Odds and Ends

How do you store photos?

How do you store photos? I really would like to know.

Yesterday I had a little scare. I was editing some photos when the screen started to play up. Who knows why. But it did make me think “Is my computer crashing?” It didn’t seem to be, but that made me think “What would happen if I lost my photos? Where else can I save them?”

That lead me to spend too many hours chasing my tail up and down blind alleys. [I like that image ~it’s just what I felt like!]

Like everyone I have lots of photos; mine are mostly stored on my main Apple computer. If that crashes, they are gone. I need a back-up system. These are the blind alleys I tried.

  1. Burn them onto CD. Not the best long term option, given that the technology to support CDs will move on soon, but a good medium term one. I thought iPhotos had a neat little Burn CD button, but no. The best I could do was to export the photos into my documents, where there is a Burn CD button. It was going to be a slow process, but for some infuriating reason they wouldn’t burn. First blind alley.
  2. Use my external hard drive. It seems that my hard drive (Apple’s Time Machine function) seems to only store documents. I say seems because the function seems to be playing up, telling me that Time Machine needs setting up when I know that it doesn’t. I couldn’t check if the photos were being saved or not. Second blind alley.
  3. Okay, bite the bullet and set up iCloud. I haven’t done this before as I am an old fuddy-duddy ~ I don’t all my gadgets synchronised and I don’t want my photos sitting somewhere in the clouds. It doesn’t feel safe to me. As it turns out, iCloud doesn’t want my photos anyway! There are too many for the free storage and, as well as being a fuddy-duddy, I am a skinflint, and don’t want to pay for more storage. AND (hear that tone of outrage!) I couldn’t seem to select the photos I wanted to store. It was all of them or none of them as far as iCloud was concerned. Third blind alley.
  4. Alley with a glimmer of light is putting them into photo books. That will give me nice hard copies of a select few. I did investigate a few of companies, but by that time my brain was truly hurting and I was deeply regretting the time spent on all of this.

So now I am opening it up to the universe, and not that pesky Cloud thingy, to ask:

How do you store your photos? What cunning system do you have to overcome changes in technology and maintenance of privacy? 


By anne54

Botanic artist

14 replies on “How do you store photos?”

I have a 5 Tb external hard drive, and all my photos automatically back up from my MacBook Air when I plug it in to back up once a week. I should do it more often, but I always seem to want my lappie exactly when I’d planned to plug it in… I have a separate hard drive for my 8 year old and now rather clunky iMac, which has thousands of images on it. I transfer from one to the other using a flash drive, which is pleasantly low tech and hard to muck up. I didn’t want to export everything to the cloud, I hear too many stories of things going wrong and all peoples’ stuff becoming public. It’s a wonderful idea, but until it’s cast iron, I’m not going there. If it was me, I’d have a series of high-Gb flash drives with tags attached for date/content, and I’d keep them in a fireproof mini-safe. They take up almost no room. Otherwise, for the most precious stuff, you can actually get quite gorgeous flash drive jewellery, something you can bear to wear all the time, and which keeps your precious images, documents and files safely with you; here’s a link to something I’m currently eyeing up covetously…:

Liked by 2 people

Hi Anne,
I have a couple of portable hard drives I plug into my macbook when prompted to back up. We took an ipad for our overseas trip last year as we were backpacking and ran out of storage while travelling so I set up the icloud account then to increase capacity. I also have my photos loaded onto the free app Picasa for editing and collages, but I’m not sure if that is just stored on my present macbook or would still contain all my photos on another gadget, will have to check that. Best to have several types of storage just in case. You could also get some books printed of your favourites or print and stick in sketchbooks for reference.

Liked by 1 person

Don’t own a MAC so can’t help directly, but since losing my harddrive about this time last year, I have a combination of hard copies [safely stored in the -cough- wine cellar], some on an external harddrive and some on two heavy duty USB drives that are attached to a keychain and go with me wherever I go. The USB drives contain my most recent stuff and the idea is that if a bushfire does come through I’ll remember to at least take my keys with me.

Liked by 1 person

Good question! I used to use CDs but now have as well a collection of memory sticks plus I back up to Microsoft OneDrive. And not very scientifically avoid deleting anything from device for as long as I can, so they are convenient to hand.
When I have time I make photo books. I like Snapfish and they often have specials.

Liked by 1 person

Thank you so much to everyone! I knew you were the right folks to ask!
It seems like there are four ways:
1. An external hard drive. I actually have one, but I am not sure if it is backing up my photos. I will investigate this further. I also take it to my Mum’s when we go away.
2. USB sticks/Flashdrives. I have bought a couple and am currently adding some photos to them. Because I rarely label photos I am now naming and sorting as they go onto the USB stick. time-consuming, but worth it. 🙂 Another thing to like about these is that you can have different ones for different sorts of photos, e.g. one for my art work and another for family, friends etc.
3. Online storage. Alas mentioned Dropbox. I have other friends who use it, so I will talk to them to investigate further
4. Photo books. Another good idea for a selection of photos. I am going to make one for 2015 ~ my life in photos!
Fantastic help.


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