By Jamila Maloo
When I bought my first computer, I went large: 160 MB hard drive and 8 MB RAM. That should be enough for anybody, I thought.
The other day, as my MacBook Pro approached its last remaining 100 GB of free drive space, I decided it was time to start spooling my projects onto external drives. The problem is not simply that I tend to shoot photos in raw format--and a lot of them, too--but that a certain Christmas present means I can easily eat up half a gig at a time doing things like this:
Back in about 2005 I visited Kew Gardens for the first time. My visit coincided with a display of Dale Chihuly's wondrous work, and I took over a hundred photographs. But after I transferred them to an external drive, and before I had chance to back it up, the drive crashed.
I still have the drive, if ever I earn enough to be able to afford to recover it. But I'd really, really like not to lose irreplaceable photographs in the future--shrinking internal drives notwithstanding.
So I have a question for you technically minded folks. I already back up the Mac to the Time Machine, but as I hinted above I'd like to avoid eating up laptop drive space with these files. Given that I could spend a couple of hundred quid on a solution, what's the best way to backup my new photos? I'm thinking that transferring data from the SD cards in my cameras directly to a terabyte drive, and immediately cloning that drive to a backup should suffice. Is that enough? Is keeping the disks spinning all the time advisable? Are there cost-effective RAID solutions? I'm really going to have to invest in a USB hub, aren't I? Please feel free to make suggestions--and I'll let you know how I get on.