I recommend every 6 months backing up your photos to removable media/hard drive. It’s a very simple process in any Windows OS.
1. Buy a good quality external hard drive or the largest flash drive available(make sure it will have enough space to accommodate your photos).
2. Navigate on your computer where your photos are stored. Open that folder, typically called Pictures (Vista) or My Photos (XP) and single left click (highlight) just one of the photos or photo folders then press Ctrl and A simultaneously, this action will highlight ALL items in the Photos folder. Right click on any of the highlighted boxes and choose COPY.
3. Navigate to the letter drive where your external HD or flash drive is (go to Start>My Computer). Double click on the letter drive of the flash or external drive right click your mouse and select New>Folder. Give your new folder an appropriate name for your photos (e.x Jan-June 2009 Photos). Double click on that folder it will be empty, right click inside that folder and choose PASTE. Your photos will now transfer over to the removable flash or external drive and be in both locations. After the progress meter shows all copying is done remember to EJECT your flash drive or external (go to icons by the clock and choose “Safely Remove Hardware” icon , double click it and choose to stop which letter drive your flash or external.