I've been busy making a lot of changes recently in how I work in an effort to be more efficient and more organized. I thought I'd post a few notes below for anyone interested. A few years back I bought a Netgear NAS. It's really horrible to work with. To illustrate this point, I decided yesterday to pull all of my files off of it and move to a different device. It took 18 hours. I was averaging 4mbps over a Gigabit Ethernet connection, which probably has a lot more to do with the processor they used to manage the RAID setup than anything else. I've decided instead to switch to a USB 3 hdd docking station with hot swap drive bays (often called toasters because of the way they look). http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0094C0DYI There are a few advantages to a system like this. First, you're not paying extra for an enclosure every time you need to buy a new drive, just grab an OEM commodity drive and hot swap as necessary. Also, you're not having to deal with additional cables every time you add a new drive, and finally, if I decide later to switch from USB 3 to Thunderbolt or USB 4 in the future, I'm not having to gut all of my old storage systems and find new enclosures. My plan in a nutshell is to keep it simple: Reuse my existing NAS HDDs. Keep my photos on the master HDD in Slot A. Keep my LR Catalogs on the local laptop, separated by subject (Travel, Portraits, Family) Make online backups of all new work at the end of the day. Use the A to B drive copy feature every 6 months to create an off-site backup in case of fire / theft. When a drive fills up, grab a new drive. They're hot swappable and with the catalog on the laptop drive, I should be able to swap between catalogs and drives with just a few clicks. Keep unused drives in a fire safe. It might not be the most elegant solution, but It's a $65 solution to a problem, and it makes doing drive copies for off-site backups a cinch. There's a 3 day free creativeLIVE class next week on Lightroom. I've been using LR since beta, but there's always something new to learn so I'll probably watch that. http://www.creativelive.com/courses/lightroom-essentials-lesa-snider I'm still debating my new catalog strategy for LR, as well as evaluating Capture One Pro, so I have a few ideas, but it's not set in stone yet. I'd love to hear what others are doing to manage their catalogs when using external drives. Do you keep your working files on the workstation and backups on external drives, or do you work directly from the external files? What are some of the challenges of working with multiple catalogs across multiple drives?