Some basic housekeeping you should do before upgrading to Windows 8 or Mountain Lion.
Microsoft has announced Windows 8 is coming in October. Apple will be updating OS X in the coming weeks. Are you ready?
Microsoft has announced that Windows 8 will be available to consumers on October 28. Apple's latest version of OS X, codenamed Mountain Lion, will hit the market any day now - as early as next week if the rumour sites have it right.
So, what should you do in preparation?
Rule number 1: Backup your entire system. Not just work documents but every file so that all of your settings and configuration files are safe as well.
Rule number 2: Test the backup. Make sure you recover individual files. If possible, try to restore your entire to another computer.
Rule number 3: See Rule number 1.
The best preparation we can recommend is to take a two pronged approach. Each requires an external hard drive.
Time Machine makes regular Mac backups exceptionally easy. Your entire system is backed regularly without any intervention on your part.
Secondly, before upgrading your system, clone your whole system to an external drive. We'd suggest using either SuperDuper or Carbon Copy Cloner.
We'd start with the same advice as Mac users. Regular, daily (at least) of your system are the basis of any sound backup strategy. Fortuantely, Windows 8 will make that easy but until then, you'll need either use the Windows 7 backup utility or some third-party backup software.
Before the upgrade, use a cloning tool like Acronis True Image or Norton Ghost to copy everything from your hard drive to an external drive.