With broadband you may no longer need expensive, and often rapidly obsolete back-up devices. The always-on connection and large capacity allows you to send files and emails as well as archive documents and applications – including copies of your hard drives – to other business network locations or across the Internet to secure servers. Back-ups of particularly important documents can be done on-the-fly over broadband and can also be timed to back-up folders and directories daily. If you want to manage individual files on a secure server, you can choose one of the many commercial services available on the Web – most ISPs will offer their own storage and management solutions. Once you've decided which part of your hard drive you want to back-up, you need to map it to the relevant place on your network. On PCs running Windows, simply go to Windows Explorer, select 'Tools' and then 'Map Network Drive.' This will prompt you to select a drive letter, then enter the address into the path address. The address will usually look like this: http://mybackupname.myispname.com. Ensure you have a separate password from you system password and you are up and running. With a broadband connection you can select files, folders or even entire drives and back them up, but first ensure you have enough space on the external server. You can check the volume used as it will show as a disk, similar to your volume disk maps for internal drives.

Finally, you can use products like Microsoft Backup to compress files to be backed-up, to save all files or files which have changed. It can also be set to run at intervals via the Task Scheduler. See www.microsoft.com for more details of the back-up solutions for its operating systems.