Wednesday, September 21, 2011

When computers fail ...

For the second time this year my laptop died last night. Of course the last back-up was two weeks ago (and the first time I let more frequent backing-up slip since the last disaster in April). The timing was lousy. I'd spent the weekend making edits to the new novel and I was in the middle of drafting an email to my agent to send the final version to him when the blue screen of death appeared. I also lost work on a new story and academic papers. The manufacturer has told me it's a known fault on the model I have, but that they won't replace the machine. They'll just keep replacing the faulty part, which typically fails after 4 to 6 months. In other words, buy a new machine or be prepared to lose it for a couple of days, twice a year, to repair. Thankfully, I've (read my technician) managed to recover all the data on the harddrive this afternoon. The new novel has now gone to the agent. The machine is backed up in three places. My cautionary words of advice - back-up your machine. Like now!

3 comments:

Margot Kinberg said...

Rob - Sorry to hear about your computer breakdown! Wise words, too, about backing things up...

Alan Glynn said...

Rob, think about Dropbox, or the upcoming iCloud. Very convenient. You'll never have to back up again. It's the way forward . . .

Rob Kitchin said...

For some reason I'm unnerved by the idea of storing stuff via the cloud. It's a security thing. The data is accessible to whoever is managing those cloud resources and presumably anyone who can hack it. If you research software, security and data shadows it's difficult not to get paranoid!
I prefer to backup onto external drives that are then stored in a locked unit. The problem is to remember to do it ...

I finished Bloodland last night. Will put up the review tomorrow or Friday.