Windows XP / Networking

Backing Up to Remote Computers

One easy way to back up your data files is to use another computer on the network. If your network has two computers, each computer uses the other as the place to store backups. If your network has more than two computers, you can pick one of the other computers. In fact, you can back up your data to every remote computer in a frenzy of cautiousness.

This technique works if you operate on the theory that it is highly unlikely that all the computers on the network could die at the same time. The fact is that a fire, flood, or power surge from lightning could very well destroy every computer that is on your network. If you use remote computers for backing up, you should also back up on some sort of media, whether it is floppy disks, removable-drive cartridges, or tapes, on a weekly or monthly basis. Or, sign up for a backup service with your Internet service provider (ISP). This works by uploading your backup files to the ISP's servers. Start by creating a folder for yourself on the remote computer. Make it a shared resource.

After you create a backup folder, perform the following steps every day to use Windows Explorer to back up data to a remote computer:

  1. Open Windows Explorer on your own computer and then right-click your My Documents folder, and choose Copy from the shortcut menu that appears.
  2. Click the plus sign to expand the Network Neighborhood listing in Windows Explorer, and also expand the computer that has your backup folder.
  3. Right-click your personal folder, and choose Paste from the shortcut menu that appears.

If you are making another backup on another remote computer for safety's sake, repeat the preceding steps.

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