SD Card Security

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Psamathe
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SD Card Security

Postby Psamathe » 31 Aug 2019, 3:48pm

Just been sorting out SD cards and I wondered about if what I do is a waste of time/money.

I've made quite a few travels over the last year or 2 and I've adopted the following practice with my photos (ignoring safety backups whilst actually travelling).

1. On return, upload all Raw&Jpg pairs from SD cards to computer (which is regularly backed-up across many external backup disks and Adobe Cloud).

2. Keep SD card with the photos on (label and hide in a cupboard).

SD cards are not too expensive and given the personal value of the photos I've been keeping them rather than re-formatting and re-using them. But is this a waste of time and money? How secure are photos on SD cards and how prone are they to "glitches" that make the card unreadable (or partially unreadable)? Should I regard the computer/hard disk backups as adequate and treat the SD cards as short term only (between camera and computer)?

This summer I has one "hiccup" on an SD card and lost a few images but I can't be sure I re-formatted it in the camera (I have found that formatting on the computer does not always work reliably in the camera so I always start with a camera re-format).

Thanks
Ian

Freddie
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby Freddie » 31 Aug 2019, 3:59pm

Psamathe wrote:Should I regard the computer/hard disk backups as adequate and treat the SD cards as short term only (between camera and computer)?

Edit: For some reason I missed seeing you mention cloud storage already. Perhaps best long term storage would be this over multiple accounts (Adobe, Amazon, Google and so on).

SD cards are, to put it bluntly, crap as long term storage. Not least because there are so many fakes on the market.

If I was you I'd get a cloud account (or multiple thereof) with one of the big names online and put your photos on there as well as on your local hard drive. A hard drive might go down, an SD will eventually corrupt, but an online RAID server with multiple redundancies is not going to be something to worry about (Use a big name though, so they don't up and go out of business).

If you want to store them locally, probably much better would be a rewriteable Blu-Ray. I imagine the better discs are guaranteed for 10 years or so, but probably just much easier to sync with a cloud account.

Freddie
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby Freddie » 31 Aug 2019, 4:06pm

BTW If I was you I'd want some way to access the internet and upload to the cloud whilst on the move (smart phone for example), rather than hoping an SD will last and last. Perhaps the easiest route, if you aren't ultra picky about quality (DSLR and so on), is to buy a phone with an excellent camera and sync that to the cloud/clouds?

kwackers
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby kwackers » 31 Aug 2019, 4:13pm

If you've copied the SD card to a computer and to the cloud why bother keeping the SD card?

I tend to use 128Gb cards with my current camera and back up to a portable drive whilst on holiday (just in case the card dies or the camera throws a wobbly / gets nicked).
Good, fast 128Gb cards aren't something I'd simply label and put away, far too expensive...

I've had SD cards die but not because of the card but rather the peripheral equipment they've been plugged into.
In one case a dodgy PSU that powered the card reader (prior to USB powered readers) randomly killed cards over a period of months before I figured out what was going on.

If I was you I'd stop at point 1.
That's what I do (although my cloud is Dropbox which automatically puts a copy on all my machines anyway).

Psamathe
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby Psamathe » 31 Aug 2019, 4:25pm

Freddie wrote:BTW If I was you I'd want some way to access the internet and upload to the cloud whilst on the move (smart phone for example), rather than hoping an SD will last and last. Perhaps the easiest route, if you aren't ultra picky about quality (DSLR and so on), is to buy a phone with an excellent camera and sync that to the cloud/clouds?

What I did. It was a bit of a nuisance at times with rubbish internet but often left overnight copying that days (plus backlog) raws to OneDrive (which I also happen to have a 1TB subscription to).

Also, as I use Adobe Lightroom I happen to have a 1 TB plan and that automatically uploads the raws (not the jpgs from raw&jpeg pairs). So on the move they are backed-up to 2 different "mainstream" name cloud services.

Smartphone or rather data contract is a non-starter as over winter trip created over 100GB on photo data and outside the UK Wi-Fi is the only viable solution but normally shared Wi-Fi is pretty rubbish. But I managed and most of the time had a max few days backlog.

Ian

Psamathe
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby Psamathe » 31 Aug 2019, 4:35pm

kwackers wrote:If you've copied the SD card to a computer and to the cloud why bother keeping the SD card?

I tend to use 128Gb cards with my current camera and back up to a portable drive whilst on holiday (just in case the card dies or the camera throws a wobbly / gets nicked).
Good, fast 128Gb cards aren't something I'd simply label and put away, far too expensive...

I've had SD cards die but not because of the card but rather the peripheral equipment they've been plugged into.
In one case a dodgy PSU that powered the card reader (prior to USB powered readers) randomly killed cards over a period of months before I figured out what was going on.

If I was you I'd stop at point 1.
That's what I do (although my cloud is Dropbox which automatically puts a copy on all my machines anyway).

I tend to use 64GB cards and the last one I purchased was a Sandisk one, 170MB/s (read) class 10, U3, V30 and only £23.

Away from home I copy SD card to iPad which then sends them on to a couple of reputable cloud services and I can do a crude processing (Abobe Lightroom Mobile - OK but not great on iPad screen) and post to my website. iPad also then keeps a copy in its storage (though that was not enough for last autumn/winter trip).

Part of reason I've been keeping them is just paranoia over pressing the "format" button to all those irreplaceable photos (despite knowing they are on a computer SSD drive, about 5 external disk drives and 2 cloud services. I suppose I regard them a bit like the original film negatives - which of course they are not.

Maybe time to be brave and press "Yes" to the format confirm question.

Ian
Last edited by Psamathe on 31 Aug 2019, 4:39pm, edited 1 time in total.

Freddie
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby Freddie » 31 Aug 2019, 4:36pm

Are you a proper photographer then? Is there no way to convert the raws to jpeg of sufficient (archive) quality and just upload them. Wouldn't that save a good 50-60% of drive space and make upload in the backwoods a fair bit quicker.

Obviously not as good as having the raws, but then better than losing the lot.....or carry a portable 2TB HDD that you can plug directly into the phone (surely these exist by now?).

Psamathe
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby Psamathe » 31 Aug 2019, 4:52pm

Freddie wrote:Are you a proper photographer then? Is there no way to convert the raws to jpeg of sufficient (archive) quality and just upload them. Wouldn't that save a good 50-60% of drive space and make upload in the backwoods a fair bit quicker.

Obviously not as good as having the raws, but then better than losing the lot.....or carry a portable 2TB HDD that you can plug directly into the phone (surely these exist by now?).

I shoot raw & jpeg pairs mainly because Lightroom only recently started supporting raws from my camera and iOS is a bit weird with Sony Raws (which don't include an embedded preview image). I tend to only use the raws (you can do more with them on processing) so I could discard the jpegs but they don't take a lot of space.

I've always (maybe incorrectly) regarded the main risk to the photos whilst travelling is getting mugged/theft and losing camera & iPad or both going for a swim/water. I've assumed a corruption glitch is unlikely to hit both SD card and iPad. Hence my being keen to get the images up to cloud storage.

Got quite a few portable 4 TB HDD (PC World mis-delivered and eventually decided they didn't want their mistakes back). But never tried it in the camera as I regarded stuff I'm carrying around as being the weak link re security. Shared Wi-Fi has been a challenge but I've managed and the nuisance has not interfered with doing/seeing things.

Ian

kwackers
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby kwackers » 31 Aug 2019, 5:29pm

The RAW's are the issue for me.

On the one hand there's so much you can do with a raw image, including fixing up lighting problems and even getting a degree of hdr from them where the dynamic range is fairly large (particularly pulling out shadow detail).

But on the other they take up sooo much room! And ime it's not that often I need to dig out the raw that I often wonder why I bother.

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Cunobelin
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby Cunobelin » 31 Aug 2019, 5:49pm

Most systems for photos will not store RAW images.

So personally I have an (ancient) Macbook Air and download the images by file transfer.

I then have two SD cards that I back up to.

I also download to the iPad and hence Apple's cloud

One SD card travels in my wallet and the other in the hand luggage

I also have sufficient memory. on the cameras (again hand luggage ) cards that I only delete the images once they are backed up to the three HDD at home

... and an old trick from the days of film when they used to get lost and misfiled..... Have a JPG on the media with an email address and mobile number so that if you lose the media, a finder can contact you

PH
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby PH » 31 Aug 2019, 6:08pm

I shot in RAW, convert to DNG as my older version of Lightroom is never going to support my cameras, discard those I'm not keeping, edit, then convert the keepers to JEPEG. Saved on PC with Lightroom, SSD elsewhere, some on Flickr and some printed. The SD cards are wiped to use again. I don't see any purpose in keeping RAW files unless I intend to re edit them. If I did, it wouldn't be on the SD card, they're designed for fast read and write, if nothing else it's a waste.
I don't keep many, it's a personal thing, but when I show them the intention is to tell a tale, and sometimes that's better done with 10 photos than 100. Sometimes others will direct me to their photos, and there's loads of them, many pretty much duplicates, it's easy to miss the great ones amongst them.

mercalia
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby mercalia » 31 Aug 2019, 7:54pm

I dont know what the format is on your SD cards, but for my simple Kodak they all use the FAT32 file system, so I can put the card in a reader and plug that into my PC. FAT32 is hardly the most reliable of file systems - was what Windows 95 used. Is easily corrupted. On the other hand I have many SD cards with files on that have never let me down.

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RickH
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby RickH » 1 Sep 2019, 8:45pm

I never keep images on the SD card - most of the time my dSLR has the same 32GB Sandisk card which gets reused over & over again. I (almost) always shoot RAW +JPG & it currently estimates space for 845 shots which is plenty to be going on with! :D All images are saved on a NAS with 2 mirrored 6TB discs (currently just under half full). If I could grab one thing in the event of a fire, or other disaster, the NAS would probably be it!

When we went away for 4 weeks a number of years ago I got an external HDD with built in card reader & rechargeable battery that could make a copy of cards without needing a computer (although I kept the data on the cards until we got back - only if I'd run out of space, which I didn't, then I would have deleted some). It only has 120GB drive in it so I may look at transplanting in a larger drive if I want to use it again - although I would have to see if it reads the newer larger capacity cards OK first. Especially if I want to back up my video camera that records in 30 minute 17+GB chunks (I use a 256GB SD card in that)! :shock:

Psamathe
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby Psamathe » 1 Sep 2019, 9:02pm

RickH wrote:.... All images are saved on a NAS with 2 mirrored 6TB discs (currently just under half full). If I could grab one thing in the event of a fire, or other disaster, the NAS would probably be it!......

One of my worries about backup disks is e.g. your NAS might be the one thing you grab in the event of a fire but if you were burgled then the thieves might chose the same item to grab. I end-up using a lot of external HDDs and hide them around the house and elsewhere and then I forget where they are all hidden! I've lost several that way but the other day I found one I'd given=up on.

Ian

Freddie
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Re: SD Card Security

Postby Freddie » 2 Sep 2019, 12:33pm

Lol, I think that is a bit extreme, what thief is going to grab a NAS? Hiding drives too....I think you might need to talk to someone about all this. Seriously, multiple backups on the cloud (must be a program the can sync several accounts simultaneously) would be far better and more secure.

You would stop finding old hard drives down the back of the sofa then! :wink: