Memory Backup

Memory Backup

We have all experienced the irritation or even horror of losing files on a computer. Imagine the economic consequences if a company were to lose all of the information it had collected over several years? Files must always be backed up because hard disks can fail, be stolen or destroyed by water or fire. Viruses may also cause permanent damage to a hard disk.

There are a number of memory backup options open to an individual or company, depending on the nature of the data and the amount that needs to be stored.

GCSE ICT - Memory Storage DeviceCompact Discs (CDs) can store up to 700Mb of multimedia data. When you save information to a CD-Recordable (CD-R), it is not possible to write new information back over it. You are able to do this, however, on a CD-ReWritable (CD-RW).

– DVDs have a much higher storage capacity than CDs and so are often used to store videos. These also come in DVD-R and DVD-RW forms.

– Magnetic tape – These store large amounts of data. They are small, tough and easy to store in themselves. They are, however, quite slow to write to or retrieve data from.

– External hard drives are essentially the same as what you would find inside your PC, but they are separable and are normally protected by hard casing. They have a very large storage capacity and are easily connected to a computer. They are not as portable as a CD, DVD or memory stick and are much more likely to break if dropped.

– Memory sticks are very small, can be attached to a key ring and for their size have a large storage capacity. They may store anything from 512Mb to 32Gb. They are robust and light and will withstand rough use but can be damaged if bent or crushed. They are more likely to be lost or stolen.

– Online storage – More and more firms are storing information online. This means data can be accessed by employees across the world, providing they have been provided with the access details. The advantage is that your data is ‘off site’ and in many cases protected by a dedicated data storage company. Storage space can be increased as and when required. This service can cost a lot of money and a lot of trust is being placed in the hands of an external organisation.

Storage devices need to be labelled correctly so that they can be located at a moment’s notice. They need to be stored in a dry secure location. You need to ensure that the correct procedure is followed when inserting and removing the storage device in order to minimize the possibility of damaging hardware or losing data.