Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Backing up

No, this post is not contain valuable driving tips. Instead this post contains a lesson I learned about the value of backing up your precious videos and photos. I recently had a computer go to computer heaven and am thankful I had such an extensive back up system in place to make sure I had all my memories available after the crash!

So, here is how I make sure to keep things sorted and organized:

1.) When I download my pictures from my video camera or still camera, I place them on my external hard drive in a file within the my pictures folder. In that Folder entitled my pictures, I have a folder called Leiker family personal photos. In the personal photos folder I have each year listed 2001, 2002, 2003, etc. You might ask why I have so many folders within folders, I really am not sure why I do, except to say that I like folders and feel that "filing" them within each other makes it more organized and easier to find.

So, for example, today I placed my photos from our fire station fieldtrip into a folder called October 14, 2009 which is inside a folder called 2009 which is inside a folder labeled Leiker Family Personal photos which is in the my photos folder on my external hard drive. Please note, I never store my photos on my computer. I have found that the investment of an external hard drive is an excellent one because it can be transported and secured so easily when not in use.

2.) Once a month (usually at the end of each month) I take a few minutes to burn two copies of my video files for that month and two copies of my still photos for that month onto DVD. I give one copy to my parents for safe keeping and keep one copy in a CD storage binder in a closet on our main floor in our house.

3.) Every few weeks (o.k., actually it's usually just when I remember and sometimes that is only every few months) I take a few moments to upload my most recent photos to an online back up system. I have tried Sugar Sync, ShutterFly Share and Drop shots. I have settled on Drop Shots for now. The cost is around $5.00 a month for me to keep my photos and the load time seems to be the fastest.

4.) Every few months I also back up all my personal videos, photos and digital scrapbooking files to a second external hard drive and store it in a safe hidden place.

This is the system that I have created to keep my personal memories safe. I feel that by backing up my photos and storing them in various locations in various ways, I will be protected in the event of fire, flood, theft or computer crash.

My children's first steps, photos of loved ones who are no longer with us on this Earth and yes, even my bad hair styles from previous years are so very important and can't be replaced! So I feel it is worth the few extra minutes each month to keep things organized stored safely.

How do you back up your memories?


Tracy said...

I'm glad to hear people actually taking this precaution. So few people do and then have to learn the hard way. I'm impressed by your backup system, it's very well thought out. I use Mozy to backup our computer on-line, but have to admit, I haven't been very good about backing up to the external hard drive lately. Guess I know what I will be doing this weekend. :) Thanks for the reminder.

Tracy said...

I have to applaud your efforts for backing up your media. So few people actually do this and then end up learning how important it is the hard way. I'm impressed by your system, it's very well thought out. Especially having your mom and dad take a copy off site. That's almost unheard of. Great job! We use Mozy to backup our computer online and I've been very happy with it so far. It's $5 a month for unlimited storage. I also back up to an external hard drive, but I'm sad to say your much more tenacious than I am. So....I guess I know what I'll be doing this weekend. Thanks for the reminder. :)