Data redundancy is defined as securing your valuable data so it is less likely to be lost by ensuring there are at least two copies on two independent systems. This way, if one system fails, no data is lost. This is a vital concept to both understand and practice, as projects and assignments may represent massive hours of work. This work is far too valuable to be compromised by a simple mistake, error, or hardware failure.
Use a consistent file naming convention with the date so you know which copies of your file are current. For example, call the project file clown_face_3d_may12.3ds since it identifies the subject matter, date, and uses underscores to ensure the title reads the same on any operating system.
Purchase and use flash memory (memory key, USB drive, memory stick, thumb drive). You should have as much of your project saved on flash memory as possible (depending project size).
If a project cannot fit on flash-based media, purchase and use an external, portable hard drive. Any USB 2.0 portable hard drive will do, but it is recommended that you purchase a portable or ‘ruggedized’ hard drive that can withstand the wear and tear of being carried around.
When affordable, in addition to your mobile hard drive for current work, it is best that you also have a backup hard drive on which to save a second copy of all your course work. The backup hard drive should be updated at least twice per week, but updating it daily is the safest solution.
Files can be temporarily saved on the D:\ drive of computers in B5 labs or W700B, but this storage is not secure and files can be accessed and deleted by other users. Computer lab hard drives are erased at the end of each semester so make sure to archive files you want kept before the end of the semester. Smaller files can be stored on the P:\ network drive (each student is assigned space on this drive). Network drives are backed-up by IT, however, any files stored on these drives use up your total quota of storage space.
If all students practice proper data redundancy, many difficulties can be avoided, and it becomes much less likely that you’ll lose data or assignments.