Digital Photography

Friday, April 07, 2006

Backing up Images to CD or DVD

Scott Kelby suggestes in a book of his that I have that you burn a CD at the time you are downloading to the computer - you don't save to the hard drive - you then use the CD to access pictures you want to PS.

By pulling the pictures off the CD you know that it burned and that it works. Burn a 2nd CD of the worked over images. If you start doing that you won't have the harddrive filled up - and if you figure out how to organize your current images this way, then going back and burning your other images to CD or DVD will be easy.

Some will burn 2 CD's of each - and make sure they have 2 different brands of CD. ( So if they run into a bad run of CD's they still have images on a different brand of CD ) There are cheapy - to expensive CD's - some sold as archival and guarenteed.

After burning a CD it is a good idea to make sure it reads - by opening it in a computer - a different computer than it was burned on is a good idea.

What file type to save in: JPG - is pretty universal and will open in the most applications. - BUT - it is a compression file and does a bit of compressing every time you save. TIF - Doesn't compress - widely used. Other file types - may be propritary - will only open in the same software they were generated by. Raw files may have different file extensions - saving files in their raw format is desirable but keep the propritary thing in mind - especially as the years go by and technology changes.

Then there are the how to mark CD's questions - Sharpie just came out with a special CD marker - I number my CD's on the clear circle around the middle hole. I store mine in the slim cases (marked on the hinge with the same id as on the disc ) in a box that holds them standing up.

Some store the second copy at work, bank, with family in another location. With all these CD's how do you find a certain picture when you need it? I file by date - but some people file by event - Whatever works for you. Some people print contact sheets - but I found that combersome so now I usually have a pretty good sense of the date so I just pop in the CD and look through the thumbnails.

The best thing is to come up with a workflow that works for you - AND THEN DO IT. It's sad when a harddrive crashes - or a backup system fails and someone looses a year or two's worth of photos.

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