I have a problem. A storage problem. I’m down to 100GB on my drive that holds my main photo library. At one time, 100GB sounded like a lot, but not any more. Not when SD cards are 64GB and larger. I actually have a backlog of cards to load into my workflow, but I need to delete my rejected images first, before adding any more. Hence the major constipation.
Above is the atmtx central storage center. Two 4TB drives, two 3TB drives, one 2TB drive, and one 1TB drive. All but the 1TB are the nice aluminum Western Digital externals. The black plastic 1TB drive, which is hard to see on the right, is used for MacOS based Time Machine backups. The rest hold my photos, and I have multiple copies of my photo libraries.
I actually don’t have as much data as this setup would suggest. My primary 4TB drive holds all the pictures, which I automatically backup to a second 4TB drive, daily. I also have the primary 4TB backed up automatically to cloud storage. So I have at least three complete copies of all my photos, including off-site backup. I’ve bought matched pairs of drives for a while. First with two 3TB drives and now with two 4TB drives.
I’ve never seriously considered RAID. I believe a simple setup of separate external drives are cheaper and more reliable. I’ve seen too many RAID systems fail, even when they are not supposed to.
Of course, I can spend a lot of time and cull my work, reducing my library size. Except, that’s slow going and I find it cumbersome. I actually like post processing photos, which I consider part of the image creation process, but finding my selects and deleting all the near duplicates is an arduous task. It’s a lot easier to buy more drives and kick the culling can down the road; maybe to when I eventually retire.
Next up, two 8TB drives. That seems to be the sweet spot now. Every time I upgrade, the cost per drive is about the same — $140 to 160 dollars each — thanks to the continuously expanding hard drive capacity and the rapidly increasing price performance. Pretty incredible. I can date myself by saying, my first personal computer had only 140K floppy drives.
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