Backup and archiving solutions - What's your Workflow?

Cliff Etzel wrote on 6/3/2018, 5:25 PM

I'm curious to read what others are doing for their backup and archiving routine for their projects. I've been wrestling with older less than 1TB drives and this past week had me face a realization I needed to step up my game for backing up and archiving current as well as past projects.

Even though I'm pretty tech savvy - almost OCD about it (I worked for Symantec back in the 90's and I learned alot about computer tech while doing tech support), I wanted to set up a simple yet redundant solution for now and then build upon it as I produce more work. Since I'm both a photographer and video shooter, I needed something that didn't require alot of financial resources and space since my office/living area is pretty small.

My current setup is as follows (Desktop):

  • For Photography - I offload my RAW images via a USB 3 card reader to an eSata attached 2x750GB Raid 1 (I will be upgrading those disks to a 2x2TB or 2x4TB Raid 1 solution). Those files are then backed up currently to a 4TB WD My Book external drive attached via USB 3.0 by running Microsoft SyncToy utility and set up as a schedule to run each day.
  • For Video - I run an eSata 2x1TB Raid 0 at the present time (Again I will be changing that to an SSD solution in the near future). All assets and Project files are backed up using the same SyncToy utility each day.

I've ordered a WD diskless NAS enclosure that will eventually house either 2x6TB or 2x8TB WD Red Drives in a Raid 1 configuration via Gigabit Ethernet and attached to a dedicated UPS for power backup safety.

Once I outgrow my current setup, I'll be looking at Synology as a larger backcup/archiving solution.

What are others here on the forum using for both editing drive configurations and backing up/archiving their projects?


Rainer wrote on 6/3/2018, 7:45 PM

... just before this gets moved off topic...

1. Change your mindset. Everything passes and changes and there is no such thing as a perfect backup. Floods, wars, earthquakes, fungus, static spikes, friction, theft, to name just a few, will delete your work even if you carve everything in stone. It's nice to have it but just not that important, move on. Refer to Van Morrison's "These Are The Days".

2. Workflow is as important as material. You need to be able to find your work, if it still exists. Start by working on a strict project basis. That's strict. Project everything. File a regular hard copy of your project details. Should be easy for an OCD person.

3. The more drives you have, the more likely it is one will fail (so stay away from striped raid). It's less about drive technology than method.

4. Here's what I do. Three active drives, project, backup and archive. Keep the footage on the cards until it's on the project drive and backed up on the backup drive. Back up projects at least daily. When you deliver on a project, move it to the archive and delete the project. You now have two active copies, one on the backup, one on the archive. I think two copies at all times are enough, but that's maybe just me. As your active drives fill up, replace them, put the full drives into storage and hope you never have to look at them, but if you do, hope at least one copy of what you are looking for still exists. I keep the full drives in containers by year. (I have a stack of containers dating back to 2013, and a huge pile of disorganised DVDs from before then).


Cliff Etzel wrote on 6/3/2018, 8:20 PM

@Rainer - your old stuff archived is pretty much what I've done and mine is a disaster...

You're correct on workflow for sure. We as shooters/editors though are now DAM's and I was curious about others archive and backup strategies for working with Vegas projects.


Musicvid wrote on 6/3/2018, 8:29 PM

1. Save project early, save project often.

2. Save your source media.

3. Done. Future- proof. Cyrogenically.