Back It Up!

I am a big proponent of doing backups. My WIP files are in 3 places.

– WIP folder on my desktop
– to cloud (DreamCloud w/ DreamHost)
– USB key here at my desk

LibreOffice is set to do an autosave every X minutes as well as save the document as a .bak file whenever a save is done.

The cloud version backed up weekly.

The USB key is mirrored every morning.

Today I decide to work on my project “Relic”. Opened LibreOffice, clicked the thing to open Relic and – “FILE NOT FOUND” came up. Okay. That’s weird. Go to the WIP folder. Open the Relic folder. Both the .odt and .doc versions are gone. Only the worldbuild files are there.

I’ve been doing a lot of worldbuild with this project so maybe I put the files internally into TheBrain? Open my writing brain, do a search for Relic. Find the project but the file is just a link, not the actual file. Calmly minimize TheBrain.

Open Cyberduck. Go to the cloud. Relic is there, but has a save date of two weeks ago. I know I worked on it since then but I download it anyway.

Go back to WIP folder. Open the Backup folder. Aha! There’s a .bak file with a date of just a few days ago. I can do this.

Open that file and do a “compare documents” with the one from the cloud. But the comparisons are weird. Old differences from several months ago. Went back to the cloud and realized, in my haste, I’d downloaded the wrong file. PHEW!! Drama llama.

Compare the two files. Come up with a relatively intact document. I sigh. Then quickly save it.

Notice I didn’t go to the USB key. Why? Because it was a mirror copy. That means it is exactly the same as what is on my desktop. So if it were gone from my desktop, it’s not on the key.

And why the file with the wrong name? Because it is a backup. That means it doesn’t erase files from the Destination that no longer exist on the Source. This is so if you accidentally delete a file (or in this case, rename one) from the Source, it is still in the Destination. It can be a memory hogging thing, though. And I changed it to do its thing every day and not once a week.

I think what happened is I meant to COPY the two files onto my phone but MOVED them instead. Then DELETED them from phone because it just isn’t big enough for me to view (even though I use a huge Note 8).

Long story short: Used a .bak version from desktop and compared it to a slightly older cloud version.

If you want to know more about the software I used to do this, you can read this post: Writing Software and Stuff

Or click the links below:
Syncback Pro (backup, sync, mirror, etc via cloud, ftp, other device; has free and paid versions)
LibreOffice (wonderful, free, open-source office suite; I discuss it here)
TheBrain (mindmapping and organization program that is the awesomesauce; free and paid versions)
CyberDuck (used to access cloud services)
DreamCloud (part of DreamHost; been with them for years and love these folks!)