Dealing with a full hard drive is just a matter of fact for a lot of computer users, even more so for people who take a lot of pictures. There are cameras everywhere, and as a result, this current generation is the most photographed generation. I have a certain level of experience in this area as I work in technical support for a living, and I am an amateur photography enthusiast. Failing to properly manage your photo storage will result in a full hard drive and leave you with a slow computer.
Nobody likes having a slow and sluggish computer. Managing the amount of pictures stored on your hard drive is just one way to avoid this. This article is going to address examples of poor photo storage, hardware that can help you manage storage, and software for creating backups. If your computer’s hard drive disk is full because of too many pictures, this blog post is for you.
The biggest problem by far, with photo storage, is duplicate photos. I’m not just talking about duplicated pictures, but pictures with a lot of similarity.
The image above shows several pictures in a row that are not duplicates, but are all similar. These photos all provide the same information. There isn’t anything that one picture shows us that the other ones do not. This will turn into a problem for people who have this type of behavior. I have seen many computers that are storing over twenty-thousand pictures (yes that is 20,000) because of practices like this. If your picture storage looks like this, you need to cut out the unnecessary photos. Pick one of them, and get rid of the rest. However, this may not be enough, you might need additional space if things are too out of control.
Managing digital photo storage does not need to be complicated. One of the best options available is to use an external hard disk drive, or an external solid state drive. External mass storage devices are becoming more affordable each year, and shouldn’t be expected to break the bank when purchasing one. It is often advisable to store your data on more than one device. If you are keeping all of your files on one external drive, it is not technically backed up. If you really are cautious about your data, store it on more than one external drive. I have four drives myself that store various bits of information.
Choosing the correct software to backup your data is just as important as having the hardware to store it. There are plenty of choices whether you use a Mac or a PC. Mac computers use an application called “Time Machine,” whereas a Windows computer uses “Windows Backup and Restore.” Some external drives (Seagate, Western Digital, etc.) come with software that will back up your data for you. However, such software will not be supported by Apple or Microsoft. You can find links at the end of the article for information regarding Time Machine and Windows Backup and Restore.
I realize that this article was a little more tech-centric than usual, but it’s still relevant to the world of photography that we live in. We need to put to use good practices with managing our photos. A lot of this can be maintained at import. Imagine sitting down at your computer and knowing that you have your pictures under control. Don’t forget to check the links at the end of the article if you need help with your backups, and please leave comments if you have questions or contributions.
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