If you've ever needed to wipe your hard disk completely clean and didn't have a Zip drive or other offline storage device for stashing the information, you already know what a hassle it is to back up all that data onto floppy disks.
Now there's a way to get 300 megabytes of storage for free. You can use it for whatever you like, and the uses are limited to times when you need to reformat the disk.
This storage is furnished by a Web site, so that means that your most precious information would remain safe, even if your computer were destroyed by fire. Businesses have used off-site storage for years, and the Internet is filled with sites that offer storage.
But this site is different in a couple of ways. You get the 300 megabytes of storage free, and this site is aimed directly at Macintosh owners. Simply go to the site at FreeMacSpace.com, register and the space is yours.
Here's what the site's organizer had to say:
"Virtual hard drives for the Macintosh community are a perfect match for Apple's iMac users and for the large community of designers and artists who use high-end Macs," said Ari Freeman, co-founder and chief strategic officer at FreeDiskSpace.com.
"Since the iMac, iBook, G3 and G4 computers do not ship with a floppy drive, our virtual hard drives provide these users with an easy and free solution."
The site advertises itself as a place to stash important files in case the Y2K glitch bites. But as a Macintosh owner, you are almost certainly safe. Unlike PCs, most Macs are Y2K-proof.
Working antiques like the Apple II may not be so bulletproof. Some of these machines are still doing honest work. If you're using one, you might want to back up your information, just in case.
Anyway, although you're probably safe from Y2K woes, some of you might enjoy the new year more if you've backed up your most important files and stored them away on this site.
The company also announced virtual hard drives at separate sites for other systems including PC, Linux and personal digital assistants.