Saving and transferring data

Ah. The horrible feeling of not getting all of your data, or worse, not being able to recover any of it.

Considering I recover data on a near daily basis, I want to share some thoughts during this process to steer you away from some mistakes.

1 – Think about what you actually need

First and foremost, if your data is accessible and ready for transfer, you should think about what you need. Your Favourites (bookmarks, etc) aren’t really important – unless the URL saved is some sorta obscure link.

Your “Desktop” items aren’t important either, unless you have files saved onto it that you need, such as Microsoft Word documents, etc. In the future you might want to place those in Documents. 

And that’s exactly it!–Your Documents. THAT is what you need.

What you want comes later, your Favourites, saved games files, etc.

2 – Evaluate the space it’ll consume

One of the biggest mistakes after finding what you need is not calculating the space it’ll consume. Not because of where you’re transferring it may not have enough space, but you may leave a few files behind. 

Checkout the Properties/Information of the folder/directory you’re attempting to copy and note its size. 1 GB for example. After you transfer it to the destination, make sure it’s 1 GB again.

3 – Viruses!

NEVER, ever bare transfer a hard drive’s contents if you know it’s infected. Always filter it. Run it through a third device/machine and let its anti-virus catch and weed out all of those infections. Then transfer it to the final destination.

4 – Never assume

Okay, so this one is a 50/50. If you have a particular application that you can simply re-install after the fresh operating system has been installed or the data has been transferred, never assume that the configuration folder or saved data files for that program will simply load up as-if it never happened on the new install. 

Always be prepared for the worst case scenario.


After reading this I hope you have a better time saving your data. These 4 things seem ever-so simple, yet sometimes are never thought of. 

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