Backing up your Facebook data
(October-28-09)


With cloud computing becoming more and more prevalent the idea of how we manage and backup our data is pretty important. Some times the stuff we put in a cloud saves us when we lose it from our harddrives, but what about all that stuff that we put out there to be shared or for others to consume... like our Facebook data. What if one day you woke up and your account was gone? suspended or just simply the site was blocking you from getting to that picture of your little niece taking her first steps? or your company's Page with all your painstaking work stored there?

A long time ago I learned the hard way about backing up my data. Now there's a great tool out there to help with backing up our Facebook data, - Archive Facebook, a Firefox extension.

FB_backup--1-.png

Archive Facebook is not perfect in the sense that it will not allow you restore your data to Facebook, nor will it capture posts and comments made but your friends, but it will let you capture your data to your local hard drive and browse this data as if it were a local copy of Facebook.

It will let you backup:

  • Photos
  • Messages
  • Friends lists
  • Events
  • Activity Stream
  • Notes
  • Groups
  • Info

There's one other catch. You must have a Facebook Username or "vanity" URL for your profile. If you don't have one it only takes a second to get one for your profile. So once you can access your profile via http://www.facebook.com/yourName you're ready to download the Firefox extension and get backed up.

Two notes for ease of backing up

There is a conflict with the Scrapbook Firefox extension, so disable that first. (You can turn it back on when you're finished.)

Depending on the amount of activity in your Facebook Profile, you may encounter some difficulties with the backup - remember this is still new. So should you find that the program is getting hung up on a particular event - not progressing in the retrieval process - then click Pause and then Start to resume.

If you know of other methods of backing up Facebook or any of our other data we post in the cloud, let me know about it.

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