Over the last 15 years I always was afraid of losing my files. Diskettes? I always knew they would fail as soon as I wouldn't expect they fail. CDs and DVDs? They are more reliable, but Ooops! it happened that the most important CD had fallen and "Voilà" now I own a circular risk! Hard drives? Suddenly a blackout happened and for my surprise the no-break (actually the battery) had already reached its lifetime and I hadn't noted before. Then when the system come back on line I scanned the disk and surprise! an infinity number of failed clusters. Finally, no more headache! I put all my files into the cloud. I have a number of services, the free one and the payed one, but for me is a good thing my files aren't centralized. Centralized or not, I think that the cloud is a better solution.
As a very simple solution, I like the Seagate Replica. It will backup your entire system. If your computer hard drive fails you can put in another drive of equal or larger size and get back to where you were. It works in the background to boot. Seagate may not be selling this anymore but the backup software was from Rebit so you could buy any USB external drive and still use the software. Here is a link to an article on Tom's Hardware about the Replica. http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/hdd-backup-recovery,2450.html
Use *all* of your options, and make sure that at least one copy is physically transported off-site.
We also use Carbonite, and can testify that their cloud service genuinely saved our butts after a disaster.
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