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Testing, Validating Your Backups – 13 Reasons Why You Should Do It


backupToday, most individuals and businesses have developed healthy backup habits.

But despite this, we’re still seeing a steady increase in the number of serious data loss incidents. And what’s really surprising is that there seems to be a new trend of critical data loss amongst people and companies that already back up their data on a regular basis.

Amongst this new breed of data loss incident, the most common variable is a reluctance to test backups. Although most leading backup experts advise their clients to test backups on – at least – an annual basis, people are still neglecting to perform these regular tests.

And because of this, we’re now seeing an alarming trend where organizations have many years worth of backups on file, but have no idea if these backups can actually be restored.

Outlined below, are a number of key reasons why people and companies should test their backups at least once per year.

  1. New computers are constantly being added to networks. And often, we forget to back up these new computers. (This is particularly true in the case of virtual servers).
  2. New applications may be added to your computers, which save data in unusual parts of the hard drive. If you’re only backing up your desktop and “My Documents” folders, you may be leaving some important files unprotected.
  3. There may be some new internal processes within your company which dictate how certain types of data should be handled. Failure to follow these policies could land you in trouble. (Either for privacy, security or performance reasons).
  4. Likewise, there may be new laws or regulations that dictate what you can and cannot do with private customer information. Failure to adhere to these rules could lead to heavy penalties. (Ex: HIPAA, SOX404, PIPEDA, etc…).
  5. Storage is now growing at an alarming rate. Many people are reporting that their file storage doubles in size every year. This rapid data growth means longer backup times, slower recovery, more difficulty finding specific files, and more chances for error.
  6. Now that we’re living in the Web 2.0/Cloud Computing age, we’re seeing a rapid change in the network topology of most organizations. Employees are increasingly moving outside of the internal network, while the datacenter is being reshaped in order to leverage the benefits of public, private and hybrid clouds. If a backup administrator loses track of where these servers fit within the network architecture, they can be accidentally left out of the backup process.
  7. Now that employees are increasingly working from laptops and mobile devices, extra care must be taken to track, administer and secure the backups of these remote travelling devices.
  8. Because organizations are increasingly working in a global 24/7 marketplace, there is less tolerance for downtime. You need to ensure that your backups can be recovered quickly in order to minimize downtime.
  9. Some programs – like word processing or spreadsheets – can tolerate up to a day’s worth of data loss without causing too many problems. And other systems – such as e-commerce databases – have almost zero tolerance for data loss. It’s important to know what your backup priorities are in order to design an efficient and cost-effective backup process that still covers all of your data protection needs.
  10. Often, backup storage can become damaged without anyone realizing it. It’s important to test your backups to ensure that your data can – in fact – be retrieved.
  11. Sometimes you need to recover only a few files, and sometimes you need to recover an entire system. “Bare metal recovery” is one of the trickiest areas of backup. You need practice to ensure that you’re properly prepared… and that you’re able to recover when needed.
  12. The IT industry is known for its high turnover. Would your company be able to restore its servers if you – or another key person – were unavailable?
  13. Too often, we assume that backups can be recovered to the same systems on which it was created. But what would happen if your entire datacenter was destroyed by a natural disaster? How certain are you about your ability to recover in a timely manner?

Of course, this is not meant to be a comprehensive list. If you can think of any other reasons why backups need to be tested regularly, please leave them in the comments below.

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Manage / Check Many Email Accounts with GMX Mail Collector


Web based email market is a hot space with BIG players like Gmail, YahooMail, MSN HotMail giving tough fight and competition to each other. In such a scenario, it is next to impossible for a new service to give any meaningful competition to these BIG player, unless some innovation is offered to the users.

GMX (the acronym for Global Mail Exchange) has been able to carve out its space in this tough competitive environment. And the cool option, which I like most about GMX is its Mail Collector service, which allows you to manage and check many email accounts, all within one single interface.

How to Manage Many Email Accounts with GMX

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BadwareBusters.org – Security Help for a Non-Technical Common User


Viruses and spyware accounted for $6.5 billion in damages to U.S. households in 2008, according to Consumer Reports. And the worst part is that there is hardly a place on Internet, where a common, non-Technical person can interact and understand the online threats.

Consider a situation: You are a blogger or webmaster having a blog on weight loss. Suddenly one fine day you find that your site has been blacklisted by Google for spreading malware. What will you do? Rush to the security forums, search for the security blogs, enquire directly to Google.

Unfortunately, it is unlikely that you will find a solution of your problem at most of these places. There is hardly any place, at least I could not find, where an average Internet user can interact with actual security experts directly and request their help.

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Fix 404 Not Found Error with ErrorLytics


If you are a webmaster or blogger, you must know how important it is to limit 404 – Not Found Errors. They are just a drain on the number of visits your website commands; a lost opportunity. You know, how hard it is to generate traffic to your website, and how frustrating it would be to let these visitors land on a 404 page.

Why fixing 404 Not Found Error is important

Not only are these 404 error pages a wasted opportunity, they can affect your SERP rankings also. If the Search Engine spiders encounter too many 404 error pages, they may stop indexing your pages and frequency of visits to your site gets reduced.

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Syncplicity | A useful File Synchronization, Backup and sharing utility


syncplicity1Today there are many file synchronization and file sharing utilities available for users, but when it comes to ease of use, most of them are not very user friendly.

But Syncplicity, is a great file synchronization utility, which has a neat user interface and is easy to use. It seems to be a nice tool for collaborative working, where more than one users are involved on same files. You can synchronize, share or backup your files, both offline as well as online. It provides an ideal platform, where you can store and share your files and documents with your friends and colleagues in a secured and user friendly manner.

 

Features:

  • Real-Time Backup
  • Sharing made Simple
  • Access anytime, anywhere
  • Multiple Computers, One View
  • An Elegant Experience
  • Bridges the Online and Offline Worlds Secure

Syncplicity backs up all your files, keeps them synced and up-to-date across all your computers and computers of people you’ve shared them with, allows you and your friends to access them online (even if your computers are turned off), and can even sync them with Facebook and Google Docs.

syncplicity

At present, Syncplicity is Free for individual personal uses of data storage upto 2GB and use on two computers. For more than that you will have to upgrade your account for $9.99 per month.

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Clipperz | A Free Online Password Manager you can’t ignore


With the ever increasing threat of phishing and hacking attempts, and the number of online usernames and passwords, it is becoming extremely difficult to manage passwords without the help of a good Password Manager. With so many passwords to remember, it is almost impossible that you can have different passwords for different websites and learn them all.

What do you do then ? Either use some common passwords for many websites, and thus compromise your online security, or use a Password Manager.

free online password manager Password Managers are both online and offline. Offline passwords appears to be safer because your private data is not stored with any third party. But they lack the flexibility and you may not be able to use them from other computers, say in your office. On the other hand, online password managers are flexible but you always are doubtful about the trust worthiness of the password managers themselves.

Clipperz, is great online password manager, which solves both the purposes. It is an online password manager utility, which is highly flexible to use and allows you to login with a single click. Clipperz has an excellent feature for firefox, when it opens a side bar in firefox, and it allows you to login and open your desired websites with a single click.

Clipperz doesn’t even requires your email for registration. The data you send to them is encrypted at the browser level itself. They even do not store your passphrase, which you require to access your Clipperz account. The best part is that their source code is available for scrutiny.

Clipperz is much more than just being an online password manager. With Clipperz, you can store all your secret PINs, CVVs, SSNs and virtually anything. Clipperz offline version also offers to access your precious and confidential data are always at hand, even if you are not online.

I liked it, simply.

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FREE online desktop publishing with YUDU


 By Online Desktop Publishing we actually mean, publishing documents online from your PC to Internet, without requiring you to have a website or webpage of your own.

I have just come across a nice FREE service, which makes online desktop publishing just a simple cakewalk.

Welcome to YUDU.

Here at YUDU, You are not required to have your own web hosting or anything like that. You can just upload your pdf documents on your desktop or PC, and they will be published online absolutely FREE. You will be given a URL, where that document has been published. You can share that URL with your friends and let everyone access that document freely.Yudu, a free online desktop pubshing web tool.png1

Yudu, a free online desktop pubshing web toolYUDU works for the online desktop publishing of books, brochures, magazines, reports…in fact, almost anything you would normally print!

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