Personal Information Management – Ever had a disk crash? Read this.

With regard to Personal Information Management – PIM – Millions of people experience a major loss of data every year!!

We all inevitably will suffer a disk crash on our primary personal computing device. This event will end up being either a minor inconvenience, OR a major disaster. Only you have the ability to influence which it is.

Below is a technique that will enable you to avoid the major disaster. It is called HSM or Hierarchical Storage Management.

Call to action: Create and follow a disaster recovery plan for your personal information.
Here’s how:
1.) Purchase two external high capacity disk drives. As large as you can afford.
2.) Attach both to your system. They should appear as separate volumes.
3.) Back up all your information to both Volumes. Use encryption if you are technology savvy enough to figure out how to. You now have 3 copies of your data.
4.) Detach one of the Drives and move it to a secure remote site like a safety deposit box, a fireproof safe, or a trusted family members house. Somewhere where a natural disaster (Fire, flood, Earthquake etc..) will not effect both locations.
5.) Periodically perform a backup of your primary system on the local add-on drive. Retrieve the remote drive, copy your data to that drive also. Maintain three copies at all times. Working copy. Local back-up, and a remote copy.
6.) When a disaster strikes on your system…. Use the local back-up to recover.
7.) When a major disaster strikes and when both your primary and local copies are lost. You still have the remote copy to recover from.

Please understand that this is the standard practice in 99% of all competent data centers in the world. They do it regularly on massive amounts of data. It is called Hierarchical Storage Management or HSM. I am suggesting that each individual take on the responsibility to manage your own information, and your own destiny. No-one else will. No-one else really cares. And the only time you will really care is AFTER a disaster has happened to you. Then it is too late. So get in front of this!! Think of this as an inexpensive insurance policy for your information.

Note: This technique can be used with various types of removable media like DVD, BlueRay disk, and or Thumb Drives, however with the amount of data you probably have, and the growth rate of data today, I highly suggest two add-on disk drives of at least 1 Terra-byte.

Note 2: At present there are a lot of web based services, sometimes referred to as “Cloud Services”. These services are robust and worth exploring and using. But, in my humble opinion, they are not yet mature enough to trust your data to as your only HSM recovery and preservation technique.


Peter Gailey


2 thoughts on “Personal Information Management – Ever had a disk crash? Read this.

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