5 Google Drive tips to help you prevent disasters

Rafael Henrique/SOPA Photographs/LightRocket by way of Getty Photographs

Ten years in the past, catastrophe struck my Google Drive folders. I used to be utilizing a third-party app to again up a specific folder — a folder that housed each single considered one of my e book manuscripts — and one thing went terribly fallacious. With the unintentional examine of a field, that folder was deleted on Google Drive. Though that was dangerous sufficient, the identical folder on my native drive was deleted as properly.

Sure, it was a catastrophe, one which I might have prevented had I not clicked a single checkbox in an app.

Additionally: How Google Drive’s new ‘Home’ page makes it easier to find what you’re looking for

Fortuitously, after an hour on the telephone with Google, they had been capable of restore the folder. Since then, I have been very cautious about which third-party apps I exploit and the way I exploit them.

If you wish to keep away from having to spend a day sweating out whether or not or not you’ll ever see these irreplaceable recordsdata once more, learn on as a result of I’ve a couple of ideas that may assist. 

Are you prepared?

1. Use a robust password

Though this tip will not make it easier to recuperate misplaced recordsdata or maintain you from deleting one thing you should not, it’s going to actually assist forestall somebody from getting access to your Drive account and taking or studying these recordsdata at will. When creating a brand new password for Google Drive, use a password manager and have it create a random password that’s a minimum of twelve characters lengthy and unimaginable (or a minimum of very difficult) to memorize. The stronger the password, the much less doubtless somebody will achieve entry to your account.

Additionally: The best password managers you can buy

On the identical time, I’d suggest you take into account adding two-factor authentication into the combo, which provides yet one more layer of safety to your Google account.

2. Undergo Drive and never Docs

This tip would possibly sound counter-intuitive or the obvious factor on the earth (relying on how you’ve got been utilizing Google) however I recommend you all the time undergo Drive — and never Docs — to create your paperwork. Why? As a result of whenever you undergo Docs, you’ll be able to’t shortly place a doc the place you need it. In Drive, you’ll be able to navigate to a folder, click on New, after which create the doc, realizing it’s going to exist in that folder. In Docs, you create a brand new file and it’ll default to the foundation folder, the place you then have to recollect to enter Drive and transfer it the place you want it. In the event you maintain forgetting to maneuver these recordsdata, you will wind up with a chaotic mess of paperwork in your root folder, which could lead on you to by chance deleting the file you most want.

Additionally: How to organize your Google Drive: 5 tips and tricks to know

On the identical time, bear in mind — nonetheless you select to arrange your folders — to ascertain a logical construction that makes it very straightforward to know the place your recordsdata are situated.

Talking of which…

3. Use the model historical past

You are going to make errors in your paperwork. Typically, these errors will be appreciable. If you’ve gone down the fallacious rabbit gap in a doc, you could be tempted to chuck it into the trash and begin over. Do not. As a substitute, lean into Google Drive’s version history, which allows you to revert a doc to a earlier state. As a substitute of dropping all of these fastidiously chosen phrases from again when the doc made sense…revert, revert, revert.

Additionally: How Google Drive’s new ‘Home’ page makes it easier to find what you’re looking for

One of many good issues about Google’s model historical past (in addition to it being very straightforward to make use of) is that it will possibly save quite a few cases of a doc from the time it was first created to the final edit. This function has saved my disguise on many events.

4. Again up

It ought to go with out saying that you should again up your Drive account. Or, a minimum of again up the folders that include the extra essential recordsdata. In the event you all the time have an up-to-date native backup, ought to one thing go fallacious, you’ll be able to all the time add the folder again to Google Drive. 

The way you again up your Google Drive folder will rely in your working system. In the event you use MacOS or Home windows, you need to use the official Drive app. The issue with the official Drive app is that you just can’t choose which folder from Google Drive to again up, which implies it may again up all the things in your Drive account. That is superb if you do not have a considerable amount of information to again up.

Additionally: Need to manage your Google Drive data? Google was no help, but this tool solved my storage mess

If, nonetheless, the contents of Google Drive would gobble up all your native storage, you could possibly choose to make use of an answer like Insync, which lets you choose a folder (or a number of folders) from Drive to maintain in sync in your native machine.

Don’t put this off. Ought to catastrophe strike (akin to what occurred to me), a backup can save your sanity.

5 Lock recordsdata

The Lock Recordsdata function will not forestall you from by chance deleting recordsdata from Drive however it’s going to maintain undesirable customers from altering the contents of these recordsdata. As soon as you’ve got locked a file, nobody can edit or remark till it’s unlocked. Even higher, solely these customers with Editor permissions can unlock a file. It is a small step you’ll be able to take to guard these valuable recordsdata from being modified. 

To lock a file, right-click the entry in Google Drive and choose File Data > Lock. Within the ensuing pop-up, click on Lock and the file is protected from change and can stay so till it’s unlocked.

Additionally: Multi-factor authentication: How to enable 2FA and boost your security

With a modicum of warning, your Google Drive expertise will be free from disaster. After all, nothing is 100%, however should you comply with these easy ideas, you are one step forward of errors, undesirable entry, or different disasters inside your Drive account.

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