Backing up our files.

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Chuck Pike, Jun 17, 2010.

  1. Chuck Pike

    Chuck Pike Mu-43 Veteran

    333
    Apr 3, 2010
    Charlotte, NC.
    A publisher emailed me a want list of photographs that they were looking for. I knew that I had two, and I found one right off the bat, but I spent a lot of time looking for that second shot. I knew then that I really needed to start a real filing system. I looked on line, and I came up with several ideas, but then I found what I was looking for on The Luminous Landscape web site. (I have no connection with this site, other than being a customer). They have a group of videos that you purchase and then download to your computer.

    What I found was a video by Michael Reichmann and Seth Resnick, called, "Where the #^%&* are my pictures." These down loads cover several hours of conversation between the two about how Seth keeps up with his large catalog of images. It is a real eye opener.

    They also cover backing up your files. How to do it, the importance of doing it, and how even then you can have all of your files lost. Seth had a power spike that fried part of his apple computer system. He had to call on Apple for help and they sent a tech over to his house. Seems that the power surge somehow changed his password. The tech was not able to break into the system and took the computer with him, going to the experts for help. They could not get in either. Seth had many back ups of back ups of back ups and they were all lost. Over 30,000 of money making images locked in the computer. What saved his catalog was having an archive that was not connected to the rest of the system. I only have a few over 2,000 images in my computer, but they are important to me. I am in the process of setting up a similar back up as described in the video.

    photosbypike
     
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  2. LisaO

    LisaO Mu-43 Top Veteran

    798
    Mar 18, 2010
    New York Metro Area
    Lisa
    The best backup is several, in different locations (home, office, friends or relatives home even another part of the country, cloud). Different media types, Multiple Hard Disks including rotated and offline, DVDs, Cloud storage. No such thing as too many backups as long as they are not redundant in style (they should be in content).
     
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  3. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    Chuck,
    I have a filing system that is very easy and intuitive. I can find any file or negative I ever made in a minute or so....

    example.... 06-10-123.dng
    It means June 2010 frame 123 a dng file.
    so, if you date this way then it's easy to find anything because everything you ever do/did is in a chronological order. every month you change to the current date like 07 means July, every year you change to the digits of the year...
    This way no 2 images ever have the same file name.
    If you import and sort by capture time, you then have your photographic life dated and organized.
    I've been doing it this way for over 40 years and if I need an image from say Feb 1973 it's... 02-73-negative #(26a) etc
     
  4. Ephemeral Moment

    Ephemeral Moment Mu-43 Regular

    102
    Jun 3, 2010
    Darlington
    Using a piece of software like Lightroom or Aperture is the way forward.

    The keywording function is essential for ease of retrieval and the backup function really helps. When I load my pictures into Aperture they are stored in the Aperture library and backed up to my external hard drive, then my Time Machine drive backs up everything on the fly, and I backup every days shoot to DVD as well.

    Weekly I back up to an external drive off site using the vaults system, and all my keepers are stored online where my host backsup on a weekly basis

    As much as you can without inconveniencing yourself, but you need at least three copies, one of them being seperate from the other two in my view
     
  5. Letrow

    Letrow Mu-43 Regular

    35
    Jun 16, 2010
    Netherlands
    I categorize my pics on subject and put them in different folders under Pictures. The folders reflect the subject and the pics are named accordingly.
    I backup the Pictures folder to an external HD first of all and on top of that, once every few weeks I back up everything to an external HD outside of my house.
    You never know otherwise, a fire could destroy all the backups:frown:
     
  6. mauve

    mauve Mu-43 Top Veteran

    892
    Mar 9, 2010
    Paris, France
    Agreed on the naming scheme, but better adopt the japanese convention in writing dates : year - month - day and then frame number (as yyyymmdd###).

    It's easier for computers to sort afterwards on long listings.

    Cheers,

    Mauve
     
  7. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    Mauve....
    after 40 something years of filing this way...ain't nothing easy to change but thanks for the suggestion....

    Kind Regards, Don
     
  8. mauve

    mauve Mu-43 Top Veteran

    892
    Mar 9, 2010
    Paris, France
    Ooops, I didn't wanted to imply you should change, but someone beginning a new filing system may consider reversing the order of the records between years and months compared to yours. Of course, the troubles to you would overcome the benefits.

    Cheers,

    Mauve
     
  9. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    Mauve,
    It's a colony thing, you wouldn't understand.
    I actually changed the way I dated the Image Quest because of the confusion created by the colony dating system.
    Lickilly enuff, with Light Room my system works fine for me.
    Thanks for the input.
    Shooter
     
  10. Chuck Pike

    Chuck Pike Mu-43 Veteran

    333
    Apr 3, 2010
    Charlotte, NC.
    The video I talk about has 11 zip files that I downloaded and all but one are about how Seth numbers his files and adds key words in Light Room, so that they are really easy to find. After watching the videos, it took me two weeks, working 6 days a week, 8 hours a day to renumber my files. It really worked. And as someone else has said, you can't have to many backups. You need to have at least one off site. I take a copy in my car that I update each week and take with me when I leave the house.

    Seth said at one time he had what he felt was the safest of all systems. There was a firm that had a cave out west, (I believe he said a salt mine) that could stand up to an atomic attack. He had a copy of his library in there. Then one day he received a email stating that he had been a good client, but the business model that they had was not working and he had about 48 hours to unload his 30,000 + files from them. He had to go to AT&T to get two special lines to his office in order to download the files. Take away, is that no file is ever safe. But then I have over 18,000 B&W negatives here at home that are not safe, and I never look at them. I thought that when I retired in 2005 that I would spend my retirement scanning. Then as I grew with digital, I forgot those negatives and spend a lot of time working my digital files.

    photosbypike
     
  11. Djarum

    Djarum Super Moderator

    Dec 15, 2009
    Huntsville, AL, USA
    Jason
    I've been backing up all my stuff up on a portable harddrive. I've also been getting stuff onto DVD's too.
     
  12. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    Chuck,
    It's good you found a working system.
    I feel your anguish about the negatives.
    We are in the same boat and it's not an easy trip to endure.
    I gave up on them and try not to think about that issue.
    Good luck.....
    Shooter
     
  13. Chuck Pike

    Chuck Pike Mu-43 Veteran

    333
    Apr 3, 2010
    Charlotte, NC.
    One last thought and then I will leave this thread alone. Be careful what you keep your files in. Michael Reichman told of a person who had returned from a shoot with what he called large negatives. This shoot was taken over many days, and he returned with his unprocessed neagative and dropped them in the the slot for film to be processed. He had placed these negatives in a trash bag. Well the cleaning people saw it and it all went into the dumpster and from there it to the dump. sad story.

    I sent an email to Thom Hogan on this same subject. He emailed me back and said that he left a roll on the seat of a rental car once and that everyone has a story of lost film. Vincent Versace, on his video, "Unleasing the Raw Power of Capture NX2, talks about his office being flooded and having 11 computers flooded.

    And my friend the IT person thinks I am paranoid about this.

    photosbypike
     
    • Like Like x 1
  14. LisaO

    LisaO Mu-43 Top Veteran

    798
    Mar 18, 2010
    New York Metro Area
    Lisa
    Another thing to do is to transfer to a new media every few years. CDs and DVDs can deteriorate, hard disks can go bad through disk and head errors and well as electronics failure. In 20 years it may be hard to access these old media types so every 2-4 years you should move your backup files to test their integrity and modernize media.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  15. F1L1P

    F1L1P Mu-43 Veteran

    388
    Jan 2, 2010
    Europe
    I use DVD-RAM media.
    DVD-RAM - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Although hard disk may be cheaper and more convenient, you never know when they can die. I had one of my HDD corrupted and died, but luckily I've managed to recover most of the data.
     
  16. Flagg

    Flagg Mu-43 Regular

    54
    Jun 22, 2011
    Apeldoorn, Netherlands
    be very careful with dvd media please take the advise seriously about renewing the media every 2-4 years, especially the optical discs, too much light or humidity and it's gone.

    At this moment i have everything on flickr and my laptop (Raws) but in the next few weeks i'll get myself a nas raid 5 to start with and if I can find it an "offsite" mirror ( family probably).

    fairly low cost but redundant enough for me.
     
  17. zettapixel

    zettapixel Mu-43 Veteran

    470
    Aug 12, 2010
    NY
    Exactly. I bet the best media right now would be 2 offline hard drives in 2 locations periodically synchronized.

    I prefer not to catalog using proprietary software, be it the bridge, lightroom or other. My main objection is that it ties me to this particular software, or at least the software vendor. Try to switch platforms, for example, and it will proof difficult. What I do is just copy the files and preview them using FastStone Image Viewer - a great free program, then use Photoshop for RAW conversion and editing. For archiving I use FreeFileSync. .
     
  18. Howi

    Howi Mu-43 Veteran

    208
    Feb 23, 2011
    Sheffield
    Howard
    That's why you should have a minimum of TWO hard drive backups (backups on TWO seperate hard drives)
    Sorry! would not trust CD or DVD as backup, you find out too late that the backup is screwed.
    Photography is not a profession for me, just for pleasure, but I have the following:-
    Operating system on drive 1
    RAW files on drive 2 (seperate hard drive NOT partitioned of drive 1)
    bachup of RAW files on external HDD (only connected for backup or recuvery)
    backup of the backup HDD to a NES drive (Raid 0 - 2 drives with same data).

    Should photography be my profession (or a means of making some money) multiple off site backups on HDD would also be used. Hdd's are so cheap it's a no brainer.
    REGULAR testing of ALL backups is also essential as would be refreshing of the data by re-writing.
     
  19. Just bought myself an extra external hard drive to use as a backup. I just went to use it for only the second time and...nothing. It spins up but is no longer recognised as a storage device. Fabulous.