HOW TO USE: Beginner / File Backup
HOW TO USE: Many Ways to Back Up Your Files -- and Many Ways to Lose Them!
Read this and obey! The frustration you avoid not having to reenter lost
files will pay for your subscription many times over!
By Hal Goldstein
By now you have experienced how the HP 95LX Palmtop makes your life easier
and more productive. Wherever you go you have a searchable phone book,
an appointment book with to-do list, key notes from meetings, important
spreadsheets and equations. Miraculously, all that information is stored
in your pocket or purse and accessed with a few key strokes.
Then one day you discover that your phone book is gone, your notes are
missing, your spreadsheet data has disappeared, or you lost all of your
appointments. Your Palmtop PC marvel has turned to a nightmare.
I would wager that each of the thousands of people reading these words
have lost information on their palmtop or desktop computer -- maybe a few
words, maybe entire databases of information. Ask any computer expert and
he'll tell you that the experience of losing data does not go away as you
learn more about computers.
The real expert has developed a systematic procedure whereby he backs
up his data frequently. The worst case is that he loses an hour or two
of work. If you don't back up the information you generate on your 95LX,
it's only a matter of time before you lose something through your error,
or the computer's error.
How Can I Lose My Work? Let Me Count the Ways ...
The purpose of this section IS to scare you! If you do not understand
some of the concepts, reread previous Getting Started columns, check your
manual, ask a friend, or purchase a basic book on computers.
Here are some of the ways you can lose information on your HP 95LX through
your own folly.
Here are some more ways that the Palmtop itself, or software running on
it, can cause you to lose information. (However, you may have some part
to play in it. The HP 95LX is a robust, well-tested machine of superior
quality. Avoid the self-defeating habit of "blaming the machine" and not
analyzing your role in a mishap.)
1. You do not save or update your MEMO, APPT, PHONE, 1-2-3, or HP CALC
file when you exit the application normally, or when your system locks
up and you must reboot (by pressing (CTRL)-(ALT) (DEL)).
2. You lose all battery power (for example, by leaving your HP 95LX idle
for a long time or by ignoring the bad or missing backup battery message).
3. You save a file using the name of a file that already exists. The initial
file is overwritten and lost.
4. When trying to save new work, you run out of disk space and have nothing
you can delete from FILER.
5. You delete a file by mistake.
6. You drop your HP 95LX.
7. You lose your HP 95LX.
8. You forget what you named a file and in what directory you put it.
9. You let your RAM card battery run out.
10. You inadvertently remove your RAM card battery.
11. You lose or remove the "device driver" files that allow you to access
your ACE Double Card, Stacked RAM card, or SUNDISK Flash Card.
12. You let someone mess around with your HP 95LX.
13. Bugs in the built-in programs or built-in DOS.
14. Bugs in the HP 95LX firmware or hardware.
15. Running DOS programs or TSR's not designed with the HP 95LX in mind.
16. Exiting programs incorrectly.
17. Exposing your HP 95LX or RAM card to a very strong electromagnetic
18. Exposing your data to a virus.
Even though Palmtops are handy at storing and manipulating data, given
the many ways you can lose valuable information, why would any sane person
want to depend on one? THE ANSWER: It only makes sense if you regularly
(hourly, daily, or weekly) back up all important information.
What follows are general backup strategies. For more details, check
past or future issues of The HP Palmtop Paper or manuals. Because backup
is so crucial, you will find reference if not full-fledged articles on
backup in almost every The HP Palmtop Paper issue.
RAM Card Backup Strategies
The optional RAM card provides an easy means to backup your most critical
C drive work. However, remember that the RAM card itself needs to be backed
These drives normally connect to an IBM compatible PC and look like a normal
disk drive to a PC. To back up files first make sure all important files
are copied the RAM card from the HP 95LX. Put the RAM card in the RAM card
drive and copy the RAM card files to the PC's hard disk or floppy disk
using simple DOS Copy commands from the PC.
1. Use FILER to copy crucial files such as main PHONE and APPT books, key
spreadsheets to the A: RAM drive. (Remember the built-in applications normally
store files in the C:\_DAT directory or in the case of 1-2-3 the C:\ directory.)
2. Purchase a RAM Card drive (see Databook or Adtron ads this issue, check
Third Party Products sections in back issues).
PC Backup Strategies
Because of the dangers cited previously, even if you do not own another
computer or a RAM card you should develop backup strategies that employ
a combination of the items listed below.
3. Purchase The HP Connectivity Pack (part # HP F1001A). Use the Pack's
cabling. Then follow instructions to backup files from the HP 95LX and
PC using the FILER program on both the PC and the 95LX.
4. Run The HP Connectivity Pack DOS Connect program on both the 95LX (DCS95)
and the PC (DC95) to make the 95LX disks directly accessible from the PC.
Use the DOS COPY or XCOPY commands to backup up HP 95LX files to the PC.
5. MAC users can purchase the DataViz or Sparcom, Mac to HP 95LX connectivity
programs (see ad this issue).
6. Windows users can use IntelliLink or Sparcom Connectivity pro grams.
7. Purchase the HP 82222A Serial Interface Cable for a PC or HP 82223A
Cable for the MAC. Use communications software on the desktop and built-in
COMM on the HP 95LX. Use XMODEM or KERMIT protocol.
8. With the HP2222A Serial Interface Cable on both the PC and HP 95LX run
ZIP.COM, a communications program supplied on The HP Palmtop Paper's free
1992 Subscribers Disk. If you only have an HP 95LX
Similarly, borrow a friend's modem connected using the above cabling. Use
built-in COMM to send key files via a phone line to a PC with a modem and
communications software running.
9. Create duplicate copies of your most important files such as your PHONE
and APPT books. Copy the files to a different directory (for example, use
FILER to copy your main PHONE .PBK file from the C:\_DAT directory to the
10. Purchase an HP 82222A Serial Interface Cable and a high density floppy
disk. Make arrangements with a friend with a PC to borrow it for 10 minutes
per week. Use one of the methods described above to back up files to the
11. Purchase the HP 82224A Serial Cable Adapter Kit, along with the HP
82222A Serial Interface Cable. Borrow a printer from a friend to create
a "hard copy" of each of your most important files. You can print from
your friend's PC. If the printer has a serial port, you can print directly
from the 95LX to the printer using the cabling described above.
12. Purchase an external 3 " floppy drive designed to work with the HP
95LX such as the Sparcom Drive95. Backup 95LX files to a disk in Drive95
Make one of these strategies work for you. If you are a complete novice
(we all were at one time), make backup a priority. Grab a computer-literate
friend, study back issues of The HP Palmtop Paper, read the manual ...
do whatever it takes to develop a practical, consistent backup strategy.
And to those of you with computer experience, don't let a few months
without data loss problems lull you into complacency. Backup your data
now and develop a procedure for regular backups.
Notice about Palmtop.net
Palmtop Network with its S.U.P.E.R. (Simply
Unbeatable Palmtop Essentials Repository) software is now
available under the domain name of
|We buy used palmtops,
working or broken: HP 200LX, HP 100LX and 1000CX.