Preparing for a Computer-less Age

What would you do without your computer, be it a PC, MAC or Linux machine? You certainly wouldn’t be reading this post, would you? Or any other post – anywhere.

Or ….. would you?

Today, you likely popped onto the net and did a few searches and found this wonderful place. You read a few things and made some mental notes. You also could be reading this as part of a printout of items you thought necessary to keep. Many preppers save copies of posts as files on their hard drives. “For later reference” they say.  “Just in case the net goes down.” But what would they do if the net and any computers they normally use took a “dump”?

The only way you would ever again get to see the priceless information you stored on your hard drive was if you had a HARD COPY of it. Printouts. Folders and binders and paper, preferably double-sided prints to save on bulk. Information in hand is, in some scenarios, the most valuable.

There are other ways to save your precious data for later retrieval. Some preppers keep CDs of their manuals, posts, articles, web sites and more. These CDs can be read by any working machine they happen across. They might also be read by a small cheap laptop or notebook that has been secured from EMP in a properly prepared ammo can. But the only sure way to have access is to rely on nothing other than some paper and your own two eyeballs.

Classify your saved info by type and priority. Begin transferring to paper using that list. At some point you’ll have it all, or at least all of what you deem to be essential. If you don’t, you’ll be working hard to save things like I am tonight… in the midst of an effort to clean up one of our machines that was slapped by a trojan, in a root kit, in an innocuous download with such cunning cover that our anti-virus, anti-malware and firewall protection failed to stop it. If the drive was toasted, we would be looking at something very similar to what was described above. As it is, I think we will survive.

What might kill us, though, would be…

  • EMP attack
  • Nuclear attack
  • Massive power surges and disruptions
  • Computer warfare
  • Engineered viral attacks on whole national networks
  • Cyber-epidemics

Got data?  Save it.

  • Backups (in house)
  • Multiple copies on  multiple drives, USB thumb drives and CDs
  • Off site storage (physical backups  stored elsewhere)
  • Hard copies (printouts)

Be sure that you also keep your anti-whatever software, and your operating system, UPDATED. It will make recoveries easier, and might prevent the need to do a complete wipe and restore.

As for storage on the actual hard drive, consider placing everything under one major sub-directory. If everything were stored under “My Info”, with useful sub-directories beneath that, a simple data backup would be to command the archiving of all information within and below “My Info”. Your programs will remember where this and that were stored, but if you have to try and figure it out without the help of your operating system, good luck.

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