Really go do that right now, I'll wait.
Hmmmm... dumpty dum dum dum... oh, you back?
Ok, I know, I'm really just talking to myself.
But you may have heard the "old saying" -
"There are two types of people,
those who have lost data
and those who are going to."
I'm in the process of recovering from a 500 GB hard drive melt down in my Dell laptop. Now I DID have a backup routine, but obviously not quite as routine as it should have been. Approximately 3/4 of the drive were backed up, but 1/4 of 500 GB is still a lot to lose.
Of course, now that "the cow is out of the barn," I have a 3 TB Seagate hard drive with auto data backup system running. Isn't that a comforting notion.
But then I had another anomalous melt down and learned that data isn't everything. You see after taking days to reinstall all my programs, recording programs, CAD drawing programs, 3D design, CNC cut file editing, video editing programs, mail clients, blah blah blah, you get the idea, not to mention tracking down their serial numbers and activation codes etc. It literally took days.
[And in this case I mean literally and not in the oft' misused rhetorical usage when one actually means "virtually" but I'll resist ranting.]
So, back to the melt down, Seagate did a fine job of recovering my data but it doesn't save any system or program data. So I have now learned more about cloning hard drives and saving disk images than I've ever wanted to. Here's a 3 minute YouTube that will guide you through saving a disk image that will allow you to restore your computer - ALL programs, system files, data etc. Just they way it was when you saved it. It is easier than you might think, and given the alternative of program re-install purgatory, it's a walk in the park. This is for Windows 7, you'll have to search YoutTube for other operating systems.
"More quasi-esoteric folk stuff on assorted semi obscure instruments."
Now, what are you reading this for? Go back up your data!...;~)