If your hard drive crashed tomorrow…
…are you absolutely confident you’d get all of your photos back? Not just some of them, or “most” of them…all of them! If you’re having to really think about that, or you just paused and winced a bit, then while we have this extra time on our hands, it’s a great time to make absolutely sure our photo library is 100% fully backed up.
So, if you were in the “I winced” group, let’s make this “Back up ALL my photos” weekend
I’ll give you the same advice I would give a good friend if they asked; if you want to make your backup life easy now, and going forward, get all your photos together on one single drive.
You can pick up a 4-Terabyte WD My Book external hard drive right now for around $80. That’s just insanely cheap. For most photographers, 4-Terabytes will probably cover you and then some. If you’re a working pro, or someone who shoots a ton, you can pick up a massive 10-Terabyte WD My Book for around $189. Seriously, that’s whacked!
OK, once you get your big empty drive, one at a time, plug in your other drives, drag all the photos from that little drive onto the big drive, and then eject it, and plug in the next one and do the same thing until all your photos are finally all together in one safe place. Having them all together like that (maybe for the first time ever), makes your life easier because now at least you know where they all are, and you can make a back-up of this drive, and now that your backup has all your photos on it (yes, I recommend having a 2nd backup — hey, ya never know. Drives go back — you can get an electrical surge that kills it; it can get stolen, damaged, and so on. By having a 2nd backup, you’re not putting all your eggs in one basket.
Now, it’s entirely possible that you already have a drive with enough open space to take all your images on all your other drives and consolidate them into one single drive, and if that’s the case, you know exactly how you’ll be spending a few hours this weekend (it’s a perfect Saturday morning project and it will take less time than you’d think). :)
While you’re at it, when was the last time you backed up your Lightroom catalog?
If you winced because it’s been a while, or you just said to yourself, “Are we supposed to back up our catalog?” here’s an article I wrote that will help.
By the way — getting really backed up like this has a wonderful side effect — you’ll get a great night’s sleep knowing that if your hard drive crashed tomorrow, all your photos would absolutely be backed up.
I wish you a Great Backup Weekend! :)
P.S. A big thank you to everybody who attended our first-ever, two-day online Lightroom Conference. It was just incredible, with over 1,000 photographers attending, and the end-of-conference survey results are just over-the-moon with how much people loved it. We are thrilled with how the whole thing came off, and thank you for your incredible support and enthusiasm for the conference. We are truly humbled at the response, and so grateful for the trust you placed us in to deliver a world-class learning event for you.