Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Free Software EVERY Author Needs

So there you are. After months of work, you've finally put the last edit to your life's masterpiece. It's on your computer and, of course, backed up on half a dozen other devices. But they're all in your home when your home is fill-in-the-blank: burned down, burgled, etc.

Don't think it can happen? Think again.

What you need is a little off-site back-up. Sure, you can take a copy on a CD with you to work each day. But that's not going to keep the latest edit for you if your incident happens before you can get the copy off-site.

So we want some kind of automated back-up. Free is nice. Mac compatible is a must. Easy would be good too. (If you have a .mac account that's fine but that's not free).

Look no further than iDrive for the Mac (okay, there's a windows version too for those that need it). This fine piece of software offers "2 GB of full featured Online Backup for free. Features include Automatic Backup, True Archiving, Versioning, Continuous Backup, Mapped Drive Backup and Web-based Backup Management." You can buy extra storage space if you need it but 2GB will get you a long way with most work that you'd want to produce.

Oh, and if 2GB just isn't enough and you still don't want to pay for an upgrade, you can sell your contact list to them for another 10GB. And if you don't want to sell out your friends, you can:
  • Archive your existing contacts list.
  • Then delete all of the originals.
  • Set up a dummy contact list with at least five e-mail addresses in it.
  • Send invites to those people.
  • Then restore your original contacts list.
5 minutes work will get you an extra 10GB for free.

That said, however, this is great software and I'm sure your friends won't mind you telling them about it. It would be nice if the software notification allowed you to opt out of sending the message to everyone though. My boss, for instance, would be less than amused to get a note from the guys at iDrive. Really nice for free.

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