up remotely, or use several other methods to ensure that you keep all of your data. Preserving your data is something you should really look into, especially if you have business material on your laptop.

The best way to go about backing up your data and files is to burn them to a data CD. Data CDs can hold up to 700 MB (Mega Bytes) of data, which means a lot of files. To back things up this way, all you need is a CD/RW burner in your laptop, which most of the newer ones come with.

The only drawback to laptops is the fact that they don’t offer near as much storage or security measures as a desktop PC. Desktop computers have a lot more power, and they can also do things (including backups) in a fraction of the time.

The laptop computer was designed for on the go use, which is the main reason why people don’t really think about backing up their data. When the thought finally does come to mind, it is normally too late to do anything about it.

As mentioned above, the easiest and quickest way to backup your laptop data is to use an online backup service. Depending on your connection to the Internet, it can take anywhere from several minutes to several hours. Although it may take you a little bit of time, you’ll have the satisfaction in knowing that your data is there if something should happen.

Whether it’s for your business or personal use, you can’t go wrong backing up your data. You should always create a backup of your data at least once a month, even more than that if you have a lot of important information that you add to your laptop on a frequent basis.

Backup Data Properly

Computer data can be very important to us, especially those of us who make a living on the computer. Over the last several years, the computer has grown on all of us, making our lives so much easier. For that very reason, it’s easy to tell that if we lost our computer data, it would completely destroy a majority of us.

Losing data can be an overwhelming thought to say the least. Computers store data, although machines have been known to fail. Even though the computer has become a lot more reliable over the years, it is virtually impossible to prevent computers from losing data.

You don’t need to take this lying down through, as you can indeed fight back. The ideal way to ensure that you never lose your precious data, is to back it up and keep backing it up. You should back up your computer data at least once a week, with once per day being the recommended way to do it.

In the past, and even some today, the floppy disc is the main method used to back up computer data. Even though they store a small amount of data, they are easy to access, easy to use, and nearly every computer has one.

Those of you who are looking to take things to the next level should look into backing up your entire hard drive. Backing up your entire hard drive is something that everyone should do, as it is indeed one of the best and most reliable ways to backup your computer.

When you create a backup of your entire hard drive, it will copy all of your information, so if something happens you’ll always have your data. Doing a full backup of your hard drive is great, although it can be very time consuming. To make matters worse, it is recommended that you create a backup at least once a week. On the other hand, if what you have on your computer is very important, you’ll find it more than worth the effort and time needed to back things up.

Another way you can back up your data, programs, and files, is to burn them directly to a data CD or DVD. This way, you can select which files or folders you want to keep. If you use CD/RW or DVD/RW disks, you can continue to add information to them when you create a backup. If you don’t use the RW (re-writable) media, then you won’t be able to go back and add more information to the disc.

Burning data directly to discs are the method of backup that most people are using these days, although backing up the entire hard drive is the preferred way of backing up your data. If you plan to use discs, you’ll need either a CD or DVD burner, which you can get for a great price these days. The discs are cheap as well, which only makes this method of backing things up that much better.

Whether it’s for your business or for personal reasons, you can’t go wrong backing up your data. You should always strive to back things up properly, as this will ensure that the data will always be there when you need it. This way, if you computer happens to crash or you lose everything on your hard drive, you’ll always have your backup files to go back to. This in itself can save you a lot of time, effort, and quite possibly even money - just for the simple fact that the files are all but a copy away to restore.

Computer Diagnostics

The diagnostics that are associated with computers can help to identify any problem or failure that computers show when they are having problems. Diagnostics are used to test out the computer system, which includes both the BIOS and memory, software, and even the hardware that is attached to the computer.

The most common types of problems will occur when your computer is down to very low resources, which can either be a low amount of RAM, or a low disk space. These conditions are very common, and generally result in your computer running very slow. This can easily be fixed, all you have to do is defrag your hard drive, and get rid of some programs and files that you no longer use or need.

Almost all types of computer diagnostic software can find and fix just about any problem that you are having. It normally starts off with a BIOS examination, and goes on from there. PC diagnostics
software can determine a lot from the BIOS, from the common settings to those that have a major impact on both boot up and performance.

No matter what you do, you should never modify or tamper with the BIOS settings, as it can lead to serious problems. If you do plan to modify or mess with your BIOS, you should always create a backup first, just in case something goes wrong. The BIOS settings can be very tricky, although they are responsible for a lot to do with your computer. If you have never been in the BIOS before, you really shouldn’t be modifying anything inside of it.

Depending on the diagnostics program that you are using, there will be several different features available. Right now, two of the most popular are Norton Systemworks and PC Doctor. Both of these programs offer full diagnostics software, good for fixing just about any software related computer program you can imagine.

Once you run the program, you’ll be able to select the diagnostic test that you are planning to run. Some offer you a full system scan, which will scan your entire computer and then display any problems that you having. After displaying any problems, the software will normally give you an option to go ahead and fix it. As long as the problem is nothing serious, the diagnostic software can generally fix it.

The more complicated problems, such as hardware failures or hard drive crashes, are a totally different story. They will require a technician who is very experienced, that can rebuild the hardware. Diagnostic software can report hardware problems to you, although most of the time it is unable to fix it.

There are other computer diagnostic software that you run after starting the computer or rebooting, that will check everything from BIOS. These types are great, although the types such as Norton and PC Doctor are by far superior. They offer far more features, including defragment, cache cleaner, and the option to delete your temporary Internet files. These features are great to have, especially if you aren’t the technical type.

For more reasons than one, computer diagnostic software is the ideal way to find and prevent problems with your computer. Norton Systemworks offers you Ghost as well, which is the perfect way to back up your data. You can back up certain files, or just go ahead and back up your entire hard drive. Systemworks and Ghost are very easy to use, even if you are completely new to computers. For everything they offer you - computer diagnostic programs are the ideal way to prevent problems before they happen.

Cooling Your Hard Drive

For several different reasons, storage is a very important part of a computer. These days, computers do far more than they ever have in the past. From businesses to family photo’s, storage is the ideal way to keep documents on your computer. The most popular method of storage is the hard disk drive, which we all count on for keeping our data safe.

Even though the hard drive stores data, it isn’t perfect by any means. Hard drive failure is very common with all computers, with no real way to prevent it. Although there are several different reasons why a hard drive can fail, the most common is overheating. Viruses and crashes are common as well, along with theft and accidental deletion.

With the older style and mechanics of hard drives, the RPM speed was low, meaning that the drives wouldn’t overheat. The hard drives we use now days, have speeds between 7,200 and 10,000 RPM, meaning that they can get quite hot when they start working. Computers of this day and age come with fans to cool everything down, with most hard drives including temperature sensors as well, so you can keep track of just how hot your hard drive becomes.

With hard drives today, overheating is a very common problem. The faster hard drives come with speeds of 10,000 RPM, which can make the temperature soar above 70 degrees F, really heating things up inside the drive. The mechanics on the inside are built to withstand the heat, although if things become too hot, you’ll encounter problems. If a drive becomes too hot and ends up losing the data, it may be next to impossible to retrieve the information - no matter how good your data recovery specialists may be.

One area that suffers from the drive overheating is the platters, which are magnetic media. Platters are what carry the data throughout the hard drive. Platters are constructed from optical glass, aluminum, or ceramic and normally coated with a layer of magnetic material. Once the hard drive begins to heat up, the platters will start to expand, which changes their size. When this happens, the magnetic surface on the platters will get destroyed, which results in a loss of data. If the physical area of the platters are damaged, it will result in unreadable sectors.

Other areas of the hard drive that can be damaged due to overheating are the read and write heads, head actuator, and the controller chip. Hard drives are very sophisticated pieces of hardware, and can’t handle overheating. The read and write heads are a common example, as they can easily render the drive useless if they become damaged. If they get too hot, they don’t make any contact with media, which pretty much stops the flow of transfer from information to the computer.

To prevent your hard drive from overheating, you should always make sure that it is cooled properly and well ventilated. You can always get additional fans and coolers, which will improve both ventilation and the flow of air in your computer. You can buy fans and coolers at very affordable prices, which makes them an ideal investment for keeping your hard drive or hard drives cool.

You can also get software that monitors the temperature of your hard drive as well. Whether it’s software, or additional fans, you should always ensure that your hard drives are kept cool. By keeping them cool, you’ll greatly reduce the amount of crashes. You’ll also increase the stability of your hard drive as well, which will make your entire computer perform much better.

Data Recovery Procedures

No matter who you are, where you work, or what type of computer you use - your computer data is always as risk. With viruses, power surges, thunderstorms, natural disasters, human mistakes, and hackers around, the threats are always real. To be on the safe side, you’ll need to back up your files and keep doing it on a regular basis. In the event of your hard drive failing, you’ll need data recovery - which is the only option available.

Before you travel down that long road of data recovery, there are some things to keep in mind. If you are using your computer and a program starts to act funny, you should shut things down immediately. You may also hear some very odd sounds as well, which is the first sign that your hard driving is working overtime. If you shut your computer down immediately at this point, you may prevent data loss from happening. If you don’t shut your computer down and allow the failing hard drive to continue running, it is only a matter of time before it destroys itself - which will ultimately result in the loss of data.

If this happens, and you lose all of your data, you should never try to fix the hard drive yourself unless you know exactly what to do. At this stage, professional data recovery services aren’t just a luxury - they are something you must have. The process for data recovery is time consuming, and requires both tools and a clean work environment. Trying to repair a hard drive on your own is very challenging, and could end up making matters far worse if you don’t know what you are doing.

Even though there are software out there for data recovery, you shouldn’t use them unless you know what you are doing. With most hard drive problems being very intricate, software can do more harm than good. Even though companies may claim that their software will fix the problem and, retrieve your data, you should always use caution and simply avoid the use of do it yourself software.

To be on the safe side with your hard drive and retrieve the data that you lost, you should always turn to a local data recovery service. This way, you’ll know that your hard drive is in good hands and it will be fixed the right way. Professional services can fix nearly any hard drive problem, and recover any type of data. In some cases, your hard drive may be beyond repair, even for professional data recovery specialists. If this happens, you should be prepared to buy a new hard drive - and count your blessings that you thought to back up your data in advance.

Dealing With The Loss Of Data

Data loss is something that can be very traumatic. Whether it’s a business with important files and documents, or an individual with precious pictures and videos, losing data can be a very traumatic and stressful situation. If you’ve never experienced hard drive failure or losing data before, it can indeed be a situation where you find yourself wondering what to do.

No matter what you happens, you shouldn’t stress out or let the situation get the best of you. Although computers are great to have and hard drives work very well for storage, they are both machinery and are bound to fail at some point in time. No matter how sophisticated hard drives get, they will never be able to completely avoid crashes or failure.

In most cases, your data can be recovered, which is always good news. When your hard drive first crashes or you notice that your data is missing, you should immediately take it to a local specialist. The specialist will be able to evaluate your hard drive, find out what the problem is, and then tell you. The evaluation process could take anywhere from 1 day to a couple of weeks, so you should always prepare yourself for anything.

Once the hard drive has been evaluated, they will go over pricing with you and tell you what options you have. At this point, you can decide if you want to go with their offer, or how you want to proceed. Keep in mind that this can be very costly, although at this point it may very well be the only chance you have for recovering your data.

The smartest way to avoid data recovery altogether, is to create a backup of your files and keep backing them up. Companies and those who do their work with computers should always back things up at least once a day. This way, if your hard drive happens to crash or you lose all of your data, you’ll have the back up files safe and sound. Then, when you take your hard drive to a specialist to be recovered, you’ll have the files to keep on working. Also, at this point, you can choose whether or not you want to have the hard drive recovered, or just scrap it and get a new one - as you’ll have all the files backed up and ready to use.

In the event of data loss or hard drive failure, you should always remain calm and know that there are options out there to help you recover your data. If you’ve been backing up your information, you won’t need to worry near as much. From backing up your data to data recovery specialists - you’ll have the options you need to keep your sanity and recover your lost data.

Monday, June 8, 2009

100 free iPhone apps that'll work your brain compiled by college search site

100-free-apps-for-the-iPhone.jpgOnline Best Colleges (dot com) has thrown together a list of 100 free iPhone apps that'll make you smarter if you use them. As it's so big, it understandably has quite a few throwaways (such as Gmail, or using Pandora radio to "learn more about music"), but there are a few gems here you may not be using. From the list:

16. Mint: Use's app to keep track of your finance wherever you are.
38. Droogle: Find recipes for drinks and shots with this app.
78. Urbanspoon: Find places to eat in different neighborhoods by shaking this slot machine-like app.
87. Lose It!: Get smarter about your weight loss plan by setting up a calorie "budget" with Lose It!
Don't know if you'll get any wiser, but it's worth a look — if only to see if you can squeeze a little extra functionality out of your iPhone.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Vista Ultimate Extras update


If you’re one of those high-end PC users who sprung for Windows Vista Ultimate hoping that the promised Ultimate Extras would someday amount to something, you might have to keep waiting after today. Microsoft released a precious few updates for the Ultimate Extras package via Windows Update today, including new sound schemes, updated language packs, and three new DreamScene animated desktops. These make Vista Ultimate users’ wallpaper turn into distracting nature video loops, playing like screensavers on your desktop behind your icons and windows. Click Continue below for an in-depth look at what you get.

The two sound schemes consist of Ultimate Extras Pearl and Ultimate Extras Glass, both sets of noises we could do without while trying to get some work done, but pleasant and well-done nonetheless. “Glass” turns Windows system sounds into effects that resemble that singing sound you make when you run a wetted finger around the rim of a crystal glass. The various plinks, plunks, and glassy whines are actually ethereal and beautiful, if you’re looking for that kind of stuff to waft from your PC. The “Pearl” sounds have an elegant feel to them, more muted with less reverberation and edge, with strings lulling you to sleep when you exit Windows.

DreamScene Content Pack #3 takes the total number of video loops distributed by Microsoft to 12. Of these three new 1280x720 (hey, that’s 720p HD!) animations, the best is a dripping leaf, a really sharp-looking video file with its background nicely racked out of focus. Then there’s a dripping icicle that's equally clear but by the time we saw that one, we felt like heading for the nearest bathroom. The third is a few months late, diffuse autumn leaves shimmering in the sun. It’s a soothing shot, but makes it hard to see any icons you have on your desktop.

DreamScenes use up a token amount of resources on our test system here, with CPU usage idling at 1-2% without an animation running, and 3-5% with it on. There are third-party animations available, too, called Stardock DeskScapes, and many of those are even more exquisite than these from Microsoft. You can even shoot your own videos, preferably in HD, to use as looping animations, too. These DreamScenes are excellent. Too bad you must own Windows Vista Ultimate to run them.

There were also unspecified updates to the Language Packs, letting you switch languages with different user accounts. This brings the total number of languages supported to 35. Overall, maybe there are more Vista Ultimate Extra coolnesses on the way, but so far, these noises and animations, along with the previously-released Texas Hold ‘Em and BitLocker encryption accessories, aren’t exactly a bargain given Vista Ultimate's premium price. But then, if you already own Ultimate, free is good.

10 lies you need to stop believing about Windows Vista


We've all heard the litany of complaints about Microsoft Windows Vista. The blogosphere reverberates with Vista schadenfreude (DVICE occasionally included), perpetuating assertions that the flagship Windows operating system is expensive, unwieldy and generally a disaster. It's time for a fact check.

We wanted to approach this project from the only angle that counts — one of experience and first-hand knowledge of Vista. To do this, we've been extensively testing the current version, Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1, both Ultimate and Home Premium versions), using it on everything from a dinky laptop to a dual quad-core monster desktop workstation. We've been putting it through its paces all day, every day for six months.

We set out to test the Top 10 Vista criticisms we found, determining if those complaints held true with how Vista works today. Is it really as bad as everybody says it is? Or is it all just perception based on a few initial problems and Internet propaganda? Hit the Continue jump to read the 10 biggest lies you need to stop believing about Vista.

1. Plenty of Bugs and Glitches
This one is pure propaganda. In our experience, the only crash we've experienced happened when we installed the new version 8.0 of iTunes (how ironic!), and even that didn't result in the dreaded Blue Screen of Death — just a hard lockup that required a cold boot. System Restore blew out the problem, bringing everything back to normal in minutes.
Lie Meter: 10 (Key: 10 = total lie, 0 = everything you've heard is true)

2. Upgrading Is a Hassle
Using Vista's original version, we encountered a weird anomaly with HP printer drivers where Microsoft Word would mysteriously re-launch after we closed it, but no crashes resulted. We've had another issue with M-Audio, where its USB preamp for our podcast microphone has no Vista-compatible driver, to this day. In its first days after initial launch, 29% of Vista's driver problems are allegedly the fault of NVIDIA. While we're using NVIDIA graphics cards on both the notebook and desktop, we've been lucky not to experience any video-driver troubles. And on the notebook with Vista pre-installed, the driver troubles have been nonexistent.
Lie Meter: 5

3. Nagging Security Prompts
The dreaded User Account Control, or UAC, does nag you incessantly, wanting to know if you're sure you want to do this or that. But it's easy to disable those prompts, so much so that if you can't do it, you're not even trying. The one's a favorite complaint from those who are completely clueless about Vista.
Lie Meter: 9

4. There Are Many Versions — Expensive Versions
Microsoft is brand spamming us with all those multiple versions of the Vista operating system, and we wish there were just one. The pricing is high, too, retailing at $319.95 for a non-upgrade copy of Vista Ultimate (upgrade for $219.95), and $259.95 ($129.95 to upgrade) for the most popular version, Vista Home Premium. Cheaper versions don't even have that sweet, gorgeous Aero interface, so we're not even counting them. Keep in mind that these are retail prices, and all Microsoft's future service packs and updates are free, so you could get away with only buying Vista once and keeping it for years without paying any more. Taken in context, it's not a bad deal, and unless you're using Ubuntu (our fave OS) or other open-source software, a modern OS isn't going to be cheap no matter how you slice it.
Lie Meter: 8

5. It's Not Simple or Intuitive
This is so subjective, one person might think all computers are near-impossible to use while the person next door thinks they're all simple. We've found Vista to be full of usability enhancements, and see no difficulty using it. We particularly like the way menus stay on the top of an application window, and not at the top of the desktop — this is especially useful when multiple apps are open across our dual-monitor setup. We also like the two mouse buttons on our Vista laptop.
Lie Meter: 10

6. Windows Defender Slows Everything Down
It's true that Windows Defender is a memory hog, but that's the case with most antivirus software. It's unfair to single out Vista's software on this one. And if you're careful (like us), you don't need antivirus software, anyway. It's like closing the barn door after all the horses have already run out. Virus paranoia is a trumped-up piece of fear mongering planted for propaganda purposes. Are we just lucky? Windows Defender doesn't slow us down, because we shut it down without consequence. Maybe it's because we know better than to click on strange attachments (and use Gmail), we have a hardware firewall with a strong password, we always use Firefox, or we just don't wander around sleazy websites — but virus trouble on Vista is rare.
Lie Meter: 5

7. It's Generally Slow
If you have an old PC, just about anything you do short of MS-DOS is going to seem slow. Yes, Vista and its Aero interface require more resources, and Vista needs a modern processor and multiple gigs of RAM. But hey, this is 2008. Also, Microsoft made a mistake in quoting the minimum system requirements way too low. But overall, in my tests of XP vs. Vista on the exact same machine, Vista was 15.28% faster.
Lie Meter: 10

8. Slow File Transfers
This was a problem with the original Vista, but it's been largely solved in Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1). When we tested SP1 (a pre-release, not the shipping version) file-transfer speeds, they felt slower than Windows XP's, but a lot of that difference had to do with the way the transfer is displayed on the screen. When XP's file-transfer window closed, the transfer wasn't really complete, but Vista was more true to the actual transfer and the subsequent file checking that goes on. But yes, the file transfers aren't as fast in Vista, but in the shipping version of SP1, the difference is hardly noticeable.
Lie Meter: 6

9. Activation Issues
Windows Vista must communicate with the mother ship in Redmond if you want to keep on using it, or you must enter a special activation number after you contact Microsoft. But it's really no big deal. On the laptop we received with Vista already installed, activation wasn't even an issue at all — it was already done. On the desktop machine where we installed Vista Ultimate, the activation was done online in about two seconds and if we weren't looking, we would have hardly known it happened. If we were constantly swapping out a lot of hardware, this would be annoying, but usually, complaints about activation come from only the most inept software pirates who aren't aware of numerous activation workarounds.
Lie Meter: 10

10. Start Menu Is Hard to Navigate
This is a really lame complaint. If the start menu is hard for you to navigate, it's probably pretty tough for you to operate a close-and-play record player, load a DVD, and start your car, too. We saw this complaint in a lot of places all over the web, and find it to be vacuous.
Lie Meter: 10

Most of the disinformation floating around about Windows Vista is simply not true. Yes, you've been fed a pack of lies, accompanied with a healthy dose of "truthiness." Sure, a lot of that static originated at Vista's clumsy release 18 months ago, but since SP1 was rolled out, Vista is a different animal now. We originally planned to dump Vista after we finished this half-year test, but now that we've experienced it first-hand, we're sticking with it. In fact, we like it. A lot.

Microsoft turns a bus into a mobile office

ms_bus_service_3.jpgHow's this for a double-edged sword? Microsoft is providing free bus transportation to work for some of its employees in China. Hey, that's great! It saves money as well as the environment. The downside? The bus is full of workstations, meaning everyone it picks up gets to work that much longer every day.

I mean, this is all well and good if the commute time is counted as part of the eight-hour workday or whatever, but I doubt that's the case. Commuting is a precious time to zone out, listen to music, and fantasize about quitting your job and/or killing your boss. Don't take that away from us, Microsoft.

Windows Mobile 6.5 cell phone OS unveiled

windows-mobile-65-04.pngWell it's about time fuddy-duddy Microsoft hopped up with the hepcats and finally redesigned that stodgy Windows Mobile interface. And what a bang-up job the Redmondians have done with this version 6.5 of its cell phone operating system. It's not quite new-feature-packed enough to be called 7.0, but an earnest effort nonetheless. Look for it to find its way into cell phones sometime in the second half of this year.

We like that honeycomb layout and the Zune-like atmosphere. Also appealing are the one-handed interface, no-waiting voice mail, the cloud-syncing MyPhone online service, and a new app store. Sound familiar? Let's just hope the writers of the upcoming collection of Windows Mobile cell phone apps are infected with the same enthusiasm as those aligned with Cupertino.

Windows 7: Minimum hardware reality check

win7_minifront.pngWindows 7 has suspiciously low minimum hardware requirements — a 1GHz processor and 1GB of RAM. Would such a lowly PC would be usable? To find out if Microsoft is quoting a realistic minimum for a Windows 7 machine, we installed the latest beta onto a nine-year-old 1GHz PC with 512MB of RAM. Let's see what happens.

The first thing we quickly noticed: This 1GHz Dell Dimension XPS 1000 box, which we thought was phenomenal when it was new back in early 2000, is dog-slow. We also knew from the start that its 32MB Matrox Millenium 400 graphics card wouldn't be able to handle the minimum DirectX 9, resulting in an inability to enjoy that Aero eye candy of Windows 7.

Just how slow is this old dog? Comparing it with a shiny new HP xw8600 workstation with two quad-core Xeon X5492 processors, 16GB of RAM and 64-bit Windows 7, if this 1GHz machine were going any slower, it would be at a halt.

Check out the unscientific comparisons in the table above, and notice how far computing hardware has come in nine years. To get an idea how your machine stacks up, you can download the free CineBench R10 graphics and processor benchmarks here.

Okay, okay, we get it. This machine is slow. With those strikes against it at the start, we settled back for a long evening of operating system installation. The fresh install took over three hours to accomplish. And even when the OS was securely ensconced in its shabby new home, Windows 7 didn't recognize its old codger graphics card, nor had it ever seen a network card as ancient as that 3Com 90x on board. After a tedious search and installation of legacy drivers for both, the machine was locked and loaded.

So what did it feel like to run Windows 7 on a machine that was even lowlier then the bare minimum? Surprisingly, the battered box browsed web pages in Firefox and Internet Explorer admirably. Even though our RAM was a half-gig below Microsoft's minimum requirement, it could still run a browser without using up all its RAM.

Take a look at the performance monitor above, and you can see that the machine was keeping up nicely, even when we were browsing websites in Firefox and downloading a Windows 7 update at the same time.

When that Windows update was downloaded and started to install, it was a different story. We shut down Firefox to let the installation occur unfettered, and then quickly changed our minds, and re-launched Firefox. We could tell we had reached some kind of limit, because Firefox took 82 seconds to launch.

It's not going to break any speed records, but if you're looking to run one or two applications at a time on such a meager machine, and don't mind living without the Aero interface's glassy and shiny edges, or the cool new taskbar previews of Windows 7, Microsoft's 1GHz/1GB requirement is barely realistic