Backup and Recovery

Best backup practices and recovering lost data.

How can I eliminate duplicates before I do a backup?

Val from Valencia, CA

Episode 1058

Val wants to offload his data onto one large drive and "de-duplicate" his files. Leo says there are a number of programs that can do it, but it's something that makes him nervous because they have the potential to eliminate what it thinks is a duplicate when it isn't. A better way is to scan the contents with a redunancy check. Leo says that SyncToy is a good one.

Leo says he can keep the old drive anyway. Drives are cheap, so he could just use that as a backup.

How can I back up text messages on my iPhone?

Terri from Costa Mesa, CA

Episode 1056

Terri has a ton of text messages over the last five years on her iPhone that she'd like to get onto her computer. Leo says that it's more than just texts, it's also images. First, Leo says she should backup her phone. Then get a program called iExplorer, by Macroplant. It will not only get her music, but also will allow her to export text messages to PDF, along with images. It'll also save voicemails.

How can I transfer my files from one PC to another?

Zach from Los Angeles, CA

Episode 1056

Zach needs a new computer and wants to know how he can transfer all his music, videos, and images. He has thousands of pictures and a lot of duplicates. He also has a backup drive, but he's not sure it always backs up. Leo suggests just dragging the documents and settings folder over to the external drive. That will get everything.