One of our teachers asked me for advice on what hard drive to get at home to backup pictures, documents, music, etc. She has an Apple laptop from school, so if your family has Windows users you might skip the first recommendation and go to the second one. This is what I emailed her.
If you want a less expensive but still good option, a couple weeks ago I purchased a 1 TB Western Digital My Passport Ultra hard drive for $70. Amazon sells this for $66, they also sell another version for $59. It’s best to reformat these drives (they ship formatted as “NTFS”) to the “MacOS Extended” format first. This tutorial explains how.
$70 for 1 terabyte USB 3.0 external hard drives at @Walmart #SignOfTheTimes pic.twitter.com/exRdxZfBrZ
— Wesley Fryer, Ph.D. (@wfryer) September 13, 2015
You can alternatively go with a cloud-based backup storage option. Carbonite is the one my parents use, but it requires a monthly or annual subscription free. This is the safest option in the event of fire or tornado, since your backup is offsite/in the cloud.
This is a 9 minute video I made a couple weeks ago discussing these and other backup options, which might also be helpful:
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I use a 3 TB WD Mycloud drive. It has an ethernet port for direct connection to the router. It also has a USB port for connecting a 1TB backup drive. WD included a backup option to Dropbox. Since We have more photos than anything else, I backup all our photos to Google Photos and back up all other files to Dropbox. That way, I have 3-2-1 backup. 3 different backups in 2 different locations with 1 offsite backup.