Of Photo Archives And Backups

February 27, 2013  •  Leave a Comment

OR Photo Archives and Backups, Near Disaster and Recovery Due to Redundancy.

I had a major scare recently which concerned years of photos gone with the click of a mouse button.

Having acquired a larger external drive, my plan was to fill the smaller external drives and store them in a nice quiet place. At least that was the goal. The particular backup program I use was set to delete what was not in the target drive. Everything worked like a charm until I set the drive letters wrong.

Then with the click of a mouse button everything before 2011 was deleted and everything 2011 and after, was copied over to the smaller hard drives. As a result, my backup plan on the hard drives came to a screeching halt when to my horror – I discovered my error.

Because I have used the hard drives for recent backups, I became tardy (OK, lazy) in backing up to optical media. The year in extreme jeopardy was 2010.

In my near state of panic, and to my relief, the years up to 2010 were all saved on optical media. The now tedious task of coping them back to hard drives now enter. The plan is the larger hard drive can stay on the desk and the smaller in storage in a nice quiet dark cool place. The other tedious task is to burn the years 2011 to present on optical media. This aspect is most pressing.

Naturally, I have changed procedurally, particularly the settings on the backup software. Once I am done with the current photos (e,g, editing, getting rid of out of focus shots, etc.) I copy the current year only, to the external  hard drive but the software does not delete them – only copies them. Then as soon as possible, they are copied to optical media.

In summary: Double check software settings, backup redundancy is key, backup to good quality optical media and hard drives. The redundancy plan worked.

Next post: The madness of my method!