When it comes to protecting what’s precious to us, we try to do everything in our power. However, many of us fail to protect something as simple yet valuable as photographs stored on our devices. While this wasn’t as much of an issue at the time when photos used to be stored physically using negatives, it is a major risk now. It is easy to lose digital photos by accidentally deleting them or simply due to technical glitches. Either way, it is necessary to devise an effective and reliable backup strategy for your photos.
How can you backup your photos safely?
Simply storing all your photos on your smartphone or laptop isn’t adequate. In case you lose the device or it stops working, the chances of getting your photos back would be slim. Therefore, you need a comprehensive backup plan, with multiple solutions such that your photos would be safe even if one of the backups fail. Here are three simple steps to back up your photos:
Step 1: External hard drives
The recording devices are the most unsafe places to store photos. A simple mistake, and you may end up deleting photos without meaning to. One of the most reliable backup options among physical storage is external hard drives. You would again have several options under this category, such as SATA hard drives, SSDs and USB flash drives. Among these, USB flash drives are particularly popular as they are easy to carry, store and use.
These drives also offer large storage space despite their cheap prices. Using an external hard drive would save you space on your computer’s built-in hard drives.
Step 2: Backup in multiple locations
A single backup for your images would not be adequate. Try to store your photos and videos in multiple libraries. You may use two different hard drives to save copies of the photos. Thus, in case if one of the hard drives fails, you can still use the other ones to create a fresh backup to replace the lost one.
In case using two external drives seems like too much hassle and you have plenty of space on your PC, you use the PC as one of the hardware backup solutions.
Step 3: Cloud storage
One of the most sophisticated and effective ways to back up media files is to use cloud storage. This is particularly hassle-free as there are plenty of companies offering cloud storage solutions. While some are entirely free, others are either paid or free with paid options for additional storage space. One of the key benefits of cloud storage is that you can access it from anywhere through the internet.
Even if you lose your hard drives in an accident or simply need the photos while you are away from home, you can access the backup stored in the cloud. It is advisable to look for a reliable cloud storage solution for your photos so that they stay safe and secure.
Tips for efficient backup management
Copying all your photos to the backup storage solutions is inadequate. You would also have to manage the backups regularly so that they are actually useful when you need them. Here is how you can manage your backups efficiently:
- Keep them organized: Many individuals consider the job done simply by uploading all the photos in one place. However, this only mixes up all the files, making it difficult to find specific photos. It would also be quite painstaking to organize the photos into the respective albums when you restore the backups to your smartphone or laptop. So, why not just keep them organized while uploading them in the first place?
All you have to do is organize the photos into suitable folders and backup them that way. If a cloud solution does not allow you to upload entire folders, you may create folders in your cloud account and upload the photos to their respective folders.
- Update your backups: Quite often, individuals tend to back up the files and forget about updating them with our new photos. By the time they remember to do so, they have to organize too many photos and upload them. In many cases, they realize the mistake when they lose the photos on their devices and remember that they haven’t backed up the latest ones. It is recommendable to update your backup storage on a regular basis, preferably once a month.
- Keep only what’s necessary: When you back up all your photos in one place, you might possibly face issues due to limited storage space. Hence, invest some time in deleting duplicate photos or the picture that you don’t really need to keep. This would save space on your hard drives and help you reduce the expenses on your cloud account if it’s a paid one.
It is ideal to keep at least one off-site backup, just in case the cloud solutions provider shuts down their operations or if you lose access to your account. Effective backup management would keep your precious memories safe for as long as you wish to keep them.