About once a month, on average, we get a request from a customer to re-supply some or all of their past purchases, usually because they have upgraded to a new computer and they don't have any backup of our programs. I wonder how they manage with all the other software they've bought, and all the valuable data they had on the old computer?

So this is a plea: please, PLEASE, take backup seriously!

In the last 30 or so years we've twice had a hardware failure that made everything on our main computer inaccessible. The first time, with lip service paid to backup every week or so, it took about a week to recover, though nothing vital was lost; the second time, with a disciplined approach to backup at the end of every day, it took just 20 minutes to get a second PC updated and ready to use.

There are many ways to do backup, with cheap large USB hard drives probably the best. Some of these come with software that makes the backup process completely automatic. Here we use a freeware program called FreeFileSync, which gives us control over what is backed up and when, so that some stuff is backed up daily and some weekly. It also makes it easy for us to travel with a laptop that is completely up to date, and then to update the desktop when we return.

I'm sure most of you have other files that are also important, but at the very least, please keep a CD copy of your SIAM folder, and update it when you buy a new game.