Backup Solutions for your Novel

Revision as of 11:42, 12 November 2014 by NewMexicoKid (talk | contribs)

About this page

This page attempts to document the prevalent backup solution options for writers.

Backup Solutions

  • flash drives - GOOD: small/portable; no network required. CAUTION: flash drives will eventually fail -- do not rely on this for your only backup BAD: Not automatic.
  • external hard drive - GOOD: more reliable than flash drives. CON: not quite as portable as flash drives. CAUTION: hard drives will eventually fail -- make sure this isn't your only backup BAD: not automatic.
  • E-mail to yourself - GOOD: simple (everyone has access to e-mail). NOTE: You can do this with gmail as gmail gives you a lot of space. BAD/NOTE: no version control in this method. Also not automatic.
  • dropbox - WHAT: this is cloud storage with enough available for free that you can just use the free account; there are programs you run on your computer that keep a local directory automatically sync'd with your remote drop box account. GOOD: automatic! Can sync with multiple local computers. NOTE: network access needed to access the backup or sync to it.
    • Note: if you get your dropbox account from an existing dropbox user, both you and they get an extra 500 Mb of storage.
    • Dropbox will create duplicates if you alter a file on two different computers without syncing them first so one file doesn't override the changes on the other.
  • subversion or git - WHAT: version control software. NOTE: requires a remote server host and network access. GOOD: version control software is very reliable and saves every change you make. BAD: not automatic by default, but can be scripted to be.
  • google drive - WHAT: cloud storage with office apps (though you could just use this as cloud storage). GOOD: automatic versioning. You can write your novel in google docs directly. Can export to various office suite formats like OpenOffice/LibreOffice or Word or RTF.
    • NOTE: there might be a usability limit of 40K words for google docs files
  • spideroak - another cloud storage provider.
  • save your file into alternating filenames and onto separate physical disks - GOOD: some reliability/redundancy gained. BAD: not automatic by default.
  • paper - GOOD: you can hold it and read it! BAD: contributes to tree usage; expensive/takes time to create