Information Technology Reference
Strategy for Other Large Files
Although video files tend to be the largest, and therefore the most
challenging to back up, large audio and photo files (and perhaps
others) have similar issues. Rather than lay out details for every sort
of data as managed by each of the many audio and photo processing
programs out there, allow me to offer some general guidance.
Set Your Cost and Storage Expectations Appropriately
Although you can reduce storage requirements for your backups
somewhat using applications that offer file compression and/or delta
encoding, you can't escape the fact that larger amounts of data require
larger amounts of backup media. That's going to cost some money,
and especially in the case of network backups, it's also going to take
significantly longer for each backup run. (For truly huge files, online
backups are pretty much out.)
Keep Copies of Your Original Files
The raw audio recordings, your photos in the form they came off your
camera's memory card, or other original files are especially important.
Everything else you do (editing, mixing, applying adding effects) could
be done again, however time-consuming it may be, but original audio
performances or photographs can never be recreated in exactly the
Of course, you don't have to (and shouldn't) keep these forever on your
hard disk , but at the same time, it doesn't make sense to overwhelm
your regular versioned backups. Instead, do this:
Exclude these files from the versioned backups you update daily (in
Time Machine or another archiving program).
If you have an optical drive, copy these files onto DVD (or perhaps
Blu-ray discs, depending on your budget) and store them in a safe
place—multiple copies are even better; delete the copies on your
hard disk when you're done actively working on them. Failing that,
invest in an extra hard drive or two just to hold these archived files.