Back Up Your Digital Photos to Save Your Memories

by on January 1st, 2011
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As an avid amateur photographer, I love taking photos by the hundreds. I always carry my camera with me, which also happens to have a built in video feature, so I am always prepared to capture a special moment.This can account for the fact that over the years since I have been using digital photography, I have accumulated thousands of precious photos, all conveniently stored on my computer. There are photos from birthdays, weddings,Christmas, Easter, Proms, graduations, ballet recitals, track meets, gymnastics, ice skating shows, ice skating competitions, first days of school, and the list goes on. Most people have the same types of events and special moments stored on their own computers. Imagine how tragic it would be if something happened to the hard drive on their computer, and all of these beautiful photos were lost? Therefore, the need to back up your digital images and video to prevent their loss.

When I first began using digital cameras, I was so overwhelmed by the fact that I could delete photos from my memory card and re-use it over & over, thinking I would just store them on my computer and then transfer them to photo CDs. Even though I had good intentions of doing just that, my computer crashed before I got around to doing so. Thankfully, this was early on in my digital photo journey, and I recognized the potential problem in what I was doing. Thankfully, I was able to take my crashed computer into a computer repair service and they were able to rescue most of my images from my hard drive, but at a rather large cost. Then I realized that if only I had simply kept the images on the SD card and replaced it when full, I would have saved myself a lot of panic and hassle.

In my opinion, the easiest way to back up your digital images and videos, is to simply keep the memory cards they were captured on. They take up very little space, and can store hundreds or even thousands of images and video, and are relatively inexpensive. Even with my excessive photo taking habit, I rarely spend over $20 in memory cards annually, while still taking thousands of shots per year. I now only delete an occasional blurry image or accidental shot, but leave all of the “keepers” right on the memory card. I transfer them as I take them onto the computer, yet keep them stored safely on the SD card. Make sure to label the dates of the images stored on the SD card and keep it with the card. For example, write on a piece of paper something like October 2010-March 2011, so you can easily find a certain image if you ever need to.

Another option is to schedule intervals to back up your digital images onto photo CDs. Don’t wait too long between back ups, as something unforeseen could occur to cause you to lose data.Maybe set a time each month or so to go in and copy files from your computer to CDs. Make sure to label the time frame that the photos/videos were taken on the CD for easy reference.

Yet another option is an online back up system, although these services cost money. A company such as Carbonite can cost from $59 a year, per covered computer, although this type of backup can basically back up any file on your hard drive. This type of service can be especially helpful if you have other valuable files you need to protect or retrieve.

External hard drives are also available and can provide extra storage for digital photos, videos, and other data. These are nice because they are portable and could be taken with you when you travel if you wanted to share your photos with friends or family.

Consider using one of these convenient and easy to use back up methods for your treasured memories. Backing up your photos can really save you a huge loss of the memories you value and hold dear.


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