Saturday, 31 March 2018

Never Underestimate The Importance Of Backing Up

A couple of years ago I did a shoot for a new client that I really wanted to win over. The shoot went really well, I got all the shots I needed and I was looking forward to editing them. I got back home and copied the images from my SD card to a portable hard drive and began working on the images straight from the hard drive. I nearly finished editing the images when disaster struck. The worst kind of disaster imaginable as a photographer working with lots of different clients. My hard drive had failed! I panicked. This had never happened to me before so I was in unchartered territory. Stupidly, I had no backups. I’d even deleted the images from SD card so I couldn’t even get them from there without going through a recovery program which I’d never tried before so wasn’t entirely sure how well they worked. What was my next step? I contacted the manufacturer of the portable hard drive to see what I could do to save my skin. They pointed me in the direction of their recovery software so I thought I’ve got nothing to lose and gave it a try. The process took a long time while I nervously looked on thinking the worst. Then after what seemed like a lifetime SUCCESS! I’d managed to recover the data and was able to finish the editing, export the files and send them to the client. From that day on I knew that I needed to change the way I copied and backed up data. I had no system in place so it was inevitable at some point that I would unfortunately be caught out.

My backup system now comprises of copying all RAW images from a shoot as soon as possible to my superb Drobo 5N2 and two portable hard drives while also keeping the images on the SD card until the finished work has been submitted. This way I have total confidence that my work is safe with Drobo at the heart of my workflow. Moral of the story, always have back ups for your back ups. I now go by the rule that if a piece of data does not exist in three or more places then it may aswell not exist at all. This advice is not only aimed at professionals. Whilst my near-miss horror story was limited to time lost and upsetting a new client, imagine if you were to lose sentimental images of loved ones. Never underestimate the importance of backing up.

I'd like to thank Drobo for sending the 5N2 out to me. I'd also like to thank Seagate for supplying the drives and Bernd at 360 Service.

For more information on Drobo products please take a look at their website

Thanks for reading. Take a look at my other articles from this blog.

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