When Backup != Backup

A quick edit after I wrote this post -> Files on Demand and Keep Offline may be the answer to the problem at hand, but this IMO this should have been asked when I set this up, not when I went searching for it. For further info, check out this link.

Another quick edit -> I’m still not satisfied with OneDrive. There are way too many opportunities for the data to just disappear. A good example is when I told OneDrive to stop syncing with my computer, and it deleted everything locally – again. I’ve decided to bite the bullet and pay a monthly fee for BackBlaze – it’s a bit heavy-handed (full system backup instead of just folders I’ve defined), but it also means I don’t have to worry if I’ve saved everything into a backed up folder on my system. And it would’ve taken care of that pesky $doge situation I found myself in a few years back.

When I had to rebuild my computer recently I was reminded of how woefully inadequate my data protection measures were. (You’d think I’d be more careful after losing $100k worth of $doge, but here we are).

I offloaded all of my data onto my NAS, which has raided drives so I’m a bit protected there – but I wanted to also have some sort of off-site backup. I opened up OneDrive, and much to my surprise, Microsoft had my back! Or so I thought.

The software was super helpful – “You already have a ton of storage, so why not back up your Pictures, Documents, and Desktop to OneDrive? Click this button – don’t worry, we’ll take care of the rest.” (I’m paraphrasing, I think it actually said “Back up data to OneDrive?”)

Seemed easy enough – I said sure, go ahead, and went to bed. The next day, all of my documents had finished being uploaded to OneDrive – perfect! Until I went to my local copies and discovered they were gone. Documents – gone. Pictures – gone. Desktop – gone. Microsoft, in its infinite wisdom, had not made a copy of my data – they’d moved the entire thing to the cloud and then nuked the original. They even went as far as mapping my Documents/Pictures/Desktop to OneDrive instead of my local NAS, so when I clicked on my favorites links, at first, everything looked ok.

Maybe I’m crazy, but when someone says “backup”, they don’t mean “snatch and grab – and then burn the house to the ground”. Thankfully, before all this started, I’d already taken backups and stashed them elsewhere. And, to be fair, Microsoft DID have a copy of my data in OneDrive. But come on Microsoft, in what world could “backup” be taken to mean “destroy the original”.

So anyway, back to the drawing board. I’m not opposed to using OneDrive – but that was supposed to be my ‘in case the house burns down’ option, not the ‘only option’ option.

Author: Greg
Middle-aged father of two - still a kid at heart! Lover of all things geeky, trivia, factoids, craft beers, and procrastination. #SnorlaxIsMySpiritAnimal. #CanadianEh! "I don't know. Fly casual."

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