Backing up images
I'm fairly certain most internet cafes around the world have CD burners; but how common are DVD burners?
I take a lot of high res raw images and the thought of trying to backup gigabytes of photos on CD's is a concern.
With the cost of USB flash drives being low these days; I suppose backing up to one of those and mailing it home is an option; but DVD's are much cheaper than USB flash drives....
What are the options and tips for backing up photos while on a long term trip?
If you insist on a physical backup, then it's either SD cards, thumbdrives, portable HDs, or discs. I guess it depends on if you want to carry the backup with you (might defeat the purpose) or mail it home. I don't know your situation, but I wouldn't delete your local copy until you can confirm that the mailed copy made it safely. The mail system in many countries is very, "individual results may vary".
I suppose my question is: do a lot of internet cafe's have DVD (not CD) burners these days; and/or do most long term travelers backup on flash drives or alternate camera memory cards?
Shawnosaurus - thanks for the advice about the mail system in other countries and holding on to a copy until receipt is confirmed
Solo Traveler. Spunky Woman. A World of Misadventure. I'm currently traveling through Malaysia, Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia and beyond! Follow my adventures on my blog Spunky Girl Monologues.
In the end, this is our general idea:
--I'll carry a netbook
--My boyfriend will be carrying a heavy-duty (i.e. solid-state drive (ssd)) hard drive
--BF also wants to bring his iPod
--Favorite pictures (and only the favorites) will be uploaded to Picasa or another online back-up medium
It would be ideal to have an "off site" full back up, instead of only a back up of the favorites. If it's not too much hassle, we'll probably also send home DVDs. Issues related to that: netbook doesn't have an optical drive (i.e. no way to burn DVDs), I don't trust the parcel post in most countries, and DVDs can still fail. Thus, if it works out that we can burn DVDs, AND they make it to the other side of the world, AND they actually work, then that's cool. If anything goes wrong, we'll have to live with the 2-3 copies of pictures we'll physically carry with us, plus the online back up of our favorites.
Hope that helps!
I also keep a portable hdd handy for a complete copy of all my data they are super cheap and growing in capacity all the time. If it gets wet its lost but I intend to stuff it in my pack and then inside a waterproof bag.
travel by the calendar - when is the best time to go to your dream destination
The flash drive is light and small enough to keep on my body at all times. If I was on a trip long enough to exceed the GB on the flash drive it would be time to get a new one and ship the old one home.
Think of all the internet cafes you've ever been in. You've probably seen everything from wooden boxes running DOS to brand new pimped out gaming machines. I can't verify this, but some net cafes will have DVD burners, others will have CD, others will have nothing. It's really a variable experience that depends on the country, cost of tech, and the owner. You'll probably find that a lot of machines are capable of burning DVDs, but are missing the software.
I think no one has really answered, because no one here goes this route.
Personally I don't bother burning dics because I don't find them a realiable storage medium. My 500GB drive would last me through a year's worth of photos. The only thing I'd consider adding to a longer trip are second and third smaller (250ish) drives to duplicate and mail home at intervals during the trip. My photos are too important for me to rely on internet cafes to do my backups. I also prefer to do my importing and backups in the comfort of my room rather than spending hours in internet cafes... which I can't stand.
Come along for the ride!
- burn 2 copies on DVD of photos (yes, there are burners)
- mail one set home
- when my parents say they've arrived, I ditch the one I'm carrying around
Worked pretty well, the only time I lost photos was because my camera's card slot malfunctioned. In Africa
I purchased a very small 500 Gig external hard drive for under $50 where I keep a mirror copy of my images, files, and videos (when I first made this thread, I didn't even think that I'd be recording videos).
I also attempted to mail home some dvd's a few times. Only half the discs arrived, so I'm glad I kept a copy on my laptop and external hard drive. I haven't tried to mail dvd's home after that.
With my laptop and external drive getting full, I started looking at online backup options. About 3 months ago I found 'Rackspace Hosting' http://www.rackspace.com/apps/backup_and_collaboration/online_file_storage/ as an online backup, they have unlimited capacity and only charge you for the space you use (rather than buying blocks of space). At the time of writing this, they charge $0.15/Gig per month.
So, when internet is available through the hostel/guesthouse or internet cafe, I upload through the night or while I'm there; and when the internet is not available, I still have at least two copies mirrored, and each device travels in separate bags (in case my backpack gets stolen, damaged or crushed)
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