When the first computer debuted for the public, most people used it as a form of communication. When emails made it to computers, the communication world was opened even more. You can reach anyone around the world. All that’s needed is one account. Or more. Today, you can choose from different email providers like Zoho, Gmail, Proton, Outlook, Yahoo, and more.
Like our documents, photos, videos, and other media content, programs and software, our emails can be just as important. They are forms of documented conversations between two parties that can come handy and helpful one day. Therefore, they should be stored in another storage device or the cloud as well. Simply put, emails are important too and should be backed up.
Storing your email archives for a long time can be done in different ways. There’s external storage, network, or cloud. Let’s take a look at each of them.
External storage includes external storage devices such as USB, memory cards, external SSD, or the more popular and widely used external hard drive. They are more popular because they offer large storage capacity, portability, and efficiency at a relatively affordable price.
External hard drives are easy to use too. But they can be prone to physical damage.
External hard drives are an attractive solution to long term data storage needs because of the extreme ease of use. In nearly all cases, all you need to do is to plug the hard drive into your computer with a USB cable and the drive is displayed to you in the file manager. From this point, all you need to do is to drag and drop your data files, such as your email archives, directly to this drive and they are copied. The only possible concerns for these devices arise if you travel with them or move them around often. There is only one hard drive inside and the reliability of that hard drive depends on the precision of the mechanical parts of the drive being able to read the disk. Dropping the drive can cause internal mechanical damage which, in some cases, can result in loss of your data.
Saving through a network, or more commonly called Network Attached Storage (NAS) is another way. But it can be complicated.
Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices are a bit more complex than simple USB-based external hard drives. This is because NAS devices include the ability to connect to your home’s network using either Wi-Fi or Ethernet and then to offer data archive access for any computer connected to your home network. Such devices can be made more reliable than an external hard drive because you can configure some models into various RAID options to minimize the risk of data loss. A RAID configuration is one in which each disk in a multiple-disk system is a backup for its partners; if one disk fails, its data can be recovered from another. It also possible to create a NAS solution yourself if you have a desktop computer in your home with an internal hard drive bay that is not being used. Adding an inexpensive hard drive to such a machine is a solution you can consider if you like the idea of a NAS device, but perhaps do not like the added expense.
Through the cloud.
Internet cloud storage options are a popular storage solution because these services can be accessed from any Web browser on nearly any type of device. Additionally, some services such as Dropbox and Box.net also provide apps for smartphones to make it easier to access your data. Many of these services provide some base level of free storage and also offer larger storage limits for a subscription fee. The benefit to using these services beyond ease of access is that your data is stored securely on a remote server. In an unforeseen catastrophe such as a home fire or theft of your devices, having your data stored on a remote server would be invaluable.
And of course, web email. Emails today are done and stored on the web.
If you are using a Web email service such as mMail, Yahoo Mail or Outlook.com, you already have a significant amount of free storage. With as much storage as these services offer for free, it is likely you can store years of emails without the need to delete messages or to worry about archiving old messages to external storage. Like the cloud-based storage options, many of these email providers offer additional storage for a fee, which can be useful if you routinely transfer large files in your emails.
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