Cover your Ass-ets!

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The other day I was in an afternoon meeting with a business partner and I received a call. I had photographed and delivered a dozen corporate portraits for a Boston client; and they urgently needed the images of one individual for a press release. My client had just realized that particular individual was missing from the online gallery. 

In the past, in order to meet my client's deadline I would have had to shorten my meeting, drive 45 minutes back to my studio, and deliver the images digitally.

However, with a new backup scheme I was able to take a short break from my meeting, troubleshoot the issue, and deliver the missing images within 20 minutes.

This was my back-up workflow for many years:

  1. I have enough CF and SD cards to get through a big day of photography and video. The camera uses the second card as a backup (320gb of CF cards and the same SD cards).
  2. When I return to the studio we download the cards using Lightroom. The current drive is a Drobo 5d3 and a backup is duplicated on Voyager. (when the raw drive in the Voyager is full (every few months), it is stored off premise and a new drive is dropped into it). I currently have two Drobos with about 25tb of data stored on them.
  3. I then edit the photography images, mark the favorites with 5-stars and upload these images as high resolution JPGS for the client to review and the RAW files for the archive.

Although this backup system has served me well, I realized I had a hole in it.

  1. I didn't have a cloud based backup for video files.
  2. My photography outtakes are not archived in the cloud.
  3. My sound files are not stored in the cloud
  4. If my Drobos die, to recreate backups from the dozens of off-premise drives would be an unrealistic and enormous task.

This recent client request was just that type.

Recently my older Drobo crashed and it looked to be a goner with about 20tb of info lost. This was my wakeup call for a safe and easy way to recover from a terrible drive failure.

So I decided to close that gap and opened a BackBlaze account about a month ago. I have about 25tb of data and I do enjoy a Gigabit up/down internet speed. I started this upload about 3-weeks before this recent incident.

When I received the client request and was about to cut short our meeting I thought I would check BackBlaze. Even though the initial upload was not completed, that assignment was available and I was able to download the RAW files, process them on my laptop and send them off using my smart phone as a hotspot.

Done. I then resumed my meeting.

This now adds a #4 on my backup scheme. A cloud based auto-backup that covers everything on my hard drives. When in a pinch, or I need to make a major recover, this saves much time and stress. I would not use any one of the items as your only backup scheme.

My key components of backups includ:

  1. Drobo drives
  2. Voyager drive
  3. Photoshelter
  4. BackBlaze

Being able to efficiently respond to this one valued client's request, made the entire investment worth it.