Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by glocke12, Nov 12, 2011.

  1. glocke12 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2008
    Just wondering how people manage their libraries, as I am wondering if there is a better way I could be doing things from a workflow/storage/backup storage standpoint.

    I have a 15" MBP, and a 27"imac.

    Files get imported into both my MBP and my iMac, so in essence I basically have libraries on both machines that are close to being duplicates, but are not.

    This probably is not the most efficient system. Would I be better off using an external firewire based HD that I can move from one computer to the other, or working from a library that is on a networked storage connected by ethernet cables?
  2. emorydunn macrumors 6502


    Jun 5, 2006
    Austin Texas
    If you need to edit your photos on multiple computers then an external drive is the only way to go.

    Now, when you say imported on to both do you mean you have a memory card full of photos, plug it into the iMac and import and then plug it into the MBP and import? Do you edit on one machine and have clean backups on the other or do you make edits to photos on both?

    Also, what software are you using?

    I create a new library every three months (probably overkill). The current month'a library is stored on an internal SSD on my MBP and the old libraries are stored on an external RAID.
  3. glocke12 thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2008
    Thats exactly what I do.

    I don't have a hard and fast rule. Generally I don't do much editing, but when I do I make edits to photos on one machine or another. Basically all the images are in one machine, but there may be different versions of the same photo on each machine.

    I settled on Aperture, but also use PS5 a little.

    What point does creating a new library so often serve?

    I have an external RAID that I use for my media library, I have been thinking about running ethernet cable to it and using it as a central photo server also, but Im really thinking Im better off using a small external firewire drive and just using the RAID for backup, along with an additional drive stored in a safe-deposit box that contains another backup. One thing I have learned is you ca never have too many backups.
  4. emorydunn macrumors 6502


    Jun 5, 2006
    Austin Texas
    For me having multiple libraries of a couple things:
    1) it makes Aperture faster. In my findings Aperture will work with giant libraries but that doesn't mean it has to like it. I also edit a lot of very large (upwards of 70 MP) film scans and the fewer images Aperture has to deal with the happier it is.
    2) storage. I have a laptop with in internal 120GB SSD and I have a lot of photos. The last time I checked I think my Aperture libraries combined were the single largest file type on my computer. This means I can't store all my photos on my internal drive.
    3) it makes it easier to back up. Backing up a whole bunch of small things is generally less prone to failing half way through (Murphy's Law).

    Now then, there is a downside: There's no good way to deal with all those libraries. Aperture can open any library but there's no way to "peek" inside without just opening the whole thing.
  5. mofunk macrumors 68020


    Aug 26, 2009
    After I upload to my computer. I label each batch inside a folder. Depending on the time frame, I back everything up on a disc. The disc is labelled date and events.

    I use Lightroom 3/iphoto/Aperture and with each I make sure the folders are labelled. Before when I used iPhoto 1.0 it wasn't that easy. When you backed up everything, the event name would disappear whenever you uploaded to current iPhoto. Only thing you were left with was the dates. So now I make sure each batch/folder is labelled with a Name and date. In LR3, they use tags. I wonder if that info will be saved as well. We shall see.

    I haven't tried it, but some people will change the file name. This way it will also be easy to find.
  6. odinsride macrumors 65816


    Apr 11, 2007
    I have my main library on my Mac Pro and do the majority of my work there.

    However, if I go on a trip I will usually take my MacBook Pro and offload pictures onto it. I carry a 1TB external with me when I travel for backing up RAWs so my pictures exist on my MBP and the External when I'm traveling.

    If I have time while on the road, I'll start processing pictures on my MBP. Once I return home I merge the MBP library with my Mac Pro library and finish processing from there. I also move my RAW backups from the portable external to my main RAW backup drive. Once everything is on my Mac Pro I remove the library on my MBP and start a fresh one the next time I travel.

    It works for me as I only travel once a month or so. If you're constantly in and out this might not be the best solution for that case I would make the MBP the "master" library, or at least keep your most current and/or unprocessed projects there.

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