Avoid Disaster: How to Make Sure Your Files are Actually Backing Up

After you’ve set up your online backup, you want to make sure it’s backing up your files properly. I use an online backup solution for my personal needs and was caught by surprise when I needed to recover a file but could not do so because my online backup hadn’t been backing up my files for over a month!

I’ve since corrected the problem and now have a convenient system in place to monitor my online backup and make sure it runs properly.

I use Jungle Disk for my online backup needs, so my instructions are going to be tailored to their service. However, you can use the main takeaways from this process to configure any online backup service. (If you don’t have an online backup service yet, use our online backup service comparison section to make a quick, informed buying decision.)

Set Up Online Backup Activity Reports

A very efficient and effective way to ensure your online backup is running properly is to set up activity reports to be emailed to you. This is very simple to do.

Jungle Disk Software

  1. Go to the ‘Backup Options’ section.
  2. Change the ‘Backup Reporting’ drop-down to Report backup summaries.
  3. Click ‘OK’ and now you are all set up. The master email on the account is where the activity reports will be sent.

Jungle Disk’s activity reports include the job’s last backup date, number of updated files, and number of errors. By regularly looking at your online backup service’s activity reports, you should easily be able to determine whether your online backup service is running properly. If I had activity reports set up, I would have noticed that my backup wasn’t running because the number of updated files was zero.

Moral of the Story

You’re not going to be able to foresee every single mistake, which is why it’s important to have systems in place, such as setting up activity reports, to catch your mistakes and fix them. The reason my online backup wasn’t working was that I changed the name of the folder I was backing up and hadn’t changed the folder location in the online backup service as well.

Spend the five minutes it takes and set up activity reports to monitor your online backup service. You can thank me later!



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