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May 29

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Hard disk on the fritz

The hard disk that all my photos sit on is misbehaving.. hence Kuching part 3 will be out after I iron out the kinks. But this does highlight the importance of backing up your data. I didn't really backup my data.. my usual practice was to move the most important files over to the newest hard disk. This was until my newest hard disk failed without giving much notice. That was one painful lesson. I lost a whole bunch of files that had alot of sentimental value. These days, I backup to a totally separate hard disk that is only ever physically connected to my editing PC for the purpose of backing up. Quickly and in no particular order, here are my top 5 backup tips:
  1. Set a backup schedule: Backup often, most backup software allow for user specified backup intervals. Set an interval which is suitable for you. Ie: You transfer images from your camera to your PC once a week, therefore, backup once a week.
  2. If possible, use a physically separate hard disk: And keep it disconnected only until you need to use it, to prevent power spikes / surges from damaging it.
  3. Backup on different media: Consider backing up to DVDs, Blu-Rays, etc. Discs have no moving parts, so are less likely to fail. But they still do fail, ie: breakdown of the dyes, scratches and so on caused mainly by improper storage and over-optimistic lifetimes stated by manufacturers.
  4. Store your backups in a different location: In the event of a fire, natural disaster, theft, at least your backup is in a different location and less likely to be affected.
  5. Update your backups: No point having backups if they're on tape that can only be read by a specific tape reader that's obsolete.

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