How to Build a Comprehensive Photo Storage and Backup System

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What is the probability that you photos and files are safe in your device?

Not for a long time, I bet you.

It’s barely a matter of time before you lose a hard drive with your valued images and other important files. But such loss can be avoided only if you’ll cultivate the habit of proper storage and backup system.

However, in this article is a well defined and easy to understand principle that will enlighten you on building a comprehensive photo storage and backup system.

Though it might not be your fault but due to unforeseen circumstances, you’re likely to loose your data including your photos. No matter how careful you try to be, it will surely happen one day.

Statistic has shown that among the mostly common causes of data loss, 40% is as a result of hardware failure.

If leaving my photos without backing them up will cost me losing them, I rather not take the picture in the first place. Because I can’t imagine losing my photos, it’s so heartbreaking.

This is why I have always tried to backup my files as soon as possible, instead of folding my  hands and watch it come to pass and so should you.

But how then can I build a comprehensive backup system? You might want to know.

Even though storage and backup system are commonly used terms in most offices, Building a comprehensive one that’s reliable isn’t as easy as it sounds.

I know what you might be thinking.

Of course there are lots of photo storage and backup services out there, but only a few of them are reliable.

For most photographers, photo storage and backup is a boring act, and so most don’t pay attention to it.

It’s not all about taking photos, but also keeping them safe. So no matter how boring building a photo storage and backup might be, it’s also very important you cultivate the habit of doing so.

It will surprise you to know that estimated average cost of each data loss can amount to $217. That’s a lots of money.

Once in awhile your hard disk goes out of space or requests for update. And most often after updating it, you discover that most of the files in the hard disk are gone. So if such file was not backed up, it’s likely that you’ve lost it for a lifetime.

And due to advanced technology and increase in photo pixel, most of these pictures are now larger than they used to be which always result to higher and fast consumption of storage space.

Likewise the more advanced you get, your need for bigger storage builds up. No doubt you’ll have more photos, videos, tutorials to store. Including your already existing files you’ve got for years.

The thought of insufficient space can kill your zeal to take new photos, videos, or make you to delete some datas in order to free some storage space.

But how long do you want to live with such restriction?

Build a comprehensive photo storage and enjoy unlimited photo shoot.

When ever hard drive is involved one thing is always for sure that it will eventually cease to work one day.

Before you can start with your backup system, it’s very vital that you ask yourself some questions that will help you out like:

1).   What is my storage space demand like?

When it comes to building a photo backup system, it’s always important to consider how much storage you need.

Having worked for two years or a year, you must have acquired a whole lots of photos in your photo library. Especially when you’re out there may be twice a week, shooting close to hundreds of photos.

Below is an image that shows three different reports on storage space usage as time passes by.

 

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It’s obvious that your storage space will be on a fast decline, especially after series of modification as the photo sizes gets larger, clocking to megabyte.

Another space consuming factor is video content which are often larger in size. So if you have lots of videos to make, you’ll definitely need a larger storage space.

2).   How much do I want to spend for it?

Don’t forget that each of these photos means a lot to you, therefore you need a reliable photo storage and backup for them.

The prices of each size of storage disks differs in size and quality. And you would agree with me that a quality storage disk will keep your files safe, without corrupting in a short time. Just like larger storage space will last longer.

According to a statistic report by International Data Corporation (IDC), it was revealed that most businesses experience 40-60% growth in data volume annually. So therefore, makes unlimited data storage more efficient than pay as you go plan.

 

 

However, it’s important to always look out for storage disk that will last long. Though

You must not buy the largest storage disk in the market, before you can enjoy a good storage system. The important thing is to ensure that it meets your need.

You should be prepared to spend not just only for the storage disk but also for the backup drives for offsite (outside your working studio) and onsite (within your working studio) storage. But what type of storage will serve you right?

Since hard drive survival declines as time goes, it’s important you don’t wait till you’re victimized and spend more to restore your photos.

3).   What type of storage should I purchase?

External drives are recommended for better services. The innovation of technology has made it more convenient and reliable to store data on external drives.

Unlike the old pattern of using DVDs and CDs. In this new era most make use of portable RAIDed storage.

However with the help of this kind of storage device, you can coordinate many physical disk drive components to form one logical unit. With this you get to enjoy the benefit of data redundancy, better performance or both.

RaIDed storage makes it easy for you to easily share data across the drives in one of numerous ways known as RAID level, ranging from RAID0 and above.

 

 

The RAID level determines the level of redundancy and performance. Higher the RAID level, the better the redundancy and performance.

4).   How organized are my works?

Where exactly are your images stored? It’s disappointing that most photographers scatter their work collection in different drives.

Organizing your work is an important aspect of data backup, because you can’t have a good backup system if you don’t know where your files are located. And it goes a long way to make your work easier.

Following a repeatable folder structure will help you achieve a better result. Take a look at a typical example of an organized work.

 

Organizing your files makes it easier for you to navigate, save and locate files. It’s advised you use reverse-date naming, coupled with some comfortable and easy to identify texts e.g., 101010_photo_1 as the file name.

This is obtainable manually using aperture, but there are still some available software that offers the same service such as Lightroom.

 

Organizing your folders and files will go a long way to help your data storage and backup for easy review at anytime.

5).   Is it safer to separate copies of your file?

Having copied your photos to an external hard drive, you’ve ended up achieving 70% success in backing up your photos. But even at that, your files are still prone to theft and dangerous damages.

A recent report has it that criminal damage and arson is one of the frequently experienced crime in England which means your file is also vulnerable to it.

So as to achieve a successful protocol, it’s important that you make copies of your files in different drives as soon as possible. Because relying on drives can be disappointing, if the drive gets damaged or corrupt you’re likely to lose your files.

In order to avoid any such loss, all you need to do is to separate your drive to different locations after making copies of it.

Having an offsite backup will go a long way to save your files from physical disaster. Take your data protection to another level by separating your data drives to different locations.

It’s  safe to separate copies of your file since you have the same data in them.

Now you’ve succeeded in creating more copies of the same file in different hard drives. Keeping them safe should be your priority.

Try as much as possible to separate them in different location, and that way it’s safer. You can keep one in your office then the other at home, or any other place as the case may be.

This way your data is more safe in case of any fire outbreak at home or office.

Though out of 100 chances there is only 5 chances that this might occur, but it’s safer knowing that there is still another copy elsewhere.

Periodic updating of the drive is required for your offsite backup to be effective.

6).   Is there need to also take good care of the original file?

The fact that you have your files backed up is not a good reason for you to keep the original copy carelessly.

Though the file is backed up, it can still be altered by you or a third party, But with the original properly kept and well taken care of, you can still make the correction.

For me I prefer using a separate drive in my hard drive after which I can copy the file to any photo storage and backup drive of my choice that can be edited if there’s need for any amendment.

And I think you should practice it too, because it has helped me a lot and lots of people out there.

Conclusion

It’s very important that you try as much as possible to protect your digital assets as a photographer. Whether you’re protecting your client’s file or your own timeless memories, you ought to have an open mind to encounter any drive damage at any time.

But putting in backup system increases the level of your file protection, this guarantees you for extra confidence and more peace of mind.

I hope by now you must have known the basis of a building  a good photo storage system.

And don’t forget that continuity is the soul of every successful business. Though starting it might not be that comfortable and easy going, but with steady practice am sure you’ll get better at it with better results to show for it.

However, having extra copies of your data in a properly organized and well stated order will keep your files safe for a long time.

Haley Reynolds is the founder of SaaS Brand. He consults with Fortune 500 SaaS Companies to increase their online visibility through SEO. Get in touch with him by clicking the "contact us" button in the menu.
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