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Many of you are getting new computers and they don’t come with a 3˝” floppy drive. Instead you have a CD drive and USB Port. We are getting several inquiries on how to back up PcMars data. Here is a general review on our suggestions for backing up your data.
Ř1. Our number one suggestion for backing up your data would be to use a “flash drive/memory stick/memory pen”. The price will range from $20—$200 depending on how much memory you decide to purchase. 256Meg would hold about 170 sets of PcMars books. The procedure to use a “flash drive is to insert the pen drive in the external USB port and select that drive from the “Compressed (Zip) File” in your PcMars program OR “Backup for the Consultant”. These removable drives hold a lot of data and can be used over and over without losing data you already have backed up.
Ř2. Even though your new computer didn’t come with a floppy drive, some users are purchasing an external drive that connects through the USB port. If you still have a 3˝” drive and are using at least the PcMars 2.0.8 version
or newer, you have the ability to “compress (zip) file” your data to your 3˝” floppy drive. This will compress your set of books into a “zipped” folder and copy it to your 3˝” floppy drive very quickly and will only use one disk as compared to the conventional method of backing up directly to the “A:\” drive which can be time consuming and sometimes use more than one disk.
Just remember—if you do use a floppy drive:
A). Format them on your computer prior to using them.
B). Floppies wear out! Make sure to replace and rotate numerous backups. Floppies are becoming cheaper and seem to be unreliable if used over and over.
C). Make sure to test your backup!
Ř3. Backing up to CD’s. There are two types of CD’s—CD-RW (read/writeable) or CD-R (read only).
RW—These can be used as R or RW. The advantage of an RW is it can be used just as a big floppy disc and used to backup your data through your PcMars program. The formatting process has to be done through your CD burning software. Make sure you understand your burning software! The disadvantage to this process is since your computer formatted the RW, many times other computers cannot read the data.
R—The advantage of an R is it can be read 99.9% of the time on all CD drives assuming you “finalized” your CD. (This term differs depending on your burning software). This is what you should use for your permanent backup. The disadvantage to this procedure is that you need to do this through your CD burning software—not through your PcMars backup procedure.
Keep Detailed Notes
In Your PcMars
An easy tool most people are unaware of in the PcMars program is the Notepad. The Notepad is a basic text editor that you can use to create simple notes.
When you need to enter more information than you can fit into the “Memo” or “Description” line on a specific transaction, the “Note pad” can be very useful to keep that additional information.
It’s also handy to write any questions you might have for your tax preparer/consultant.
Any notes written in your PcMars program will be printed on the “Year End Detail/Tax Prep” report along with other information when “Include cover sheet (business info and notes)” option is selected.