With computers, it’s not a matter of if you will lose data–but when. Although computers now ship with more reliable solid-state storage mechanisms, data loss is still likely to occur.

There are many ways to back up your work and personal data. Here we will give you two easy and cost-effective ways to help ensure your data is backed up.

• As a district employee, you have a work-issued email account. That email address is a G-Suite email, which provides unlimited Google Drive file storage. If you are a staff member with a staff-issued Mac, we’ve already pushed this out. On the left side-bar of any Finder icon, you will see the Google Drive icon. Simply copy the files you’d like onto Google Drive to have them backed up “in the cloud”. Google keeps versions of files; if one gets deleted, you can go back and recover it or restore to a previous version.

Google Drive also offers the added benefit of not taking up space on your local drive. Feel free to “live off of” your drive–meaning save and access your files directly. This will ensure they are being backed up (without you having to remember to copy them over), as well as make the files available across multiple devices.

• Apple provides a built-in tool in macOS called Time Machine. Time Machine backs up every file, as well as incremental changes. It’s quite easy to set up. You simply plug in an external USB drive to your computer, and macOS will ask you if you want to use it as a Time Machine backup drive. Tell it yes and follow the prompts to set it up.

The district does not provide the drive, but they can be purchased for a very reasonable price from Amazon or a preferred vendor. Prices usually vary from $50-$150. Be sure to get a minimum of one TB.

As always, if you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.