Backing Up Data

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ComQuest Backup options


One of the unfortunate realities of the computer age is that things do occasionally break.  These things sometimes include hard disk drives.  For this reason, it's advisable to back up your ComQuest data files on a regular basis.  The program files can always be reloaded into the system, but if you don't have floppy disk backup of the data files (Songs, Scores, Respondents, etc.) that information will be lost forever.



Making a backup


There are two types of backups you can make in ComQuest:


Data Files Only (Express Backup).  This produces the fastest and smallest backups.  If you don't intend to restore this backup, and are making it only for safety/archival reasons, Express is the option you should select.  All ComQuest Data Files (without the keys) are backed up into a file called DATA.ZIP


Data And Keys (Full Backup).  If you're going to restore the backup onto another computer, it is faster to backup all the Data and Keys files, rather than just backing up the Data files and having to rebuild all the keys when restoring the backup.  All ComQuest Data And Keys files are backed up into a file called DATA.ZIP.


There are also options you can choose as a destination:


The hard drive.  If you're backing up from the Fileserver, you will see this displayed as the C:\BACKUPS drive/path.  If you're backing up from one of the Workstations, you will see the network drive/path, (usually M: or N:, etc.).  For safety/archival purposes, backing up to the hard drive is fine.  The only time this doesn't help you is if the hard drive actually fails, in which case your backup as well as all your data is actually lost.


A: Drive.  All computers have an A:\ floppy drive.  Selecting this option will utilize the PKZIP span feature to backup your files to the A:\ drive.  Span allows you to use multiple disks for larger backups, and will prompt you to change disks accordingly.


HandThe Backup utility only saves critical data files in your system. Song hooks and prompts (.WAV files) are not backed up.


How Often Should I Make Backups?


When deciding how often you should backup your data, you can easily answer that question with another question: How much work are you willing to lose?  When you are forced to revert to an archived backup (because of massive file corruption, or hard-drive failure, or theft, etc.), your callout will revert to the status of that backup.


For example, if the most recent backup you have is from a month ago, you will basically lose all work that has been performed in the ensuing month when you restore that backup.  If your backup was from yesterday, you will only lose the work that was performed since that backup was created yesterday.  Think of backups as a free insurance policy... you may never need them; but about the time you neglect to make regular backups, some catastrophe will occur that will make you wish you had them!


We also have some other options to automatically back up your data (full backups, as well as daily incremental backups) which may be more suitable for your needs, particularly if you have multiple databases and/or multiple Fileservers.  Please call ComQuest Technical Support to discuss these options with us directly.


See also

Restoring Data