Article: Crisis On the Home Front

by Lisa Reddell

Viruses, spam and system crashes are just some of the challenges that online business owners face on a daily basis. But there is another challenge that many online entrepreneurs may overlook. Across the globe, Mother Nature wreaks havoc with monsoons, tornadoes, hurricanes, and earthquakes. Would one of these natural disasters create a crisis on the home front for your ebiz? What would you do? Are you prepared for the worst?

Recently, a natural disaster hit my town. Seventy to eighty mile per hour straightline winds ripped through Cheney Kansas. The damage left in the wake of the storm was unfathonable. The town was in shambles. It really got me to thinking about how it would have effected my business if the storm has destroyed my home. Since I work from home, the destruction would have likely taken my business down as well. Looking over my files on my computer, just my documents folder alone is 336 megabytes. That's not including my website, graphics and the other tons of files I have.

I remembered reading an editorial from an ezine recently that spoke of online back up services. I decided that an online back up service would be worth looking into. After all, how would I recover from a tornado or flood, if it destroyed my home and business? Computers can be replaced, but what about the data and files? After a quick search using the keywords "online backup" and "online storage" (without the quotes), I had a starting point for my research.

What I found was a cornucopia of options, from pricey to quite reasonable in regards to fees. I chose the companies at random after careful consideration of features included, security issues, and amount of storage verses cost. The companies I chose, in no certain order are as follows: Free trial no 39.99/year/10 MB Type back up Free trial period the first 30 days 49.95/year/50 MB Type back up 30 day free trial 4.95/mo/3000 MB Type storage 30 day free trial 199/month/5 GB 150 activation fee Online information kit very helpful Type back up 30 day free trial 2.49/mo/50 MB Type storage/back up 15 day free trial 9.95/mo/500 MB Type back up 30 day free trial 8.95/mo/500 MB Type back up (back up only) 30 day free trial 14.95/mo/4 GB Type back up 30 day free trial 9.95/mo/250 MB Type back up

How does one know exactly how much storage one needs? Well, that's a good question. I recommend that if you use your PC on a regular basis, you probably have between 100 to 500MB of data to protect. You should only backup files that you can not easily replace. These files are usually created or named by you. Do backup documents, financial files and pictures, etc. Don't backup operating system files or applications. A good starting point in determining your storage requirements is your "My Documents" folder. To do this, right click "My Documents" and select properties. The size displays on the General tab. Take a look at other folders or files you want to protect in a similar manner to determine your storage requirements. You can always upgrade or downgrade your account.

I would not recommend using an online service in the direct vicinity in which you live. If your community is hit by a natural disaster, chances are, your back up service would be affected also. Location of your back up service should be a key consideration in protecting your data and files.

So, are you prepared for a disaster on the home front? If not, you should be. Take control of your online business. Don't wait until its too late to take action.

Lisa Note: It is my most sincere desire that this article has made you go hmmm...and answered questions about online services available that can be utilized to protect an important investment. Your business.

By Lisa Reddell Copyright 2004

About The Author

Lisa A. Reddell is a Freelance writer, owner of Reddell Marketing and publishes the biweekly Ezine, The Left Handed Times. Lisa has started achieving dreams of online success & YOU can too Read the lastest edition of The Left Handed Times. Come join our family and grow with us.

This article was posted on July 09, 2004

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