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Who Really Owns Your Data?

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You may have wondered if your hard drive will die. It's not a question of will your hard drive die, but when will it die. The saying continues that you don't really own the data on your computer until it's backed up off your computer.
The other day while I was shooting and editing a series of pieces for a local jeweler, my Photoshop computer died. And it wasn't just the hard drive, the power supply died and spiked the motherboard rendering my three internal hard drives worthless. After four years of everyday use, I guess it's time was over.
All was not lost though. I had to reshoot one of the pieces that I had lost all the images of. it could have been worse, happening after the jeweler left and then having her come back so I could reshoot everything again. I had no problem continuing shooting and editing the images because I have an additional computer with Photoshop that I use for scanning. as well as my laptop containing Photoshop. And yes, I've ordered a new computer.

Backup, Backup, Backup, Backup

Two months ago I had created a mirror image backup of the C Drive. And I regularly back up all artist images on DVD plus an external hard drive as a redundant back up of what is on my internal back up drives. In fact, the only thing I actually lost was the set of photographs I had taken of some mixed media work two days earlier. But even that is recoverable because I had mailed the artist a CD with ZAPP, JAS and the full size images. Out of curiosity, I used a memory card recovery program to restore over 300 images from two compact flash cards (mostly of my puppy) that I had taken recently.
I did learn a few things from the experience. From now on I'll do a mirror image backup once a month. I'll connect a temporary backup drive and copy each job as it's completed instead of waiting for enough data to burn a DVD. And I'll not clear the images from the memory cards until I need the room.

Programs and External Storage I use

Shadow Protect backup program
It recognizes IDE and SATA hard drives as well as external drives connected through USB or Firewire. It also lets you edit backups as well as letting you copy specific files from the backup.
PhotoRescue for recovery of images from memory cards
Western Digital My Book Mirror Edition 2 Terabyte
Dual-drive storage system with mirroring comes already formatted in RAID. It can be a little flaky at times but it's reliable and you can't beat the price selling for $229 at B&H.
Western Digital Passport
Various capacities up to 1 terabyte. I use the 500 gig version for under $100.
 

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