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Lightroom Backup Question (help)

Discussion in 'Adobe Processing Products' started by DrewC, Sep 22, 2008.

  1. DrewC


    Jan 30, 2007
    Denver, CO
    Okay, so... i've recently started backing up things to an external hard drive (500gb). basically, i have a question.

    A while ago i "exported catalogue" to the drive... which saved all my images, catalogued by date, with .xmp files attached, all nice and neat...

    since then, i've added more images to my INTERNAL drive, and feel its time again to backup the ol' EXTERNAL.

    short of 'exporting catalogue' in the drive and deleting the first copy. what are my options. (can i 'update' catalogue) or something else?

    thanks in advance.
  2. Hmmmmmm... Sounds like a Kiwi Geoff question to me.
  3. DrewC


    Jan 30, 2007
    Denver, CO
    thats what i was thinkin!... ha, is what i'm asking an off-the-wall request tho? it seems like EVERYONE would have this question? is it obvious?! hmm...
  4. Julien


    Jul 28, 2006
    Paris, France
    I have had same dilemma since I've started using this software and the only solution I've founnd is to copy my whole photos folder. It's taking more and more time obviously but this way I'm sure that nothing is corrupt. I'd love to know that there's a faster way though ( without using some 3rd party software like Time Machine or the likes ).
  5. kiwi


    Jan 1, 2008
    Auckland, NZ
    GREAT question - annoying me to
  6. Backing up files is not really in LR's domain at this point.
    Here is what I do, it may not be the best but it works.
    I import files to LR and then back them up to another HD.
    Once a week I have LR set to back up the catalogs which are kept on my internal HD. The catalog back ups are set to back up to the external drive where the copies of the files are kept.
    There is no need to back up the previews if you don't wish to as they can be generated again from the catalog and the image files.
    So here is the result.
    1. Import flies to Drive B - external (I convert to DNG at this point and "autowrite to xmp" is on to keep info within the files)
    2. Files are backed up to Drive B - external
    3. Catalogs are backed up weekly from internal drive A to external C
    The result is that image files are in two places B+C
    Catalogs are in two places A+C

    Hope that helps.
  7. Here's what I do, which works well for me:

    * I have Lightroom setup to backup it's own database on a weekly basis.
    * The Lightroom database, and backups, and photos are all on 1 external hard drive.
    * I use a batch script that I have running which copies all files that are changed on the 1 external hard drive onto another for a second copy. I have this batch script run once a day via the Scheduled Tasks. This is a specific solution for Vista, but you could do something simliar on older windows versions or the Mac OS X.

    ROBOCOPY D:\Pictures\     E:\Pictures      /MIR 
  8. Thanks for your input Chris. I think you need to ensure that system level backups are made when LR is NOT open as there can be corruption issues. I have heard of this with OSX Time Machine especially.
  9. Johnny Yuma

    Johnny Yuma

    Jun 27, 2007
    SE MI
    You can back-up your files to an external as you Import into LR.
  10. ChrisA

    ChrisA Guest

    That's one of the reason's I went with Aperture over LR. Aperture has a very good backup system where only the changes are written out to the backup, so it's quick.

    With LR you are going to need to buy a few external disk drives and rotate them. The first step in doing a backup is going to be to erase the old backup and then you are "backup-less" if you only have one external drive. Buy three and keep at least one on the drives in rotation off-site. Gues when a drive is most likely to fail? During a backup. Backups are the thing the most stresses the drive so you don't want to be without a couple good backups for long. You will need a minimum of three of those 500GB external drives

    With Aperture the backup drives are called "vaults" and it's relatively quick to plug in a vault drive and have Aperture sync it. You can even continue to work, changing files and dong edits while the sync continues in the background. Syncing does not impact system responsiveness noticeably.
  11. DrewC


    Jan 30, 2007
    Denver, CO
    i like johnny yuma's option... if only i was ALWAYS importing with my external handy. i'll still try and figure out how to do that... (and i'm not switching to aperture, i like lightroom too much. i did give aperture a fighting chance.)
  12. The reality is you can't use Aperture on a PC so that limits it for a lot of operations.
    However you don't need lots of drives because of LR and you don't need to be "back upless"at all with LR. The point of having multiple drives is valid but size will be an individual choice dependent on needs.
    Chris, I have used Macs for nearly 20 years and love them but I try and keep to the point, this query is in the Adobe thread and so has nothing to do with Aperture.

    Sorry if I was a bit stroppy.............
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 22, 2008
  13. Drew, I recommend that as well if that works for you. I don't do that now as I convert to DNG and the back up is made of the original NEf files when done on import.
    I import/copy to new location as DNG. Copy the DNGs to a back up drive. Then delete the NEFs from the card.
  14. DrewC


    Jan 30, 2007
    Denver, CO
    kiwi, do you have reason to believe .nef will become obsolete? isnt that the only reason for DNG?

    i still havent figured out a seamless way to take care of my backup retro-actively (but the backup to external upon import is a nice option)

    keep in mind i only have a laptop now, and simply cant import to external every time. or even MOST of the time...

  15. Drew, as I use LR and don't want the messy (to me) xmp sidecar files I decided on DNGs. Personally I can't see me evry going back to wanting to reprocess any files. I may alter them but reconvert, I don't think so. I have no idea whether NEFs will be made redundant but doubt it.

    For your back up retroactively from your laptop, you could just export the catalog (as catalog) and include the negaive files. This will copy the catalog and all files to a new location.
  16. Yes good point... I always have LR shut down when the backup is running. Databases don't like being backed up while they are open or in use.
  17. Exactly, they go rather "pear shaped"!!:biggrin:
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