Saturday, April 10, 2010

Belly Up and Back Ups

Well, after my post on setbacks the other day, my laptop went belly up. When I turned it on, I got absolutely nothing, no reaction, other than a tiny light by the plug indicating power. The front light that indicates power said no. Internal conflict. Much better when it's in the book!

The laptop isn't very old - I bought it in the summer, so it's still under warranty. So I've sent it off to the laptop homeworld for some TLC. It appears the problem may be in the motherboard. Maybe it will come back looking like this.

My daughter has a laptop as well, but we don't have another household computer. I can use hers when it's available. Unfortunately she and my son both use it for assignments and studying - and this is the crazy month at school for them right now. So I don't know how much I'll be able to use it.

Long story short... I probably won't be visiting nearly as many blogs this month (or however long it is before the laptop returns from the homeworld). *sigh*

The other problem is I don't back up my stuff regularly. Probably every few weeks or so, but I don't think of it nearly often enough. Of course I haven't done it in a few weeks. The busier I am at school, the less time I have, and the less often I think of it. I have GOT to make it a habit!!

Do you remember to back up your stuff? If you don't, please do it now! I usually just email it to myself at a couple of email addresses and put all the info on a memory stick every once in a while. I've got too many songs to use the online storage. Any better tips? Anyone willing to slap me upside the head every few days and remind me to back everything up?

Okay - the laptop is required - I'll pop back at some point and see how everyone is doing. :)

129 comments:

  1. Oh NO! I'm so sorry to hear about that - it bites!

    I don't usually back things up. It's not that I don't think about it... I'm just lazy! Now, I'm going to!

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  2. Talli - it does indeed! Go, go, go!! Back up now! I don't know how many revisions I may have lost

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  3. Thanks for the backup reminder. I can so empathize. I had computer issues last summer until Christmas. I had to share with husband and sometimes I could use my son's laptop. (he shared it with his brother already). Thankfully, I had just backed up my story, so didn't lose anything, but it did create some tension in the house as I went into computer withdrawl. lol

    Here's wishing your computer a speedy recovery!

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  4. I haven't backed up my entire system, but I back up all my WiP files after every writing session. My short stories and poetry are archived online. I agree, and I add my voice to yours for anyone reading this, back up your computer files regularly! Your writing is too hard earned and precious to lose to the whims (and failures) of technology.

    Hope you're back online soon. Thank God for the warranty, right??

    Have a fab weekend :))

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  5. so sorry to hear the issues with the electronics.

    I back mine up, but I also email a copy of my WIP to a server email, i.e. Yahoo or Gmail so that I can have a copy to work with from anywhere, plus its extra backup.

    Hope everything is up and running again soon!

    Visit My Kingdom Anytime

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  6. Yikes! I'm so sorry to hear about your computer! :( I usually try to save copies of my WIP on a USB drive, and sometimes via email. I'll be sure to be more careful now. Hoping for the best for you! See you whenever you're plugged in again.

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  7. Sad times.
    I was the fourth into three computers until last summer when we became a four computer family (three computer and a laptop, literally)
    For safer storage I hear Dropbox is useful - you can pick your work up when you like from there.
    I use the memory stick method; I'm off to e-mail myself.
    Thanks for the reminder.

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  8. I do the zip drive and also email myself attachments. Sorry to hear of your loss and hope you're back up to speed soon.

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  9. I always forget to back up my stuff. You'd think I would remember considering I've lost two manuscripts that way. Thanks for the reminder. Hope your laptop comes back in perfect condition and ready to go!

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  10. I back up my entire system (any changes) everynight. I back up my writing to three seperate locations. I've learned my lesson by suffering through numerous computer and harddrive failures.

    I'm sorry to hear about your problems! We have two computers, a laptop, and an iPhone...I couldn't unplug if I wanted to. :)

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  11. YES, I always back up my stuff! In college my hard drive crashed twice in a month (both hard drives were recalled- go figure) but luckily my computer-wizard brother did some kind of complicated thing that retrieved my files and transferred it to my dad's computer. Then my dad surprised me with a memory stick so we wouldn't have to go though that again! I also email my WIP to myself after I'm done writing for the day. It's quick and easy!

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  12. Jemi, I'm so sorry!

    We all know we should back up, but it's so easy to forget or to procrastinate - after all, what's five more minutes? These days I use a MAC and everything's backed up automatically on the hour.

    Love the photo! :)

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  13. I should back up my desktop more often! I only do so every few months. Good luck with the computer. Maybe they will be able to retrieve what you've lost.

    Nice picture :)

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  14. I am always afraid of my computer fritzing. Agh! So frustrating for you. Hope it's fixed quickly. (and I use Carbonite - an online backup - and it's unlimited storage for a very reasonable yearly fee. You might want to look into it (just a suggestion)

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  15. Mary - thanks! I totally agree with the tension in the house - the rest of them think it's hilarious that I'm going through withdrawal :)

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  16. Nicole - you're much more organized than I am! I'm definitely going to be more careful after this :)

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  17. Courtney - thanks - I do send myself copies - just not often enough. I could kick myself for being so forgetful :)

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  18. Shelley - thanks! I hope it doesn't take too long. They said anywhere up to about 6 weeks - which would be a really long time!

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  19. Elaine - I have heard some people talk about online storage. I've never looked into it - but I think I will now!

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  20. I work on computers and the motherboard is a simple fix. You probably haven't lost your files, either.

    I have an external hard drive and back up all files at least once a week. I highly recommend getting one!

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  21. Susan - thanks - I don't think I'll forget to back up more often any more!

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  22. Carol - you've lost 2 stories??? I'd be very stressed! Go back up now :)

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  23. DL - you are so organized! I'm going to try to follow your system from now on!

    I love the amount of tech tools you have! Awesome :)

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  24. Laura - wow - that would stink - losing it so often - but at least you learned some good habits for saving your stuff :)

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  25. VR - I've heard so many good things about Macs - maybe the next laptop will be on of them!

    Isn't the steampunk computer great? Love it :)

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  26. Aubrie - I'm hoping the info isn't affected and it's just a power problem - but maybe I'm just dreaming. I don't know anything about the mechanics of these things. I'll just cross my fingers :)

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  27. Rebecca - I haven't looked into online storage yet - once my laptop comes back I'll put it on the list of things to do! :)

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  28. Alex - that is good to hear! I hope you're right :)

    I never thought of the external hard drive - and I should have - my daughter has one!! Duh...

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  29. Sorry to hear, Jemi. Nothing worse than being off-line through no fault of your own. Like having a shiny new car with no blasted keys!

    I will miss seeing your ... (was going to say your smiling face just then!) ... so instead I will say, I will miss your beautiful flower avatar :)

    Fingers crossed you'll be back with us soon honey :).

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  30. Wendy - thanks - I hope it's not too long - I'll go nuts. It's a Saturday night so maybe I can visit a few blogs before someone needs the computer :)

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  31. Sorry to hear that Jemi! I train software and I stress to my offices they should have three back ups. An online backup, an external hard-drive, and a network back-up (copying files on to another workstation on your home network). There are tetra-byte external hardrives with automatic back up too, now. But I must admit, I don't always follow my own advice. I have a good feeling it will work out okay for you!

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  32. Thanks Lynn. I hope it works out - if it's a motherboard problem I should be okay - but I'm trying to get my hopes too high. I'm definitely going to buy an external hard-drive. They're well worth it.

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  33. I'm so sorry, Jemi! That's the worst. I have such a love-hate relationship with technology. When it works, it's the best thing ever. When it doesn't, panic ensues.

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  34. Tricia - our family motto is "Technology hates me" :)

    I do love my gadgets, but I really need to learn more about how they work and how to fix them.

    It wouldn't help in this case as it's under warranty, but it would be nice to know more!

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  35. So very sorry about the computer. I totally know how you feel. I lost two hard drives in one year. I do back up on an external hard drive, but, like you, I don't do it on a regular basis. I'm thinking I'll do it tomorrow.

    I hope the techs can save all your stuff!

    Helen
    Straight From Hel

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  36. Oh, Jemi, I'm sorry.

    I have a macbook, and I love it. I really want that steampunk cover....they have a few different fab covers I've had my eye on.
    They have some pretty clever skins too, for laptops.

    I hope you don't lose anything (they can usually recover everything), and that you get it back quickly.
    Most of all, I hope you go have fun while being offline.

    Happy Weekend,
    Lola

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  37. that's awful! Good thing I'm OCD about backing up my files. Thanks for the warning though.

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  38. I backed everything up on cd new years day and told myself I'd do it weekly or at least monthly... well now that you've reminded me, I have a job to do!

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  39. Oh, I'm so sorry about your computer. I don't back up as much as I should. Though, when I'm very close to having a book done I become obsessive and do it every day. Hope everything turns out well for you.

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  40. Sorr to hear about the laptop. I just got my new one, because my old one was being so evil. I actually have two external hard drives and I back everything up to them once a week. I know it's over kill, but hey if one back up goes bad , I have a 2nd. The files I work on daily are also on a thumb drive updated every time I'm on the computer. Luckily with this new computer it reminds me to do a backup every time I boot up.

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  41. A word of warning to those who backup on a usb thumb drive. Don't just take it out or it could not open when you put it back in. Always go through the "safely remove hardware" (in your task bar at the bottom) before you disingage it. I know many people who have lost data by taking thumbs in and out.

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  42. This is terrible new Jemi! I hope your laptop recovers soon.

    I'm a bit anal so I back up every few minutes. I don't recommend being so dramatic!

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  43. I trust your laptop will be fixed and returned to you quickly.
    My husband and I have a laptop and a desk PC, thank goodness, so we can use them without taking turns. That is so hard not having ready access, I am sure. When I write articles I mail them as attachments to the editor and to me, plus I save them to a disk. I hope you saved everything that is important.

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  44. So sorry about your laptop! My hardrive went out a few months ago, but fortunately I had a backup. It's a Seagate and it automatically backs up every week, and my crucial files (like writing) are synched, so as soon as I save it's backed up there too. I recommend it. Though, having one of those nifty steampunk computers wouldn't be bad :)

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  45. Oh, what a PAIN! Hope it won't take as long as they say.

    I back up regularly when I'm working on a manuscript...but it's just usually an emailing thing for me. Must-do-better!

    Elizabeth
    Mystery Writing is Murder

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  46. Helen - timing is everything. I'd just said to my daughter the day before that I'd forgotten to back up for a bit and I'd do it 'tomorrow'. *sigh*

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  47. Lola - thanks - I'm really hoping to not lose everything. I'm really going to check out the Macs next time.

    I will definitely concentrate on having fun!

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  48. Palindrome - I'm OCD about so many things - can't believe I haven't been about this! That'll change now :)

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  49. Michelle - that's kind of the way I've been doing it - good intentions...

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  50. Kathi - that's like me - but that's going to change. I hope :)

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  51. CC - I'm good about 'safely removing' the drives - it's just the remembering to use the darn things :)

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  52. Tamika - lol :) You sound like my daughter. She's very careful. And she tells me it's because I reminded her so often when she first started using the computer. I've got to learn to take my own advice!!

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  53. Terra - I've saved my writing files - just haven't backed them up recently to my email or thumb drive. So at the worst I've lost 3 or 4 weeks worth of revisions. I do have some notes on an online forum about the revisions so it won't be too bad - I hope!

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  54. Lorel - I certainly wouldn't mind one of the steampunk computers - they're very, very cool!

    I haven't heard of Seagate - I'll definitely look into it - thanks :)

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  55. Elizabeth - I'm really hoping they were conservative in their time frame!

    I'm going to do better from now on too - I hope!!

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  56. Wish I could send you one of our computers. We recently gave one away because five was too many!

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  57. Diane - 5? Wow! That's a lot - but handy in a case like this :) Thanks for the thought though!

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  58. Ugh! That really stinks! It also gets me thinking I should go out and buy a memory stick. Last one I purchased didn't work for the antiquated laptop I had (and since replaced - thank goodness) and so hubby confiscated it.

    I hope all your stuff wounds up being recovered!

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  59. Thanks Kimberly! I hope so too. I hope you get a new memory stick soon.

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  60. Hope you are back online soon! Good luck with the computers.

    Harvee

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  61. Harvee - I hope so too - this computer sharing is crazy!! But at least I have something to work with :)

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  62. Yes it's something I should do as well. I have a lot of business files on mine that would be a disaster if lost. Thanks! :o))

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  63. I'm pretty good about backing up my writing. It's my music and pictures I need to do!

    Computer problems are right up there with car problems. Highest level of ugh!

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  64. Good luck with your computer problems! That is always tough to go through!

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  65. Hi Jemi, I just stopped in to introduce myself and check out your blog, (my post will follow yours for the Mother's Day blog tour). I'm so sorry to hear about your computer problems! I've been there, and it is NO FUN! Someone mentioned dropbox - I use it and it's wonderful. It's been a lifesaver for me - the last time I had computer problems it was my own fault - I dropped my laptop, shattering the screen and had to wait two weeks for the replacement. Fortunately I had just saved my files to dropbox the day before so I could still access them via my husband's computer. The best part? It's free, and you get a lot of space, (can't recall exactly how much), plus you can purchase extra space if you need it. I highly recommend them. I also have a reminder on my calendar to back up every Saturday. Without that I doubt I'd ever remember.
    I hope you're back up and running soon!

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  66. Oh, the dreaded computer malfunction. I just recently had the sense to email my manuscript to myself. I should back up more of the stuff on my zip drive though. In fact.....maybe right now. No time like the present, right? Who knows maybe the next time I turn on my computer I'll get what you got.
    Hope everything is recovered!!

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  67. I'm so sorry to hear about your laptop - that's rough! We have a big family computer that I copy my wip to every once in a while, but not nearly often enough. Every time I hear a story like this I remember I need to do that more often. Thanks for the reminder, and I hope you get your laptop back soon!

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  68. Two Tuesdays back, I wanted to back-up, then decided it was too much hard work, so didn't. The next day, I was hit by a virus!!! Luckily, the data wasn't affected, but I have started backing up once a week now.

    And you take care!

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  69. Niki - yikes! Business files being lost would not be a good thing! Go back up!!

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  70. Alyson - highest level of ugh indeed!! :)

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  71. Jessica - it sure is! Thanks for the kind words :)

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  72. Hi Deanna - Nice to meet you - I popped by your blog last week too! Drop box is definitely something I'll be looking into- thanks!!

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  73. Thanks Yvonne - I hope so too! Thankfully I do email at least once a month!

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  74. Susan- I know how you feel! I don't do it often enough!

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  75. Rayna - thanks - it's amazing how bad the timing of these things can be!! Hopefully mine works out that way too! :)

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  76. This happened to me at Christmas when I wanted to send pictures. A totally blank nothiningness! My computer geek set it for auto backup after that but I still backup up to sticks and cd daily.
    Good luck.

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  77. Oh, man. That stinks. I do back up regularly--on a flashdisk and sometimes e-mail, too.

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  78. Great reminder. I have almost done novels with no back up at all. Dumb, dumb, dumb.

    Love that pic, btw

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  79. What a bummer. My husband automated my back-ups somehow to an external hard drive.

    Your stuff isn't lost forever. My husband does computer forensics and can retrieve files from computers that have literally been blown up. We're nowhere near you geographically, but I bet you can find a computer forensics specialist near you if you're desperate to get your files back.

    Good luck!

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  80. oh NOOOOOO

    laptop troubles are the worst :( :(

    here's to hoping things will work out really, really soon!!

    <333333

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  81. I'm sooo sorry, Jemi! Computers can be so amazing yet the problem is, we get so dependent on them. I know that if mine were to die, I'd be heartbroken - and in a lot of a trouble. All of my work is on it and I haven't gotten around to backing it up. Thanks for the reminder and I hope yours gets fixed soon!

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  82. ha! so funny. I blogged about this today, inspired by the Twitter conversation. Luckily when my motherboard had a problem, I was still under warranty too. Isn't it great? :)

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  83. Maribeth - I think that's a good idea - I need a computer geek of my own! Thanks for dropping by :)

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  84. Jennifer - I'm so glad I do back up fairly regularly _ just not as regularly as I should :)

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  85. Anne - yikes! A whole novel - that's gutsy!! I'd be scared to death. I love the stempunk stuff!!

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  86. Kristen - that's such good news!! I'll definitely look into the external hard drive & the expert. Thanks so much - I can breathe now :)

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  87. Tahereh - thanks - I'm hoping it's not too long! I'm already going nuts using my iTouch!!

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  88. Julie - please go back up now! I hope you never have the problem. I'm hoping it will be fixed soon!!

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  89. Tamara - I'm so glad mine's under warranty! It's such a relief - glad yours was too!! :) I'll check out your blog once I can get on a computer, and not on my iPod!!

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  90. Been there. Had to use the library and their free Internet and computers a few times myself.

    Stephen Tremp

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  91. Stephen - yeah, it stinks. Our library computers are incredibly slow and usually booked for days in advance. Hope I don't have to get to that level! :)

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  92. That's just awful! I back my stuff up about every 12 pages and email it to myself on a regular basis. I'm not sure if that counts as backing it up, but it works for me!

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  93. Stephanie - I think that counts. I've got to get better at remembering to do the email thing - although I think I'll buy an external hard drive too.

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  94. I'm sorry about your laptop - How horrible! Mine died once. I'm so paranoid that not only do I periodically back up, but when working on a manuscript, I e-mail it to myself daily because... what if something happens to the external hard drive too? I told you that I'm paranoid!

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  95. Ugh. I'm sorry for the stress. We totally rely on computers nowadays, and it's sooo easy to forget to back up our stuff! My hubby once did a post with backup hints, and we were just discussing putting up another one. (I'm not computer savvy, but he totally is.) Thank you for reminding all of us--it's so important to back up our work! I hope your computer comes back in fabulous shape and none of your stuff got lost.

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  96. Bummer! Well I hope you get it back soon! I try and back up every night I write, but my songs have no home, if I lost those - I'd be screwed! I've thought about an external hard drive? Hmmm.

    Be seeing ya ;o)

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  97. Look at the bright side: your laptop is still on warranty, and you do have a back up, even if a few weeks old. ;)

    Good luck dear, you'll be missed!

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  98. Theresa - lol :) I think in this case being paranoid is completely acceptable! I know from now on I'm going to be much more paranoid myself!!

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  99. Thanks Dawn - my hubby doesn't use a computer ever, so he's no help. :) I'm definitely going to look into an external drive once I get it back!

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  100. Thanks Erica - I think the drives the way to go. I have too many songs to put on a thumb drive too :)

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  101. Thanks Mari! I don't think it will be too bad - I hope! At least I have my iPod touch. It's small so I can't stay on it too long - my eyes can't take it! But it's better than nothing :)

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  102. What a nightmare. Hope it's all fixed soon. Excuse me, I've just got to go and back up some files!!

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  103. Yikes!
    After a scare like that to me, I back up regularly. I put it on my calendar every Friday and set an email reminder.

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  104. No, I don't remember too often. Usually when I'm having system issues, viruses. Then, its a bit late.

    I had my computer crash on me before and lost everything. You'd think I'd learn my lesson.

    ......dhole

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  105. I'm sorry about your computer. That's terrible -- I'd likely cry. I didn't back up before, but I am definitely doing so now.

    Hope things will be okay!

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  106. Rosalind - yes please back up!! I don't know what I'll face when I've got it back again!

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  107. Carolyn - it's definitely been a lesson for me. I wasn't even concerned because it was a new laptop. I've got to learn not to think the best of everyone & everything!

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  108. Donna - yikes! I'm going to try to be paranoid about backing up after this scare! And I'm going to look into other options too.

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  109. Sandy - I'm glad you're backing up. It's so upsetting to think I may have lost all of that! Frustrating :)

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  110. Sorry about your laptop! Nice to meet you, I found your blog via Hilary's blogpost today!

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  111. I hate technological problems! I'm sorry, Jemi. Hope it gets resolved soon. I love the picture above.

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  112. I got an external HD that I dedicate to my writing back ups. And like I said, I have an auto-email reminder set or else I'd never remember.

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  113. Hi Lydia - great to meet you too. I have a computer for about an hour or so, so I'm making the best of it! I popped over to your blog too :)

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  114. Thanks Roxy! I'm so not a computer expert! I wish I had time to take more courses so I could learn more. Hopefully it's all better soon :)

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  115. Carolyn - that's definitely the way I'm going to go! The more reminders I get the better :)

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  116. That's like my worst nightmare! I'm so sorry! I use a little memory stick and/or email myself regularly but I feel like there's always more.

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  117. Lisa - thanks - you've hit the problem exactly! I send it to myself, but not nearly often enough!! Could kick myself now :)

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  118. Oh that is the worst feeling EVER! The same thing happened to me a few months ago, but the HP guy walked me through the problem. Speaking of...I should probably back up like RIGHT NOW considering I haven't done it in almost a year. Yeah.

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  119. I'm sorry to hear this. My computer crashes and dies every few years (after the warranty passes) and it's always a nail-biting event. I back up my files once a week. When my first computer died, I worried that I'd never get my files back, but during a brief moment that it was up, I quickly copied everything on a flash drive, and ever since then I've backed up once a week.

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  120. LiLa - it does stink. Working on this iPod is not an easy thing for my eyes! Please go back up now!! :)

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  121. Medeia - I'm hoping I'll be that smart when I get mine back! :)

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  122. Computer troubles are the worst! I hope they get it fixed and you don't lose work. I have an external hard drive that automatically backs up everything I do daily. I've never had to actually retrieve anything, so I don't know if it works. :) If I have something I've worked really hard on I email it to myself too, just to be sure I don't lose it if the house burns down or something.

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  123. Oh Jemi, I'm sorry. I hope you get it back soon. There's nothing like not having a computer when you need one.

    I use Mozy to back up my stuff. It does it whenever my computer's been idle for like 30 minutes. It's fabulous -- even though I've never had to use it.

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  124. Natalie - I'm definitely going to set up an automatic back up plan! Well worth the trouble :)

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  125. Another good buddy told me about Mozy. I just didn't look into it fast enough! I love the automatic back up! Glad you've never had to use it :)

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  126. :o( Darn computers. Can't live with them, can't live without them.

    Hope it's fixed soon--we miss you!

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  127. Thanks Jackee - me too! Borrowing the kids' computer around assignments and studying times is not really easy! :)

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  128. I back up my important stuff (anything in Word or Excel plus photos) a lot. I've lost too much hard work over the years to forget that. On top of all the other methods of saving data, I also use your e-mailing attachment method. And I also print at least one copy of my manuscripts. I guess I'm a bit paranoid about this. I don't mind.

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  129. Pat - I think the word is smart not paranoid! I'm going to copy your style!! :)

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