Backup strategy for the paranoid

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Aug 18, 2011
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It seems every few months someone asks about how to go about protecting their data i.e. images and edits. I normally don't have much to say about this other than to recommend Macrium for system (OS) backups and straight file copies for everything else. I usually don't delve into my own practices because I don't like putting what I do into words, but I did manage to produce this:

backup flow.jpg
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There may be zero interest in this by the good folks here, and that's fine. But if this chart isn't clear and someone wishes to ask a question, I will do my best to answer. Just don't expect a lot of words. ;)
 

Growltiger

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Presumably the diagram is missing what you do with the Macrium backups?
Or do those backup image files get created onto your primary data drives and get copied like the rest of your data?
 
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Yeah, I left the OS stuff out. The Macrium images are saved to data drives, one of which is external. I used to use a pair of externals (one offsite) but I've gotten lazier in my old age. The Macrium files are segregated from the rest of my data for no good reason other than that's how I've always done it.
 

Growltiger

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My two externals have all the data plus the last three Macrium backup images for each of the five computers.
Once a month an external is transported to another location where everything is replicated onto the main machine there.
In addition a second machine at each location and a laptop have all most important data replicated to them.
The externals are in a fireproof safe when not in use.
So I should be fairly safe.
The biggest remaining danger is file corruption which I am unaware of, which would spread through the system until every copy is corrupted. I could easily avoid that with lots more externals, being rotated out of service on a monthly and annual cycle, but that is going too far even for me and is too expensive.
 
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Richard, your post made me wonder just what happened to my redundant externals that I hadn't seen since we moved four years ago. As it turns out, they were in a box in the back of a closet—along with some camera stuff (missing ND filter and some bag dividers) so it was a good find. I may even start keeping a drive offsite again. All my neighbors owe me favors and they have plenty of closet space. :)
 
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