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Photography Question 
Irene Troy
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/27/2004
 

How do you back up your work?


This is my situation, and I hope that some of you might have some advice to offer: I travel a great deal for my work as a writer. I also now do photography with many of my assignments. I carry an external backup drive; copy to archival gold CDs and keep the original on the laptop. Last week I was in a car accident (nothing serious, some idiot ran a red light and slammed into me broadside) and this started me thinking about how all this equipment is in one place, my car. What would happen if, (heaven forbid!) something happened to my car when all the gear was packed inside? What happens if someone broke into my hotel room and stole the gear? As you can see, I am thinking somewhat paranoid, but it really has made me think about how to ensure that my work is safe even when traveling. If you travel, for work or pleasure, how do you handle this issue? I am considering an online data storage service, but they seem awfully pricy and wonder if there is a better solution. BTW: the idea of sending home the CDs has also crossed my mind, but, again, I would have to trust the CDs to the whims of shipping. Let me know if I am being too paranoid, or if there is another answer to this issue. Thanks!

Irene


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1/20/2007 9:42:08 AM

 
Who Me? 
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/19/2007
  If you FTP your files like I do to pictage your pictures will sit on their super computer for two years. Then if you want them to sit their further you must pay $25 dollars for every 3 months


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1/20/2007 10:57:16 AM

 
Who Me? 
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/19/2007
  it takes about 1 hr per 100 photos, but you can FTP while your sleeping


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1/20/2007 11:00:45 AM

 
Irene Troy
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/27/2004
  Thanks, Derek; however, the site appears to be more of an upload service where clients may view images. What I am looking for is a data storage service that will permit me to upload images and documents to ensure that they are safe while I am still away from home. I do not need the ability to view those documents or to have clients view them. I am just worried that, as my work grows, something were to happen while I was still out on the road, the work I have done to date might be destroyed/stolen. I hope this clarifies my need. Thanks


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1/21/2007 6:08:20 AM

 
Carlton Ward
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/13/2005
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  Hi Irene,
I agree with Derek about FTPing the files as a safe way to ensure they aren't stolen. I have had my woes with a laptop hard drive failing which lost 200 pictures I hadn't backed up yet and a Lexar CF card that I had to use photo rescue to retrieve my photos but still lost 50 photos it was unable to retrieve. I have a small 80 gig backup storage device that is powered from the laptop and of course burning copies to CD/DVDs is also good. I have (3) 300 gig hard drives at home that everything gets backed up to twice because hard drives fail also. I heard they have an Ipod that will save photos but I need to research to see if it will save them without compressing them and can save raw files. I do like this Canon 30/80 gig storage device - http://www.dpreview.com/news/0609/06093002canonm30m80.asp
but I have yet to find a price or place that is selling these.
I'll keep looking for more of these portable storage devices.


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1/21/2007 7:25:14 AM

 
Carlton Ward
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/13/2005
Contact Carlton
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carltonwardphoto.com
  http://www.amazon.com/Epson-P-4000-Multimedia-Storage-3-8-Inch/dp/B000BPCWFA/sr=8-1/qid=1169393462/ref=pd_bbs_1/102-5374646-3864940?ie=UTF8&s=electronics

Epson P-4000 80GB Multimedia Storage Drive


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1/21/2007 7:33:50 AM

 
Irene Troy
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/27/2004
  Okay, perhaps I am being particularly dense today; however, I am really not clear what it is that you folks are suggesting and how it would work in my application. To clarify my situation let me explain how work goes for me much of the time by sharing an example: Last fall I was out on the road for a little over 7 weeks. During that time I worked on two different projects for two different clients. I carry a laptop computer; a Seagate 250 GB external hard drive and lots of archival quality DVDs. I traveled by car and naturally, all my gear was in the car with me. I am something of a maven for backup and generally have at least two copies of everything important one on the laptop and at least one other on the external HD and often a third on a DVD. In my home office I have 3 separate external HDs where I backup everything. One HD is kept at a friends house so that if the worst happens I always have a backup that is not in the same place. The problem is that when I am traveling for as long as many of my jobs take, I am carrying everything in one place and I have begun to worry that this is not wise. Ive looked at a couple of online data storage services, but many are prohibitively expensive up to $125/month. Im trying to figure out a safe solution that is safe, affordable, and reliable.

Are there services that accept both narrative and images and that do not cost the earth? Has anyone had experience with these type services and if so, what can I expect to pay? I hope that this is clearer although I think it must be me dense today! Thanks again.


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1/21/2007 11:01:13 AM

 
Carlton Ward
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/13/2005
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  You weren't being dense Irene, I was just going off in another direction. I looked up some things and though using FTP to transfer your files to your home PC, it does take a bit of setup on each end but may still be the best way. I looked at online storage places and found:
http://www.photosite.com/onlinephotostorage/privacy.htm
Seems that most places wont allow you access to the full size image once you upload them (online photo albums, etc..) and photosite does allow this but only stores jpegs. I am hoping others chime in as there must be other alternatives.


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1/21/2007 6:49:37 PM

 
Who Me? 
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/19/2007
  OK Irene, you want an easy cheap way out. After you do your shoot make multiple copies and mail one to yourself and one to a friend and keep a couple in the car.


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1/22/2007 3:13:02 AM

 
Irene Troy
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/27/2004
  Thank you, Carlton I went to the site that you suggested and it really is very close to what I want. I have done several google searches but did not see this particular site before now. The cost is certainly reasonable and it appears to be reliable. Now if I can find a site that will permit me to upload my writing to keep that safe I am primarily a writer and just started selling my images to accompany the writing Ill really be set. Thanks again!

Derek your idea has a great deal of merit, however, I do not print in the field, but I might just make a copy on the DVD and send that to a friend.

I am probably being overly cautious, but since this is all fairly new to me and I have really just started getting real assignments, I tend to worry more.


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1/22/2007 5:46:01 AM

 
Who Me? 
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/19/2007
  thats what I meant Irene ;]


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1/22/2007 7:50:30 AM

 
Carlton Ward
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/13/2005
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carltonwardphoto.com
  Here is another site that looks like it will store any kind of file.

http://storage.vmn.net/index.php


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1/22/2007 8:28:53 AM

 
Irene Troy
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/27/2004
  Well, I spent much of today sitting in my motel room waiting for the storm to clear out so that I could get outside and back to work. But, the good side is that I took time to do some more research into this issue of safe storage. Carlton, the sites that you told me about are great; however, once I figured out how much storage space I would need during a typical trip, I realized that the cost is really prohibitive. Just speaking of images, not narrative, I have about 15GB worth of images from this one trip and that only includes those already loaded onto the laptop! I shoot in RAW mode and, although I do some editing in the field, much of the final editing is done once I am home and have my big screen to view images. On a longer trip I would have even more stuff to backup and store. Some of the sites that I visited offer an almost unlimited amount of space at a cost. In order to be practical for me, I would probably need a plan that permitted me to store at least 50GB of combined images and writing and this would cost me some BIG bucks.

I keep thinking that someone must have a solution since I am hardly the only person that is dealing with this problem. What do real working pro photogs do? I dont consider myself a true working pro photographer yet, anyway. Maybe that is why I have so many images; I usually shoot things from just about every angle possible and in as many different ways as possible.

Perhaps both you and Derek are right the easiest solution may be to FTP both my image and writing files to my home computer. I just need to find someone who can tell me how to do this. BTW: if I were to ftp image files, do these files degrade in any way as a result of being sent?

Anyway, thanks for your help and for taking the time to do some research for me. If this snow and ice storm lifts I may just go out and do some shooting for my own pleasure!

Irene


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1/22/2007 2:39:00 PM

 
Carlton Ward
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/13/2005
Contact Carlton
Carlton's Gallery
carltonwardphoto.com
  I hear you Irene, I would think there are more people on this board who may have opinions/advise about this. In the meantime here is a few more bits of info for FTP.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File_Transfer_Protocol
http://www.ftpplanet.com/
on FTP planet go to New User guide.
I believe you may have to keep your home computer on to FTP to that computer. It will act as a server in this application. I am still reading this as we go myself.


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1/22/2007 6:07:28 PM

 
Who Me? 
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/19/2007
  Mailing would be the cheapest if you could get a break during the day. Just because you FTP it doesn't make it 100% full proof. The safest way is to back it up make 2 copys to mail to seperate locations, keep 1 on a firelite or epson, 1 on your hard drive and 1 in the glove box. If all 5 don't make it to the editing room I'd take that as a sign.


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1/22/2007 10:05:05 PM

 
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