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Clarissa's Blog

An academic's opinions on feminism, politics, literature, philosophy, teaching, academia, and a lot more.

Anti-crash

I was once finishing a conference talk on the night before the conference. And the moment after I wrote the last sentence, my hard drive crashed. Of course, I had to rewrite the whole thing in two hours, and it predictably bombed. The presentation was so bad that people stared. It was beyond embarrassing. 

Since then, I always write directly into Dropbox and then save to the hard drive and to the external hard drive. 

What do you, folks, do to avoid losing your stuff?

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10 thoughts on “Anti-crash

  1. Stille on said:

    I backup all important data on an external hard drive at my boyfriend’s place. Once I restart working on some personal projects, they’ll also live in a git repository somewhere, which will serve as extra backup and will also take care of versioning


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  2. TomW on said:

    I use Dropbox, it saves a copy to my office computer, the cloud, and my personal computer. If it’s something I’m extremely nervous about, I sometimes send a copy of the file as an e-mail attachment to myself.

    My university has been pushing us to use Microsoft’s One Drive instead of Dropbox. I tried it for a while and had nothing but problems. My office computer crashed regularly when I would try to save files to it and it would never sync reliably on my personal computer.

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  3. Write it out the old-fashioned way: with pen and paper.

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  4. There are several options.
    1. I have a Seagate portable external drive that I can disconnect from the Web. Anything confidential and essential goes there, with that backed up to another device. (Anything stored in the “cloud” is hackable.)
    2. Have a tech replace your conventional disk drive with a solid state drive. It will improve your PCs performance by 10x-12x and since it has no spinning parts, has much less risk of breakage. Costs about $100.
    3. Have autobackup turned on when writing, so that it saves what you are doing every 10 minutes. You might lose the last section that you’ve written, but not the entire thing.

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  5. Crystallizing Chaos on said:

    Yes, cloud for me. I use Google Drive because it’s default on my android phone. Dropbox is probably better.

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  6. I have Dropbox on my laptop. I wouldn’t save directly to Dropbox, in case, at the critical moment, you lose an internet connection and can’t access the stuff. So I sync.

    But a while ago Dropbox stopped supporting Windows XP, which I have on my desktop computer, where I compose such things. But I still have them in the Dropbox directory.

    I have a flash drive and use a batchfilt to tranasfer current data from my desktop to my laptop. I Type DSK2FLSH and it copies the relevant files, and FLSH2LAP copies them to my laptop, where they then sync to Dropbox.

    In addition I try to rotate flash drives once a week or so, so that gives yet another copy.

    So I have four copies — on my desktop, on the flash drive, on the laptop and in dropbox.

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