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Always a bad idea to store all your photo's in just one location

Jorgen Udvang

Subscriber Member
This is one of the reasons why I will never use proprietary software to catalogue my photos. I have more than 500,000 photos sorted in folders by year, date/event/camera and separate folders for edited photos, and I don't understand why I would need another system. With some of the photos having searchable keywords in their EXIF, finding a photo is mostly easy. 3 copies; an original that I always carry with me on two portable 4TB disks and two backups in different locations that are being maintained using CCC.
 

pegelli

Well-known member
I agree Jorgen, very similar situation here, all photo's (and corrosponding xmp's, total ~1,5 TB) is in folders, one copy on my desktop, one copy on an external hard drive stored somewhere else and one copy to an automatic on-line back-up service (which keeps all files until 30 days after I have deleted them from my hard drive).

I only empty/format the SD cards in my cameras when the extrenally stored external hard drive is updated (manually, about once a month).

I've never lost a photo yet and only needed the backup to undo some mistakes by myself, but I religiously keep using this system for the day the hard disk in my desktop crashes.

Still I consider this buggy update a major Adobe screw up for which they should do more than just apologise, not everybody is technically savvy enough to understand the risk of using their apps as the only repository of their photo's, or don't even realise it is the only repository.
 

Robert Campbell

Active member
This is an example of don't put all your eggs in one basket at work.

I have a modest collection, by today's standards, of about 60k images. This includes digitised slides, prints, and negatives as well as digital images from phones and cameras.

The images are on a primary external HDD with copies on two secondary HDDs here. No one in the family is that interested in the mechanics of taking photos, but they do like to look at them on their phones or laptops.

At present, I'm uploading all the images as an "archive" to Flickr. Flickr only accepts jpgs, so I have to export from Lr to a file and upload that using Flickr uploader. Although described as "superfast broadband" the speed here in rural Nrn Irn is very slow; I'm lucky to get 1Mb/sec, and this uploading is very slow. I also have these exported jpgs as an archive on the HDDs.

And, I have a complete backup of all images on a further HDD in Switzerland.
 

Godfrey

Well-known member
This is one of the reasons why I will never use proprietary software to catalogue my photos. I have more than 500,000 photos sorted in folders by year, date/event/camera and separate folders for edited photos, and I don't understand why I would need another system. With some of the photos having searchable keywords in their EXIF, finding a photo is mostly easy. 3 copies; an original that I always carry with me on two portable 4TB disks and two backups in different locations that are being maintained using CCC.
I agree Jorgen, very similar situation here, all photo's (and corrosponding xmp's, total ~1,5 TB) is in folders, one copy on my desktop, one copy on an external hard drive stored somewhere else and one copy to an automatic on-line back-up service (which keeps all files until 30 days after I have deleted them from my hard drive).

I only empty/format the SD cards in my cameras when the extrenally stored external hard drive is updated (manually, about once a month).

I've never lost a photo yet and only needed the backup to undo some mistakes by myself, but I religiously keep using this system for the day the hard disk in my desktop crashes.

Still I consider this buggy update a major Adobe screw up for which they should do more than just apologise, not everybody is technically savvy enough to understand the risk of using their apps as the only repository of their photo's, or don't even realise it is the only repository.
There seems to be somewhat of a misunderstanding of LR and LR Mobile in your statements.

With LR on the desktop, your photos are never "in LR" ... They're in the file system, just as your current system has them. You can apply the exact same organizational mechanisms of the file system as you have articulated them, and do backups independently, and view individual files, etc etc, just as you do now while having LR maintain far more information and apply other organizational structure to them.

This is because LR is a database system that considers the sources files as accessible by reference ... Importing simply means telling LR where they are in the file system. The original image files are always just read, with the sole exception of when you modify the time/date stamp or with the files are container files (like DNG) which are designed to be added to and you explicitly tell LR to update the container contents.

What you would lose if LR dies is any edits that you DIDN'T write to the file system or the previews that LR maintains independent of the original image files for display purposes. This is why whenever I finish rendering photograph, I "export" (write to the file system external to the database) a fully rendered, full resolution version of the finished image as a 16-bit per component TIFF file. So if everything in LR dies, all my files are there exactly where I put them and all my FINISHED work is perfectly safe. Only the unfinished work is lost.

The issue on LR Mobile and the reason for the losses is that the file system on iOS/iPadOS is a sandboxed, "private-per-application" file system to promote the security of your private information. Someone made the awful mistake of mismanaging that sandboxed, LR file system through an update cycle. It's hard to imagine how such an error could get through even the dumbest, first order QA testing for iOS/iPadOS! It's such an intrinsic, basic part of application development for these devices one ought to write those tests first.

The notion that users should *always always always* back up the archive of original image files to more than one location/device/storage system somehow cannot be overstated in its importance, but the notion that Adobe would officially release an update that cocked this particular thing up is truly crazy.

I have been using LR since 2006 and for hundreds of thousands of files. And have been using a backup system created about that same time. In all this time, through dozens of LR updates, OS updates, hard drive failures, new cpu changes, etc, I have not yet lost a single original image file. The original image files are organized just as I want them in the file system and doubly backed up into two archive volumes. LR presents an image management system with a couple more layers of structure and organization that allows me to find, through name/date/EXIF/IPTC/project/client axes, any particular image I want out of those hundreds of thousands very very quickly. And I can get to those files from both within LR and directly from the file system without even starting LR.

G
 

pegelli

Well-known member
There seems to be somewhat of a misunderstanding of LR and LR Mobile in your statements.
Don't think there's any misunderstanding, I know the difference in filing practices between LR "classic" and LR "mobile". Having everything only in "mobile" is just a bad idea.
 
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Godfrey

Well-known member
Don't think there's any misunderstanding, I know the difference in filing practices between LR "classic" and LR "mobile". Just having everything only in "mobile" is just a bad idea.
I agree ... I don't use LR Mobile, but if I did I would always want my original image files to be stored on another, external storage device as well. iPadOS now makes this possible, with access to external file systems. Previous incarnations of iOS didn't allow external file system access, at least not very easily.

G
 

Jack

Sr. Administrator
Staff member
I use a main raid array for primary storage. My images are cataloged by year/shootname. This primary raid is auto backed-up every day to a second onsite "big" array. Finally, I keep an off-site big array copy stored in a fire-proof safe and update it after every large shoot upload. So basically I have a double redundant system with offsite security. I have had the primary raid array fail. It was set up as raid-0 back in the day of slower drives for speed, but when I rebuilt it I went to raid-5 with newer drives and it remains plenty fast even by today's standards. Point is, I was able to easily rebuild it off the onsite back-up. Ironically, not long after the raid-0 failed, the the onsite back-up array failed (same drives) and needed to be rebuilt. This of course was easily completed with the main array back up and running. Main point is both times my system worked as advertised and no images were lost. Both arrays are getting a little long in the tooth, so up next is a refresh to the same config with a primary SSD raid backed up to an SSD big on a USB-C chain.
 

dj may

Active member
I use RAID 1 for my primary because some computer science friends scared me away from RAID 5. Risk management weighs both probability of an event and the destruction caused by an event. Hence, the importance of multiple backups. One cannot have too many backups 😉
 

tcdeveau

Well-known member
I use RAID 1 for my primary because some computer science friends scared me away from RAID 5. Risk management weighs both probability of an event and the destruction caused by an event. Hence, the importance of multiple backups. One cannot have too many backups 😉
I'm no computer scientist but I wouldn't rely on RAID 1 either. I had a RAID controller fail on me one time that corrupted a RAID 1 array and caused all sorts of issues. Just my two cents.

I was living in a basement apt of a family friends house years ago in grad school - which caught fire one night. Ever since then I keep at least 3 physical copies of my drives in at least two distinct physical locations. I'm currently using RAID 5 for my working drive but my backup drives are not RAID arrays. I also spend extra money on enterprise class drives for my backup drives....not sure if this is worth it or not but enterprise drives are supposed to be hardier than consumer-class drives.
 

PeterA

Well-known member
Raid5 + 2X seperate copies on hard drives kept in separate locations - updated at end of each year following culling which is getting more aggressive all teh time. I have 2 cataloguing systems one for family happy snaps which are precious and the other is for stuff I want to print or have printed or displayed etc - this is a tiny collection of about 1000 or so images getting smaller all the time. the 'print/publish' stuff I will probably end up storing in the Cloud - the family stuff gets put on little USB drives and disseminated each year - which provides another source of diversified risk management.
 
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