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storing photos on external hard drives

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  • storing photos on external hard drives

    I have an external hard drive that's just sitting there I tried saving all my photos from my hard drive onto it to free hard drive space and wound up with just the folders and nothing inside. So my question is, how do I save entire folders of pictures onto my external hard drive - or - set up folders on my external hard drive first so I can select all and save into the folder? 2nd question: how can I automatically save onto my external hard drive? 3rd question: I've been using Flickr to store all my photos since I can't get the external hard drive to function safe is that in your opinion? This is a HUGE issue for me and I've been struggling with it for the past 2 years. Maybe someone out there has it figured out?

  • #2
    This all depends on what operating system you use (Windows? OS X?) and what programs you use to manage your files (to determine how you can automatically save them onto the external).

    As far as the general questions: saving photos onto an external drive is just fine. I like to keep a backup of my photos (just in case!), so I save on my internal disk, and back up onto an external. Saving photos on flickr works, but it *may* make it a bit harder to get them back if you lose your drive -- it'll be slow to download them all at once.
    David Clark Photography, project 365 photo blog, flickr.
    It is OK to edit and repost my photos on the DPS forums only.


    • #3
      Don't just save your pictures in once place. I have copies on my Mac, an external hard drive and my Flickr account. Less frequently, I copy to a second external hard drive, too.

      Also, you want it to be as easy as possible to backup - my main external drive is a "Maxtor One-Touch", which allows me to press a button on the drive and it runs a backup program. If you've got a machine that is on a lot of the time (like the servers I run at work) then scheduled backup is even better.

      Wulf Forrester-Barker << Sites: blog / flickr >>
      Gear: Nikon D40, Nikon AFS 18-55mm f/3.5 - 5.6G, Nikon Series E 50mm f/1.8, Nikon AF 70-300mm f/4-5.6G, Vivitar 90mm f/2.5 macro, Raynox DCR-250, Lensbaby 2.0k, SB600


      • #4
        So my system is twofold. I save them on an external and on CD's.

        Is this overkill? Well, unfortunately, I learned the hard way that hard drives sometimes crash. I backed up many of the important pictures on CD's before that happened... but not all of them. I'm honestly not sure if the pictures will be able to be retrieved. It depends on the condition of my hard drive.

        If they're photos you can stand to lose, I guess you don't have to back them up. But if they're important enough to save in one place, my guess is they're important enough to save in two just to be safe.

        Flickr, I honestly don't know if that's safe or wise. CD's seem like a safer option to me. Or a second hard drive. Or both. Back up your back up to your back up.
        Last edited by PhotoJunkieJen; 07-16-2009, 09:25 PM.
        Building my gear one piece at a time!
        - Rebel Xti
        - Tamron 28-75
        - Sigma 10-20
        - Speedlite 430 Exii


        • #5
          I have an internal drive I save all my RAW files to. I do the editing from there and then when I convert them to JPEG's those get saved to an external drive. Seems redundant but at least I will have one or the other.


          • #6
            An external drive operates the same as the internal drive on your computer. You make folders and add files the same way.
            Assuming you are using windows:
            When you want to copy files from your computer to the external hd you can just drag and drop. Have both windows open and drag from one to the other You can also use the copy to command and tell it where to send them.
            I don't know what you mean by automatically saving to external hd. How are you saving them to your hd now? It would be the same way but change the location to the hd.
            And yes I think flickr is a good way to back up but not as the only backup.
            I hope this helps a little. It worries me where my digital files will be 20 years from now too.
            My Gear


            • #7
              Never keep all your photos on one drive. Always have a second copy. ALL DRIVES FAIL! There is some free software that is easy to install and use which can automate your backups and make it easy.

              For XP Iuse EZBackItup.

              For Vista (or XP) Cobian.

              This software does not do images, it copies file for file and replicates the folder structure being backed up. Easier to retrieve data that way.
              Canon 40D, Canon 400D, Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II, Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5, Canon EF 24-70 f2.8L, Canon EF 70-200 f/2.8L IS, Canon EF 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L IS, Speedlites and studio gear.



              • #8
                I also use a dual solution:

                1. AllwaySync (Windows) for easy backup between main harddrive and external harddrive. This protects against a disk failure. Can be setup to autosync when the contents of the sync'd drive changes. Had to purchase a pro account given the number of files I'm sync'ing. Something like $20-30 one time. Might be free options out there as well.

                2. Offline backup for a real (as in house burns down) catastrophe. It takes a while to get through the initial upload of files, but is pretty automatic after that. Costs $5/mo for unlimited storage.
                And man the poets down here don't write nothin' at all.
                They just stand back and let it all be.