Best backup practices and recovering lost data.
Backup and Recovery
David wants to know how malware effects reinstalling apps. Leo says that once he strips off the malware, he'll have to reinstall his apps. The only way to be sure that he's eliminated the malware is to backup his data, wipe his drive and reinstall Windows. How about an image of the drive? As long as he has a clean image, he could use that. If his computer has malware when he makes the image, he'll just restore the malware. Leo would wipe the drive, reinstall everything, update it all, and then make an image.
Imaging options include:
Rod is ashamed to admit he's never backed up his computer. Leo says he's not alone. Most people don't and they don't get serious about it until they lose something. Rod is wondering if it's easy to do. Leo says sure. As we move more data in the cloud, he's probably already doing it to a certain extent without realizing it. His email is backed up. When he posts images to Facebook, it's backed up.
Jason was at the genius bar at the Apple Store yesterday with his MacBook Pro and he wants to know if Time Machine would be better than Carbonite. Leo says absolutely not. Carbonite is better because it's off site. If his house burns down, Time Machine won't really help him. Carbonite will only work when he's not doing anything. That way it won't take up resources when he needs them to. It's designed to be "nice." The Genius complained that it was using 100% of the processing power, but Leo says that's because the computer wasn't doing anything at the time.
Avatar is having trouble getting his pictures from his iTunes backup. Leo says that iTunes is a really old program now and Apple really needs to completely rewrite it. There is a backup icon that will enable him to back it up. On a Mac, iTunes will backup everything. On Windows, it backs the images up to "My Pictures" when connecting the phone. Avatar will need a photos app to do what he wants iTunes to do.
Lori wound up deleting all the audio files she had when she got rid of an audio recorder app. Leo says it won't be recoverable on the phone, but if she had a cloud backup, it may be. Since this just happened, it's possible to connect it via USB to a PC. She should make sure it shows up as a storage device. Then she can run a program like Recuva to recover the lost data. There's also EasyPhoneRecovery.com.
Ian is trying to back up his iTunes folder with a flash drive, but the drive turned out to be too small. How can he tell how large his library is? Leo says to open the iTunes program and look at the bottom of the window. That will give him a general idea of how big the media folder is and how much music it contains. He can also just right click on his iTunes Media folder and select "Get Info."
Sue needs to make more room on her iPad. Leo says to turn on iCloud photos, and select 'optimize iPad storage.' Not download and keep originals. Then it will backup the full resolution versions in iCloud and replace them with lower resolution versions to make room.
Cassie would like to carry a backup with her wherever she goes, just in case. Leo says that portable hard drives and thumbdrives are dirt cheap these days, so she can not only do that, but she can put backups in several locations off site. Can she back up multiple computers to the same drive? Leo says perhaps, but recommends doing an image instead. She should image each drive and then save those images to the backup drive. That way she can restore each separate image as required.
Leo recommends Drive Snapshot.
Lawrence has an issue with backing up his four computer's media files. Leo advises going with network attached storage that all four computers can access, and then back that up. Most NAS servers have software which will work with a variety of off-site cloud backup services like Carbonite.
Nicki saw an .exe file she didn't recognize in her system tray. Leo says that system trays hold icons of programs that are running and if she hovers over them, she should get some information. It could also be an error. It's causing security issues and Windows won't load her antivirus. It could be an infection, so she should update her antivirus or use Microsoft's Malicious Software Removal Tool.