Back it up! No, I’m not talking about the RV. With the high speeds of modern Internet, many companies are allowing—and even encouraging—their employees to telecommute or work remotely. This is perfect for full-time RVers who often relocate throughout the year.However, with a new work environment comes new obstacles. For example, a reliable Internet signal is never a complete guarantee; without which, working is nearly impossible. Plus, how do you ensure the safety of your work? It’s very frustrating to complete an assignment just to discover that you’ve lost it all. There are several methods to secure your projects.
Install Good Virus Protection
Although many campgrounds advertise that the offer free Internet, any RVer can attest that is often an exaggeration. Although there may be Wi-Fi, it’s often slow and the signal strength depends on where you are in relation to the router and how many other campers are using it. Additionally, Mi-Fi reception is often hampered by heavy tree coverage. Occasionally, to meet deadlines, you might need to visit a coffee shop—or other establishment—with Internet access.When using public networks, it is much more likely that your computer will be exposed to malware and viruses. Therefore, it’s essential to have protection like Kaspersky. You can’t work on your computer if it’s out of commission.
Save Often and Backup Daily
Although of course you should regularly save your work, you can’t count on the internal hard drive to keep your projects safe.
For example, in what was practically a comedy of errors, I left my lap top sitting on top of the dining table. During the night, we experienced a downpour to the extent that our RV window leaked allowing water to run onto my computer and into its protective case. It was in the shop for over two weeks. Fortunately, they salvaged all my files. In the meantime, however, I was working on a different computer and had to recreate several days-worth of finished but un-submitted articles. If I had backed up to an external hard drive, I would have had all those pieces at my disposal.
Wired, USB Hard Drive, or USB Thumb Drive
Plugging your external storage directly into your computer is one option, but it comes with a few drawbacks that make it less than optimal in a mobile living situation. For example, unless you make permanent changes to your RV—like drilling holes and running cords—to keep your hard drive stable, there’s going to be the inconvenience of dealing with the wires.
Plus, either you have to pack it up before each move or you risk damaging the device due to possible knocks and falls that it incurs during transportation. Thumb drives, on the other hand hold much less data and can be easily lost, which entirely defeats the purpose of using them.
Dropbox and Cloud Services
Fortunately, it’s now possible to work and store your files in the cloud. Whether you use OneDrive for Microsoft Office, Google Drive, iCloud, or Dropbox, this method ensures that you have access to your work from any computer. This is often essential.
Personally, I’ve had many times that—for one reason or another—I couldn’t get online on my computer, but I had no trouble with my smartphone. In these cases, if I’d placed my documents in a cloud, I could still edit them and send them via email.
Truly, the only downside I can think of is that they do use up your data. Therefore, in my opinion, it’s a good idea to use a variety of methods.
Backup to Wireless Hard Drives
These devices use Wi-Fi to connect to your computer, store your documents, and back up your information. Basically, they protect your files from total loss and provide a means to contain all your data in one area. You can transfer info from one computer to another and even access it from your smartphone.
Here are a few of the more popular options:
- Apple Time Capsule ME177LL/A
- Lenovo ThinkPad Stack
- SanDisk Connect Wireless Media Device
- Seagate STCV2000100
- Toshiba Canvio AeroCast 1TB
- Western Digital My Passport
Perhaps the best aspect of using a wireless hard drive is that as long as it is connected to your home Wi-Fi, you can access its contents from anywhere. You can secure the device—keeping it safe from knocks and falls that wired devices experience—and work outside at your favorite campground picnic table.
The modern work landscape is changing and with a greater number of Americans working from home, employment opportunities for full-time RVers continue to increase. No one wants to lose all their hard work and by using one—or a combination—of these methods you can to ensure your files are safe and accessible wherever you may roam.