How I Backup My Photos

clickfree (2)All digital photos should be backed up; otherwise they could be lost to a hard disk crash, virus, or other problems.

I transfer photos from the cameras memory card to my laptop to ensure the safety of my photos. I have already learned the hard way that photos on a memory card are not safe. See A Saga of Lost Memories.

I use a clickfree external hard drive to back up photos on my laptop computer. This drive has a nice feature in that it comes with software that will nag you after a week, or any other interval that you choose, if you haven’t backed up your photos. I also transfer my photos to a home PC to create a second backup copy. Finally, I create StoryBooks. If all else fails, I will still have a printed copy of my photos

This strategy has worked well for me. A few years ago when my hard disk crashed and was not recoverable, I lost no photos because I had a current backup.

If I decide specific photos are very important, like our wedding or baby’s first photos, I also create a CD. CDs are the best way to backup photos because they cannot be overwritten and are not vulnerable to mechanical failure, like a hard disk. See A Consumer Guide to Recordable CDs and DVDs for more information. CDs are also less convenient and I admit that I do not usually take this precaution.


About Mark Mizen

I have over twenty years professional experience in all aspects of photography and digital imaging. I am Chair of the ISO WG5 TG2 committee responsible for physical properties and durability of imaging material and am currently with HID Global working on systems for security printing for IDs, licenses, and credit cards. Previously, I was Director of Digital Development at Creative Memories from 2009 to 2012 and was responsible for the Creative Memories digital products and services. I also established and directed the Creative Memories Technology Center, which evaluated new products prior to product introduction, assisted with production difficulties, and provided technical information to support product sales.
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