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Computer Equipment Preparedness Checklist

Arbra Calvert

Hurricane season is June through November.  Make sure your business' computer equipment is taken care of with this checklist provided by Arbra Calvert, Pro IT Services & Support...

1. ENSURE YOU HAVE A BACKUP

  • Don't wait until the day before a hurricane to backup your files! It’s a good practice to frequently backup your data files to an external drive or memory key to prevent loss of data, as well as to store it and/or a copy in a separate, secure, safe place. Print a copy of your important/emergency contacts and take them with you in the event that you do not have access to them from your phone or computer.

2. SECURE YOUR EQUIPMENT

  • Before you start, take pictures of your equipment and their connections (not just for insurance purposes, but also to remind you of where everything plugs back into).
  • Computers:
    • Shutdown the computer(s).
    • If your computer(s) are connected to a surge protector or UPS – turn off the surge protector then unplug the surge protector or UPS from the wall outlet and leave everything else connected.
    • If no surge protector or UPS – unplug the power cables from the wall outlet (or back of the computer if wall outlet is not accessible).
    • Unplug the Ethernet cable from back of computer or docking station if you do not have access to your network Router.
    • If there is a possibility that your roof would leak, cover your equipment with waterproof material.
    • If there is a possibility of flooding, move equipment to a table or counter high enough to prevent damage.
  • Network Equipment (Modems, Routers and Switches):
    • If your network equipment is connected to a surge protector or UPS – turn off the surge protector then unplug the surge protector or UPS from the wall outlet.
    • If no surge protector or UPS – unplug the power cables from the wall outlet (or back of the equipment if wall outlet is not accessible).
    • Optional: If you have a cable modem or DSL modem, consider unplugging the coax cable or DSL connection line coming from your internet provider from back of that piece of equipment.
    • If there is a possibility that your roof would leak, cover your equipment with waterproof material.
    • If there is a possibility of flooding, move equipment to a table or counter high enough to prevent damage.
  • Printers:
    • Power off the printer.
    • If connected to a surge protector - unplug the surge protector from the wall outlet (or unplug power cable from the surge protector if wall outlet not accessible).
    • If no surge protector – unplug the power cable from the wall outlet (or back of the printer if wall outlet is not accessible).
    • If your printer has an Ethernet cable, unplug the Ethernet cable from the back of the printer if you do not have access to your network Router.
    • Unplug phone cable from the back of the printer (if fax line connected).
    • If there is a possibility that your roof would leak, cover your equipment with waterproof material.
    • If there is a possibility of flooding, move equipment to a table or counter high enough to prevent damage.

AFTER THE STORM

  • Before reconnecting your equipment, make certain that the power grid seems stable without power surges, spikes and sags (not as much of an issue if you have computer grade UPS’s):
    • Although you can hook your equipment back up in different sequences, it is recommended to start by plugging in and powering on your UPS’s, then the cable or DSL modem, the router (if separate), followed by network switches.
    • Then reconnect Computers and printers.
Arbra Calvert

Arbra Calvert is the President/CEO of Pro I.T. Services & Support
www.proitsands.com

Pro IT