The Christmas shutdown

Tips & Hints

Avoid a New Year's hangover for your computers.

Posted 9 December, 2003

If your business shuts down for Christmas, then you have to take some precautions for the period your office will be unattended. While no one is there all sorts of things can happen to your computer equipment and data. You need to make sure both are safe.


Backup is the most basic and important thing. If your office is going to be unattended for a while, it is worthwhile to make sure your data is both backed up and quickly recoverable. We recommend three backups.

The first is to make a standard backup. Before everyone goes home, run it and make sure all your data is backed up. Make sure someone takes the backup home.

It’s possible you made need to access important files in a hurry. We recommend copying important documents and current projects, orders, etc. onto CD. Again, this CD should spend the holiday at someone’s home.

Your accounting program has a backup system. Run that backup program and make a copy of the backup. It’s worthwhile sending a copy of the backup to your accountant, just in case.

Shutdown and unplug

While the office is closed, unplug all equipment that doesn’t need to be on. This includes monitors, routers and hubs. Disconnect equipment from power, network and phone sockets.

You can safely assume printers, scanners and workstations are safe to shut down. In the case of servers, routers and Internet access equipment, you should ask your IT expert. When you restart after the holiday, you need to turn on Internet access equipment first, then routers and switches, then servers.

Internet Access

Power surges are a big threat to computers and networks. The most common damaging surges come through the phone lines. Remember to unplug all the connections including phone, cable and network cables.

Accessing mail while away

If you want to ruin your holiday by reading your office mail, it can be done. Most email services have a web mail function. Some office systems deal with their own email, ask your IT expert/ISP how to access your mail remotely.

Upgrading systems

While no-one’s around and the phones are quiet, take the opportunity to do maintenance and any software and hardware upgrades. This means minimal disruption while you get important things done on your equipment.

The Christmas holidays are the time to relax. By taking these steps, you can make sure there are fewer nasty surprises when you return from your Christmas break. Have a good Christmas and make sure your computers don’t suffer a New Year hangover.

PC Rescue Pty Ltd
Suite 236, 4 Young Street Neutral Bay NSW 2089
ABN 082 635 765
ŠTechnology Publishing Australia, 2011