THIS is a great article from the CREATING KEEPSAKES MAGAZINE blog that talks about how one scrapbooker backs up her photos. In a nutshell:

– Hard drive
– External drive
– CDs
– Scan old/new photos to online backup source

My method is slightly different:

– Hard drive
– External drive
– SD cards

Since I switched to a digital camera many years ago, I’ve always kept the photos on the original SD card they were taken on. While the card is still being used in the camera, I periodically go through and delete unwanted photos. So when the card is full, it’s full of good stuff, the keepers. I eject the card, write the beginning and ending dates in permanent marker on the card, and store it in a firesafe box with our important papers.

The advantages of the SD cards as a storage method are that they are cheap, easy to find images on later, and super small and easy to store. I’m no techie but I also assume that, since they are a later technology than CDs, that I will have the ability to “read” them longer than I would using CDs. One question I have but have never researched is the longevity – anyone know? I think the archival CDS have a super-long retention time so maybe that would convince me to also CD backup if I find out the SD cards won’t retain my images for years to come.

Another thing I do different than the article is that I use iPhoto so there’s no need to do any fancy folder system when I download photos onto my hard drive. It does all that work for me ~ what a timesaver!

What is your method for backing up your photos?

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  1. avatar

    I have them backed up on an external hard drive and then the ones that were considered worthy of being printed are on Shutterfly. I don’t have a third backup method which seems to be very popular. Maybe I should be looking into another backup method.

  2. avatar

    Hard Drive, Backup portable drive and also back up to Flickr with upgrade membership.

  3. avatar
    Joan says:

    I was in the process of copying images from the camera media card to my computer when nothing happened. Hung up. Waited and waited and finally withdrew the card. When inserted again, it reported a failure to read. I hoped to salvage the pictures by returning the card to my camera. No luck. Tried re-formating the card; unable to do it. It ended up in the garbage, and the pictures were lost. I suppose I was guilty of damaging the card by removing it as it was being read (even though nothing seemed to be happening). Just a word of caution. Whatever it is, it’s susceptible to damage/loss.

    1. avatar
      Scrapbook Obsession says:

      I’m so sorry that happened, Joan! Losing photos is the worst :( It didn’t even let you get the photos to another backup method so you can’t win, huh? And I do worry about losing my SD cards because they are so small. That’s why I try to put them straight into the fireproof file when they’re full and have been copied to my Mac and the EHD. Man, if there’s a fire or something, I’m grabbing my laptop and that safe, LOL!

  4. avatar

    you buy a new SD card everytime? That’s pretty expensive.
    I use the same card over and over. I import the photos to my computer. Organize them.
    Then I back them up onto an external hard drive and to our home server and onto a CD for easy access.
    I used to use Carbonite as a fourth method but let the subscription lapse.

    1. avatar
      Scrapbook Obsession says:

      I do buy a new SD card every time. I have a place online I can get a 32GB card for under $20 with shipping. That holds thousands of photos (my camera is only 10MP). I think it would be cheaper than CDs. For me, even if it costs more, the space it saves on storage and time it saves burning CDs is worth it to me. {I”m super busy so I’m one of those “my time is worth money” gals, LOL!}

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