December 19, 2013

Backup Update

Every photo of Nicki I have taken from my DSLR has been backed-up to the cloud. Almost 600 Gigs worth, now safe from fire, theft and earthquake.

About a month ago I began backing up using Crashplan, the benefit being cloud storage, the drawback is that I’m rate limited in my upload by my ISP. Or at least, so I thought.

I keep two copies of each of my photos these days, one stored in a relatively flat directory structure that mimics the one the camera generates with directory names like 100DS5100, 101DS5100, etc, and another that’s more hierarchical and easier for me to navigate with directory names likes ‘Holidays/Christmas 2013’. The latter makes it easier to find something, but the former ensures I won’t accidentally override my only copy of something when reorganizing my files. It has happened more often than I care to admit. This tuns my 600 Gigs worth of data to 1200 Gigs of raw storage.

Since Crashplan is supposed to be smart about storing only one copy of a file, even if you have multiple copies, it’s reasonable to assume they don’t upload the full file if they detect a duplicate. I wasn’t sure if the “uploaded bytes” was the number of bytes sent across the wire, or the size of the effective directory that was backed up. Thus I decided to hunt down my ISPs data usage meter to see how much I was using to be sure I used all that I was entitled to. I couldn’t find it, however. All links that purported to be for the usage meter lead to dead pages. Instead I found a press release that the cap had been lifted and that they were testing “alternatives”. My ISP didn’t specify what the new cap was, nor did they provide any means to monitor my usage myself. The press release said they would contact “excessive users” so I decided to take them at their word.

I let Crashplan loose, so to speak, and checked our email daily for unhappy letters from our ISP. Six hundred GBs later, and still no complaint (although our upload transfer has slowed down to a crawl.)

The next step is going to be to back up the rest of my photos (including my iPhone photos), followed by the rest of my files and Domingo’s files. At the current rate we could be fully backed up in the cloud by the end of January!

Posted in Family Life

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