So, my friend Shauna has had a 1TB drive on her after only 4 months of use. She has backed up about a year’s worth of photography, including RAW files, to this drive. Sadly, she moved the data there with the intent of using the new drive as a fresh drive to work from. She had not made any other backup of the data yet. Chances are very likely all this data is gone forever.
Several ways to deal with this are now available. But you need to be aware of how things work.
Services like www.backblaze.com are amazing and super cost effective! At only $5 a month they will back up ALL of your data. There is no limit to how much you can back up for that $5. However;
– Depending on how much data you have, your initial back up can take a LONG time. My first back up was just over 2 TB and it took over a month for the back to complete!
– It will ONLY store your LIVE data. So don’t delete things from your hard drive thinking they’ll be kept on BackBlaze. They won’t. The data will be removed from BackBlaze 30 days after you delete from your system. This also goes for external drives. Disconnect an external drive for more than 30 days, and your BackBlaze backup will not be there any longer.
For a more permanent archive option, get a NAS system set up. NAS stands for Network Accessible Storage (or Network Attached Storage).
It consists of a box like this one from Memory Express…http://www.memoryexpress.com/Products/MX54585
Inside this box you would put two to four hard drives at the capacities you can afford. You would then configure the system to run a version of RAID, which is just a method of operating multiple drives as one.
So for example, if you put in two 2TB drives, they would function as as single 2TB drive, with each drive exactly matching the other. In this way, if one of these drives dies, you replace it, the existing good drive duplicates itself to the new drive, and you keep on keeping on as if nothing happened.
A GREAT system for making sure you’re good would be as follows;
– Use BackBlaze. This gives you a live backup off site so a fire can’t destroy everything.
– Use a NAS box. This is a fast and reliable local configuration. Because it’s networkable, you can just stick it in a closet or under your desk and keep it out of your way.
– Every Month, back things up to more external hard drives that you can store in a safe or something for things you don’t need easy access to.
Will this all cost you money? Yep. Suck it up.