Wake up call.  Again.

Last year, I had a massive hard drive failure and knew I needed to implement a good backup system.  Last week, a huge reminder of the importance of backing up happened again…this time at the expense of our dear friends, Josh and Amanda.  Thursday morning, they woke up to…well…a whole lot less than they had the night before.  Their house had been robbed while they were sleeping.  I feel completely mortified and violated and it wasn’t even my house or my items.  27″ iMac, iPad, jewelry, printer, wacom, memory cards…GONE.  As if the mess of dealing with it and heartbreak isn’t enough, now Josh (also a photographer) has to hope and pray his automatic backup system to his external hard drives worked properly so that he has all of his files and documents.

Friends, please don’t think you are immune.  If it isn’t a hard drive failure, it could be something completely out of your control…a robbery…or perhaps a fire or other natural disaster.  I just can’t imagine how devastating it would be to not only lose all of my family videos and images, but all of the client images and files I have spend the last five years creating!

BACKUP…and then backup again.

How do I do it?  When I import my images into Lightroom from my CF card, I automatically send a raw backup to one external hard drive, and another jpg backup to another hard drive.  So, my images are saved as raw files on my Mac and one hard drive, as well as jpg files on another hard drive.  I then use an online backup service, Backblaze, to continually back up all of my jpg files from the external hard drive, as well as all of my documents from my Mac.  I like the convenience of an online backup, but I know that some people use DVD’s or external hard drives as a final backup and then store them in a fire proof safe.

If any of you have any other good ideas for backup, I would love to know!!!



  1. Janet says:

    Well, I know what I will be doing. How sad for your friends. Thanks for the reminder!

  2. lauren says:

    My system is very similar. I load everything onto my computer. Run a backup that shadows everything to an external harddrive (just one though) then I use carbonite to additionally back it all up to the cloud. Once I’m done with a session, I delete unused RAW files, burn to DVD, move to a “burned and backed up” folder within my photography folder and then usually don’t think about it again.

  3. Josh S. says:

    Thanks Jean. You’re awesome.

  4. Jake says:

    If they have the back to my mac activated on their computer that was stolen there is a chance they can find it when the person goes online.

  5. Allison says:

    Holy Cow…that stinks!!!

  6. kelli taylor says:

    Good and important reminder for Photographers and parents who would be devastated if they lost all their children’s photos!

  7. Joe says:

    If they had a MobileMe account, they could use “Find my Ipad” to see the GPS location of where it is. Here’s a link:

  8. Joe says:

    Yes. The only thing is that they would have needed to enable the “Find my Ipad” feature in the iPad settings. Hopefully they did!

  9. cynthia says:

    Just the solution I need for external hard drives. I use SugarSync, but it doesn’t do external hard drives and it’s more expensive.

    Thanks for the referral!!!

  10. Aubri G says:

    So incredibly sad. My heart goes out to your friends. I cannot even imagine how violated they must feel :-(.

  11. Tina Lynn says:

    wow…how scary and creepy to have it happen while you’re sleeping! I b/u to an external HD and also put a CD/DVD in each clients file. I’ll have to check out backblaze off location option.

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