Data Backup

Data Backup

Whether you’re a student, faculty or staff member, your data is important and needs to be backed up. Luckily, there are a variety of easy methods you can use to do this.

Cloud-Based Services

In general, cloud based services are the best and easiest way to backup your data. Some typical features include:

  • Easily access files on a variety of different devices. Internet connection is required.
  • Version history of your documents. (Not available on all services)
  • Easy to recover data on a broken device or bring data over to a new one.

There are a continually growing number of these services, all with slight variations on the features they offer. Here are some popular ones we recommend:

  • Google Drive – Your NYU NetID grants you 30 gigs of free storage through Google Drive. Navigate to to get started.
  • Dropbox – 2 gigs free to start with, and several paid tiers.. Go to to get started.
  • OneDrive – Microsoft’s entry into the cloud storage services starts you off with 7 gigs free. Check out to get started.
  • iCloud  - Apple offers a wide variety of syncing features and data backup through their iCloud service. Visit more information.

Portable media

There are several different physical options for backing up your data. For portable media, the price will depend on the size of device purchased.

  • USB Flash Drive – Typically used more for portability than reliability. It is not recommended to keep important files on flashdrives!
  • External hard drive – The standard way to backup your data without having to have an internet connection.
  • Optical media – CD/DVD drives are becoming less common on laptops. If you go with this option, capacities are CD-R (~700 MB) or DVD-R (~4.7GB).