A few weeks ago I began to have problems with my computer. It began with a large update from Windows 10 that wouldn’t completely install and partially corrupted the boot drive. The problem then got worse as when booting up the software saw a problem with the boot disk and would try and scan and repair it but failed to do so. Then eventually the PC failed to boot.
Stupidly I had not created system image or recovery disks but luckily for me I keep data backups and also use different hard disks for my data and system programmes, so I removed the boot disk and installed another and made sure the Lightroom catalogues and all links were working and that appeared to sort the problem out (save for the link to Flickr). Once I knew all was okay and the new system was working properly I created a system image disk and then reformatted the old corrupted (SSD) boot disk and used it to create a system repair disk. (Better late than never!)
So now my system has two internal hard disks (but neither is a fast SSD disk). One disk is configured into two volumes: a C drive which is the system and programme disk which is also partitioned with a D drive holding one set of backups of all my photos and documents. Then there is an F drive which is the second and main internal data drive that I use all the time and I also have an M drive connected via a Freecom docking station that holds an active back up drive. So when I create items or alter things I copy them to that drive just in case my main (F) drive fails. This means I have the F drive real time working; M drive daily backups of important stuff and a D drive older backup. This should be enough but I have not gone so far as to keep a backup offsite or use any Cloud backup services.
All this reconfiguration took a massive amount of time but given the time I spend using a PC its well worth it. Here is a photo of my system image and system recovery disks with the active backup disk in its dock in the background.
I.T. seems to be part of the particular challenge for digital photographers and artists – a system failure can result in a massive loss of work in a millisecond whereas only things like fire would have a similar level of damage to people working with physical media. Of course the upside is that we can make lots of copies of data that are exactly the same as the original. But even this isn’t so great as the same image can look very different when shown on two websites – I see this with imagery I post on both Flickr and WordPress all the time.
This all made me ask some rhetorical questions:
- How many copies/backups of work do you hold?
- Do you have system repair and recovery disks?
- How much is your data worth to you?