27 April 2009

Insurance For Genealogists

Nope, not a new type of insurance offered by your local insurance company. This is a self funded insurance plan. We've all heard of self funded retirement plans (Thank you Ford!), but many of us I am sure are thinking - self funded insurance plans for genealogists?

Well get closer - here's the scoop. Its called backing up your hard drive on a regular basis. Yup! That's what its all about!

I remember several years ago, the power supply for my my laptop got knocked off a table while the laptop was in use. It caused a glitch in my genealogical software that corrupted my file. Made it totally non-usable. When I figured out that my software was non functioning my first thought was "OH CRUD!, when was the last time I backed that file up?" I found myself in a panic when I realized it had been weeks!

If you don't work on your file often that may not be a biggy. But for someone like me who works on her file EVERY DAY for hours - saying I had not backed up in WEEKS meant simply - I was screwed out of several weeks of work --

Did I keep the papers I had gone thru? Did I have any notes? How would I figure out what I had put in? What had I changed? What notes had I added? Could I even begin to rebuild what I had just lost? Needless to say I was in tears. I declared that all was lost, it was hopeless!

My knight in shining armor rode in on his white horse (blue Mercury!) and saved my day. He was able to find the glitch, and repair it. In my travels speaking I meet so many people who are not as fortunate - entire files are lost and only a handful papers is left - all is lost!

With today's technology backing up is such an easy to thing to do. Networks make it very easy to put a copy of your file on another computer in the household, thumb/flash drives make moving files from one location to another a snap! External hard drives that can sit hooked up to the main computer are also another option for storing that backup so that years of hard work & research are not lost.

Many genealogy software programs today are backing up every so often while you work. I'm watching as every few seconds the blog software is saving my blog for today as I work. I guess it boils down to with all today's technology there really is no excuse for not backing up your material.

After all your genealogical insurance is self funded...

1 comment:

TennLady said...

Yep, I have a couple policies, well worth the investment.