You know what they say about making backups of your data – it might seem like a chore or even burdensome for most of us, but it is an essential part of your tech lifestyle. After all, digital files are nothing like hardcopies of your bank statements – once they’re gone (the original and only copy), then that’s that. There’s no way of retrieving it for the average user, unlike shredded paper that can still be painstakingly (and with plenty of patience) put back together. Heck, even Humpty Dumpty would have a better chance of being whole again.

Having said that, how many of us religiously follow our own backup schedules? Since the year is coming to a close, maybe you would like to take the opportunity to review how your backup system is working and see whether there are ways to improve on it? Lexar, a name that is synonymous with flash memory and backup products, sent us a copy of their Lexar Echo ZX backup drive (16GB), and here’s a belated write-up on it.

I would say if you want people to make backups, then make it easy and painless to do so. There are many one-touch backup systems in the market already, but most of these involve hard drives, but what happens when you’re dealing with someone who does not have that much data to backup? You can either take the cloud storage route, or stash your Word documents and Excel spreadsheets onto a USB flash drive that is easy to tote around, and I think the Lexar Echo ZX fits this niche perfectly.

Specially built for netbooks and notebooks, the Lexar Echo ZX is extremely small – smaller than a quarter actually, where it can be permanently lodged in your USB port if you so desire so that the built-in software will be able to perform ongoing backup of designated files automatically. Basically, each time you plug it in, the software will be activated so as to secure and protect your files using 128-bit AES encryption.

Depending on your needs, you can choose from 8GB, 16GB, and 32GB capacities for the Echo ZX, where read speeds max out at 28MB/s with 15MB/s as the top write speed, but performance of course varies depending on the system and kind of file transferred. Playing nice with PC and Mac platforms, the 8GB, 16GB and 32GB models will retail for $29.99, $54.99 and $99.99, respectively.

There is just one thing I’d like to point out though – being so small, you’re better off leaving it plugged in, and make sure you do not lose the cover to the USB connector, although that is most likely to happen since you would have no need for it unless you want to use the Echo ZX elsewhere when traveling. Having said that, I wonder why bother with such a huge package (relatively speaking, of course), as Lexar can opt to go green and minimize on their packaging by including digital versions of the drive’s information inside. That would mean maximizing each shipment since you can then pack in more Lexar Echo ZX’s in a single shipment box than ever before.

Students and perhaps bloggers who do not have that much information to backup on a hard drive might want to give this a go as it offers the perfect balance between portability and cost.

Filed in Computers. Read more about Lexar, Storage and USB.

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