Today we want to talk to you a little bit about how we back up our files. We’re going to be covering three main things: memory cards and external hard drives, our server Effie, and the cloud.
Memory Cards and Hard Drives
Alright, so let’s start off with memory cards and external hard drives. We’ve got a lot of them and that’s because we don’t remove anything from our memory cards or external hard drives until the project is done, delivered, and backed up on our server. Our process goes a little bit like this:
- After we shoot a project we will come back to the studio and download all the photos to an external hard drive.
- Then we will back that hard drive up to our server
- Then we’ll take our memory cards, label them, and store them for safekeeping until the project is done
That process is the same regardless of what we’re doing. Whether it be engagements, bridles, a wedding, or even commercial projects, all raw files and footage is kept on our SD cards until the project is delivered. We use external hard drives for a few different reasons, but one of the biggest reasons is that they’re easy to move around. At the studio anybody could be working on a project at any given time. So when it’s time to change hands it’s a whole lot easier than moving files back and forth. In our opinion, it’s a little bit safer as well! Another benefit of using external hard drives is if we decide we need to take our work with us and do some work on our laptop we can easily grab the drive we need and go. Lastly, it really allows us to save a little bit of money when it comes to purchasing computers because we opt for better processors and more ram as opposed to more internal storage.
Next up, let’s talk about Effie, which is the name we gave our server. We have a Synology NAS which stands for Network Attached Storage. Anybody on our network, that has the proper credentials, can log into our server. From there they can get the files that they need or upload the files that they’re done with. For example, whenever we shoot a wedding we download the files and upload them to Effie. Then, when we’re done, we re-upload those files that way all the final files are on our server, which is then backed up to the cloud. Effie has about 23 terabytes of storage. With that, we’re able to set up redundancies that way in case something happens to a drive and one of them fails, we can swap it out and be good to go. We generally leave things on Effie for about two years just so we have it if we need it. After that we archive it and leave it in the cloud only.
Last but not least, let’s talk about the cloud! We use Google workspace for our cloud backup. This is because our emails are set up through there. We use programs like Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Google Calendar and it’s a whole lot easier to keep everything wrapped up in that workspace ecosystem. Effie is also set up to automatically back up to our Google Drive account. Effie is constantly backing up every second of every day to make sure we have everything in the cloud. That way if something happens to our physical studio we will still have the files that we need.
Hopefully you were able to learn something from the way that we backup files. So when it comes time to handle your own files, you’ll have something to refer back on! If you have any questions or suggestions to our system definitely let us know!