A close friend of mine, (recently minted) Dr Jim Farris had this experience while writing his dissertation and gve me permission to share this story with you. He provides this as a reminder to back up!
Feel free to share this email with my doctoral colleagues as a motivator to back up their work.
Yes, my dog (who is still alive) found my jump drive containing all my primary dissertation files – see picture below.
The good news, I backed everything up about a month ago and have paper copies of everything that wasn’t backed up except about 20 new reference citations. The better news, a firm in Colorado saved all my data because the memory chips on the circuit board of the jump drive were not cracked ($295).
Besides external backup, MS Word will also back up files for you:
Save backup copies
You can set Word to automatically save a backup copy each time you save a document. Saving a backup copy can protect some of your work if the original document is damaged or deleted. The backup copy is the version of the document that you saved prior to the most recent save, so your most recent changes are not available in the backup copy. However, the backup copy prevents the document from being entirely lost.
NOTE If you delete the original document without saving it, the backup copy will not include any changes you made since you last saved the document.
Backup copies are saved in the same folder as the original document, with the file name Backup of document name.wbk. Each time you save the document, a new backup copy replaces the existing backup copy.
SET UP WORD SO THAT IT AUTOMATICALLY SAVES BACKUP COPIES
1. Click the Microsoft Office Button , and then click Word Options.
2. Click Advanced.
3. Scroll to the Save section, and then select the Always create backup copy check box.
The Culprit – Mathilda