Monday, May 20, 2013

Backing Up Your Data with Google Drive

This summer the IT team will be reimaging all of the teacher computers.  During this process your computer will be upgraded to the latest operating system and have software updates installed including new versions Adobe Acrobat and Photoshop. The reimaging process wipes all data from your computer, so backing up your data is a critical part of this process and Google Drive is great resource for making this happen.

You may have used USB thumb drives or external hard drives to backup your data in previous school years.  However, a handy online method for backing up and organizing your files is through the use of the Google Drive Folder.  This application has been installed on your computer and can be found in the Applications folder on a Mac or the Programs folder on a Windows computer.  Once the sync folder is installed you can easily drag files to the Google Drive folder on your computer and the files will be automatically added to your online Google Drive storage space.  Since the files are in Google Drive they can be accessed from any computer with Internet access.  The tutorial below will show you how to use the Google Drive folder.

Currently, Google Drive provides 5Gb of free online storage and is useful tool for storing Word, Powerpoint, Excel, and PDF files.  Any files you add to Google Drive through the sync folder will not be converted and can be accessed from any computer with Internet access.  If you would like to work from home over the summer using your personal computer you can install the Google Drive folder on that computer and easily access, edit, and save all of your files.  When you return to school in August you will only need to log back into the Google Drive folder on your teacher computer and all of your files will sync to that computer.

While the Google Drive folder is a phenomenal tool, there is one situation where you might still find a thumb drive or hard drive useful.  If you have numerous photos and videos your Google Drive folder might fill up quickly.  Should this be the case then simply save those files to an external hard drive or thumb drive.

If you have any questions regarding how to back up your data for the summer reimaging project please let one of the IT team members know.  We will also be reviewing the use of Google Drive at our next few weekly professional development meetings.