Winter Break Backup: 12 Days of Techmas, Day 10

12 Days of Techmas, Day 10: Winter Break Backup

As part of a tech person's traditional "sales pitch" to get people to backup their files, we usually describe horror stories of how you could lose all your stuff. Because this is the festive holiday season, I'm going to skip the doom and gloom, and assume you know all the reasons to back up your files. 

OK? Are we agreed? You know why it's important to backup your files? OK, let's move on to the "how."

As a Google for Education district, each teacher gets unlimited storage space in the Google Drivefor storing files. It's not really designed to serve only as a backup, but why not use it if you got it?

Winter break is a great time to do a backup. Copying all of your files takes a long time (hours or days) and temporarily slows your computer, so it's most practical to do it when you don't need to use the computer for a day or two,

Basic Files Backup on Google Drive
  1. Pick a day/time when you can leave your computer running for a day or two.
  2. Open the Google Chrome browser (This might or might not work with other browsers)
  3. Open your Google Drive (from your email, click the 9-square tic-tac-toe button and choose Drive.
  4. Click the Settings Gear in the top right corner, and choose Settings.
    • UNcheck next to Convert Uploads so that your MS Office files don't get converted to Google Docs format.
  5. Click the red New button and choose Folder
    • Name the folder "Backup December 2015"
    • Double click the folder to open it (it should be empty of course)
  6. Resize your browser window so it only takes up a small portion of your screen
  7. In the Windows File Explorer or the Mac's Finderfind the folder where your files are stored. (Maybe this is "My Documents")
  8. Drag the folder into the middle of the browser window and drop it in. This will copy the files to your Google Drive. If you have a lot of files, it will take a LONG time.
  9. Repeat step 7 with any other folders or files you want to backup.
  10. Check on your computer occasionally to see if it went to sleep. If so, wake it up. Pro tip: if you know how to prevent your computer from going to sleep, do it.
This will make a backup of your files that you can access anywhere.

Note: This is not the same as setting up file syncing, which makes sure you have the latest version of a document both on your laptop and in your Drive. If you are interested in syncing your files to Google Drive instead of just backing up, look into the Google Drive Syncing App.


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