Macworld’s Christopher Breen has written an article, Preparing your Lion repair kit, discussing the tools you should have handy to resolve eventual problems with your Mac running Lion. Since Lion installs a recovery partition, you can access certain Apple tools by booting from this partition, but Breen points out that other tools are useful to have.
He discusses Apple’s Recovery Disk Assistant, a utility that lets you copy the recovery partition to another drive; he explains how to copy a full Lion installer to another disk, such as a flash drive; and he discusses other disk utilities that are good to have.
But the moral of the story, according to Breen, is that you should have a clone of your startup drive, and a backup of all your data. Intego Personal Backup, part of Intego Internet Security Barrier X6, provides both of these features. You can clone your startup volume – make a full, bootable copy of it on an external disk, so if your internal drive has a problem, you can start up your Mac from the external disk. You can also make regular, automatic backups of essential data, such as your home folder, your Documents folder, or even specific types of files.
Backing up your data is the most important task you can carry out to ensure that you don’t lose any files. Back it up regularly to be safe.