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What items do you all have for backups during trading? Trading desk, hardware, Internet, Phone, etc

I was in a trade the other day and my wireless mouse went dead, it was a quick fix and nothing detrimental happened.

I did start thinking about the possibility of other hardware failures, even software or grid failures.

This thread is an open and on-going discussion of things we can have as backups or proactive plans to have in place.

Easy Hardware Backups:

These are the obvious and crucial ones to have.

  1. Mouse - Wireless and/or wired. If you are using wireless make sure to have a different/extra dongle that is always connected separately. I have wireless and will just use another wired one as a backup.

  2. Keyboard - I’ll just be getting a cheap wired one.

  3. Monitor - The majority may have dual monitors but if you don’t, a spare one could save the day at some point. Or just a spare HDMI cable.

Other Items Backup

  1. Phone Numbers - List of numbers for brokerage, internet provider, etc.

  2. Laptop - If you have a separate laptop an easy backup could be installing Optimus on that to use if needed.

  3. Account Number - Login and password located in a secure spot. I’m bad about always having my passwords online, so if my computer goes out I need them quickly accessible.

There is a substantial risk of loss in futures trading. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The figures here represent an opinion. The placement of contingent orders by you or broker, or trading advisor, such as a “stop-loss” or “stop-limit” order, will not necessarily limit your losses to the intended amounts, since market conditions may make it impossible to execute such orders. Please conduct your own due diligence if Futures are an appropriate instrument for you.


My primary desktop platform is connected to the Internet via FTTC.

In case of failure with the primary system, I run R-Trader Pro on a virtual machine at a data centre. I have a laptop to connect to the virtual machine via a separate Internet connection over 4G. The 4G router is connected to a UPS.

In the event of power failure or Internet failure, the laptop is self sufficient (it runs on batteries), and the 4G router will run for a few hours on UPS.

This does require paying for 2 Rithmic feeds, but I think the additional cost is worthwhile.

I also cross-reference the Rithmic feed with TradingView. This ensures I am aware of any delay in the Rithmic feed, as happened a few months back.

As well as having the laptop on for emergency use, I also refer to R-Trader on it to show open orders and positions so I can be sure my desktop platform has correctly sent orders to Rithmic and Rithmic has correctly accepted them. This means that if the primary system fails, my laptop is already powered on, connected, and R-Trader is ready for me to close any positions without running around in the dark trying to remember how to connect to the Virtual Machine under stress.

Data is backed up to Dropbox.

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@Ben_M & @autobahn

Thank you both for your contribution and input.

I’d like to add something that I’ve suggested to a few of our traders: Chrome Remote Desktop.

Although by no means do I recommend this as a primary solution for your trading, in the case of a backup it can come in quite handy. For various reasons, a trader may not have access to a mobile platform and therefore, are unable to monitor their positions when away from their desktop PC.

Chrome remote desktop can be used in situations when you need to quickly step away from your PC while still monitoring your platform or manage your positions. Again, I do not recommend this to be a full-time solution, but if you need to quickly step away from your PC this can come in handy!

Chrome Remote Desktop essentially streams your PC’s desktop from one machine to another, allowing you to control your PC from remote locations.

Whether you need to access your work computer from home, view a file from your home computer while traveling, or in our case: view your trading platform while stepping away from your desktop, Chrome Remote desktop is very helpful in situations like this!

All you need to do is download Chrome Remote Desktop onto your Desktop PC and sign in with your Google account. Download the app on your mobile phone and login with the same Google account. You will then be able to access and control your desktop directly from your phone! This should only be used in a pinch or in emergencies. The latency can potentially be poor as well, so please keep that in mind!

Optimus Futures Support

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That’s a great idea! Yeah, an extra cost but if it saves you one time could pay for itself.

Sounds like you are extra protected, nice! Thanks so much for sharing.

Jake this is great! I’m going to download now, thanks for chiming in.

Just trying to understand the 2 RIthmic connections.
You have one in a data center and one at home, but how do you connect to the data center when your internet is down? Via phone?

More backups are better and I do like your approach.

I have two independent Internet feeds.

The primary one is FTTC (Fibre to the Cabinet - high speed Internet delivered over a standard analogue phone line). This will be affected by power cuts.

The backup one is 4G - delivered wirelessly via a mobile phone operator. This is independent of power failures.

A budget option would be to simply put a mobile phone into wireless hot-spot mode and connect the laptop via that. But signal is not so good in my house (I live in a rural area) and using a mobile phone that is also used for other purposes isn’t a robust solution. So I have a dedicated 4G router which does the same job, except it has a much bigger antenna and I can locate it high in the house for better signal. The 4G router is connected to a battery backup so it will continue through a power failure.


Regarding the two Internet connections, I do not use a router that automatically fails over because that would become a single point of failure. Redundant routers do exist, but these are complex and expensive (think Cisco); essential if many users in an office want to work seamlessly, but overkill for one person working from home. Cheap ‘redundant’ routers (think D-Link/Netgear) exist, but in my experience as an IT specialist tend to cause more problems than they solve.

So the simplest option that requires no troubleshooting or brainpower during an outage is a PC connected to one Internet connection, and a laptop connected to the other. Two completely separate, self contained systems with no dependency on each other.


If you are in a rural area with this configuration, you are the silicon valley of your area. :clap:
Glad you thought of every configuration possible for backup.