Newbie -Photographer help with Mac and Cloud storage

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Meatball.Jones, May 16, 2014.

  1. Meatball.Jones macrumors newbie

    May 16, 2014
    I am looking for some help with my image library, Iphoto and possibly cloud storage.

    I'll be frank, I'm not the brightest star in the sky, so please go easy on me! AND, please speak to me in "dum dum" terms if possible :)

    I have a lot of pictures, about 20 thou to be exact, maybe more.

    I have an OLD desktop Mac (which I am surprised still runs) and I have this Macbook, old as well.

    I am running Mac OS X 10.6.8 on this thing...

    Here is my issue -

    I need my digital images safe from these old computers dying out on me. There are SO many that I can't really see how I'd move them anywhere.
    It's basically my whole life's work on these Macs and my business work as well.

    I'd like to be able to use my pictures at the drop of a hat without digging through an external hard drive and extensions and all because when I look in my external hard drive... I'm clueless where these pics all are.

    My need to to grab a pic, work on it in photoshop and or use it with my design software (I cut custom vinyl for a home based business) and send it to my cutter.
    I need the photos ready and easily accessible and I'd like to also be able to save them again after editing -BUT I have no room left on this laptop or the desktop.

    IS cloud storage something where I can dump all of my photos and then clean out these computers to free up space?

    I am worried that once I delete them from the computers, these cloud based storage things will try to sync and thus delete all the pictures I have been trying to save.

    I just want them safe somewhere, floating around on the internet possibly, because I'm scared to death these old computers will crash one day and I'll be left with nothing, especially all the vector files and SVG files I have created for the work I do.

    I have read about dropbox, but I have also read that it does a "sync" and some have complained that they delete pictures and then Dropbox does as well.
    This is my worst fear!

    I'd honestly like to have something like an Ipad, a hand held device with a screen for media. It could hold 256GB or more and I could have file folders to organize my work and even scroll through thumbnails of each image.
    I could take it with me when I travel, especially if I was to take my vinyl cutting on the road... Anything like that exist? (this is me dreaming here!)

    OR could I store in a cloud somewhere, work from the cloud and save back to the cloud all while having free space on my laptops?

    Anyone that can help shove me in the right direction - I'd be forever grateful!

    - Signed,
    A mom in over her head...
  2. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    What are you using for a backup now? The external drive?

    The first thing you need to do is make SURE you have a backup, that is, MORE than a single copy of these photos on SEPARATE hard drives. Now. Before you do anything else.

    And how do you access the photos now? Do you just poke around in folders? or use iPhoto? I suspect that if they are hard to find OUTSIDE of iPhoto that you have let iPhoto put them all in an iPhoto library. Maybe.

    But we'd need to know some more specifics. You can put them all in the cloud, but first you need to find them all. And make sure you have copies because you're right in thinking that if something goes wrong in the process of putting them in the cloud you want to make sure they don't go "poof!" forever.
  3. Meatball.Jones thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 16, 2014
    Yes, I have them in easy to reach places for now.
    One is Iphoto for raw images right from my camera, the second is a file I created simply named "Photoshop edits" and it has subfolders of course with my jobs in them.
    From that I have only two other files. One for vector and one for SVG cuts also for my home based business.

    Eeek.. What else should I add? When I dump these into a "cloud" do my little organization methods stay he same? as in... uhm... Can I see it by folders? I'm an extremely VISUAL person! I learn slow, I'm a bit scatter brained but once I "get" something, I can then excel at it if you know what I mean... Sort of organized chaos in my brain!

    Thank you for answering by the way!
  4. Designer Dale macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

    Mar 25, 2009
    Folding space
    Cloud storage isn't going to help your organization. It's like a hard drive that isn't in your home or office, just somewhere strange that you don't really have any control over. Sit down with :eek: paper and pencil :eek: and devise a folder system that will meet your needs and set it up on a hard drive. Make a note of that system and stick it to your screen and never deviate from it. Keep it updated and don't use it for any other storage. Keep it simple.

  5. Meatball.Jones, May 16, 2014
    Last edited: May 16, 2014

    Meatball.Jones thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 16, 2014
    I'm not looking to help in organization. I have four basic folders I use and know where my photos are.

    I'm interested in what type of cloud storage would I need, and how does it LOOK once I've dumped all my photos there. That's what I mean by visual. The external drive I have is one extension after another and frankly looks like a hot mess when I open it up...

    SO if I dump say, all 30K files as is, divided by the folders they are in now (Iphoto (raw images), Photoshop and some work folders) will they stay that way so I can find them?


    Does it just dump all 30K images into one big file and I then have to dig around through each image? That would really stink.

    I guess what I'm saying is; is there organization on the cloud as I have my own here on the laptop? Got the laptop thing down pat. I'm not really one of those who just have files running amuck.

    What I'm looking for is a way to store a massive amount of photos and digital work, but not on my laptop or desktop anymore, BUT I want easy access to them and don't trust a external hard drive.. though.. I have my worries on how a cloud works as well as far as protection and keeping my images for forever use.

    So -Which cloud based is best? Icloud? Dropbox? Google?
    and, are they slow and sluggish? or easy to use for people like me?
  6. cupcakes2000 macrumors 6502

    Apr 13, 2010
    As someone mentioned before you need to back it all up. That should be your first job. Right Click all four ( or however many) of you organised chaos, and select get info. Find out how much data you have.
    Next buy two external USB hard drives maybe double that amount. ( or multiples if needed).
    Then call them back up 1 and back up 2, and drag and drop a copy of your folders in to each one.
    Then your stuff will be safe whilst you experiment with the cloud. (I can't help you with that).
    But you are expressing somewhat unecessary concerns about backing up to a hard drive. It's so important!!
  7. Designer Dale macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

    Mar 25, 2009
    Folding space
    I don't think anyone on this forum really trusts cloud storage, so you might not get the help you want.

    Most of us do HD storage only. One on the desk, one in a drawer and one off site. This guards against user error, theft and fire or flood.

    If you have your stuff in the cloud and a worm eats their servers, are you still properly backed up? Do any of the cloud services offer insurance to cover loss of pro files stored on their stuff? If not, why?

  8. ChrisA, May 17, 2014
    Last edited: May 17, 2014

    ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    FIRST before you do one more thing make a backup. Copy all the old photos to an external disk drive, eject the drive, unplug it, Now connect it back and verify you can see all the photos on the drive. Just use Finder and look at some photos. eject/unplug it again, place the drive inside a box and then move it to another building. If you have an office at work, that is a good place or a friend/relatives house.

    OK now you have one backup in a safe place.

    Time to setup a reliable backup system. Time Machine works well. Get yet one more external disk and set up Time machine. Let it finish it's first backup. This could take hours.

    OK finally you have the minimum number for backups and it's sfe to mass with you data. Don't do anything until you are at this point.

    If you DO you some type of cloud store, use it as a last ditch backup, after your local backup is destroy in a house fire. Actually the most common way to loose data is theft of the equipment. So make sure one of your on-site backups is NT near the computer. Fire safes are a good place. But if that fails then you pull the data back from Backblaze or Crashplan or Carbonite.
  9. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    Most people with a LOT of data have no other way to do an off-site backup. Pick a backup service like Backblaze or Crashplan and use that a your off-site backup.

    You are right in that few people would use a cloud serve as their ONLY storage. What you want is a local disk based copy that use use, a local disk based backup and an off-site backup. This gives you the dead-minimum you need.

    The rules for data you do not want to loos is that at all times you need the data on three different physical media AND at two different geographical locations. If this is truly important data you'd add one more copy (maybe a clone of a disk in a fire safe.)

    Next think about what you really need. do you need 20,000 photos? Really? The quality of you collected would double if you would remove the poorest quality. I delete very early in the editing process.

Share This Page