Video Backup

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by TaKashMoney, Jan 25, 2009.

  1. TaKashMoney macrumors 6502

    Jul 15, 2005
    Hey guys, I apologize if this has been covered, I just havent found an answer.

    I am currently editing a 90 minute documentary shot in HDV.

    I have two harddrives. One is a 2TB G-Raid for primary editing. The other is a 2TB Lacie solely for backup.

    What software would you recommend using to ensure safe and consistent backups?

    Thanks in advance,


    p.s. Oh and I hope it goes without saying, but I am on a mac using FCP.
  2. MrLatte23 macrumors regular

    Jul 18, 2007
    Two free choices are...

    Carbon Copy Cloner and/or Super Duper. I use CCC and have it set to automatically clone/back-up certain volumes or hard drives each night. Some for a bootable back-up others for data/video back up.
  3. TaKashMoney thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 15, 2005
    What are the pros/cons over using CCC instead of SuperDuper or vice-versa?
  4. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    Neither are all the great. What you really need are incremental backups. That means that you have a history of changes and can go back and get older versions of files.

    If you simply "clone" the disk here is what typically happens: You mess up a file and don't know it. It 's easy to do if you have 20 windows open you just hit a key when the cursor is in the wrong window and hours later do a save/quit. But it' OK because you have a backup. But then you make a new backup, over writing your only good copy of the file. It would have been better if your backup software did not overwrite the old copy of the file. You want "incremental".

    Time machine does incremental backups. So does other software like "Retrospect". The problem is that incremental backups are complicated and harder to understand so people go with "cloning" the drive be cause it is conceptuality easy. Apple did a great job with Time Machine to make incremental backups easy for most people to use.

    The other thing you have to work out is an off site backup. The best way to do this is to rotate your backup media. Every week or few days you take you backup set some place (in another building) and then use the oldest backup media for the nest backup. It is best to have three sets used in rotation.

    To design a backup system you have to identify the most likely cause of data loss. Most people figure it is disk failure and design a system for that but the most common reasons for data loss are (1) user error as described above. Deleting the wrong files or doing a "save" after a bad edit. (2) loss of the media do to theft of equipment, You'd better keep and off-site copy. (3) fire or flood or lightening hitting the power line, You'd better keep and off-site copy. Most people who have important data, are prepared for a disk failure so that isnot aleading causeof data loss
  5. chilipie macrumors 6502a


    May 8, 2006
    Maybe I'm getting confused, but doesn't it make sense to back-up the footage manually, and then use Time Machine for the edited project files?
  6. TaKashMoney thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 15, 2005
    Ok. you recommend backing up my scratchdisk with Time Machine.

    However, using time machine, if the disk fails then I wouldnt be able to simply plug in the backup and continue editing, right? I'd have to replace the failed disk and restore from time machine.

    I agree with you having 2 backups. Unfortunately that is just not an economic possibility at this point.

    For Final Cut Pro, being a non-destructive editor, none of my source files should be altered with the editing. So even if the project file contains a bad edit, I will always be able to reference the original imported media. Am I right with this?
  7. KeithPratt macrumors 6502a

    Mar 6, 2007
    I wouldn't recommend Time Machine. If the purpose of backing up your scratch disk is to avert having to recapture footage from the tapes, I'd just make a clone. You can make a one using Carbon Copy Cloner or SuperDuper! (amongst others), but the easiest way is to use the 'Restore' function in Disk Utility and create a block level copy.

    As for having two copies, I'd happily run the risk of having only one back-up if I still had access to the tapes.

    A better use of CCC or SuperDuper! is to back-up your system drive. I'm pretty sure they're both capable of scheduled incremental back-up. Alternatively you can just drag-and-drop your FCP project file to a USB drive and keep it in your pocket.
  8. MrLatte23 macrumors regular

    Jul 18, 2007
    Only familiar with CCC...

    But from what I hear both are very similar and for a few dollars you can unlock other advanced features. (I still use the free version) I'm also not familiar with the Restore feature in Disk Utility so I can't say if it can be set to automatically back-up your scratch disk by itself or if you need to manually open the software and select the volumes to completely clone..

    I do know that every night Carbon Copy Cloner automatically backs-up each of my different scratch disks to their respective back-up volumes, only adding or replacing anything that has changed; which is sometimes only a few megabytes or many gigabytes if I've added some new footage. Takes a few minutes even if it's a few GB of footage. I even back up all project files and personalized settings (windows layouts) to a volume so that's backed up as well.

    I used to use Automator, but prefer the ease of CCC. Some people feel Time Machine still has some bugs and corrupts files during restores so I'm still using it sparingly.

    Doesn't need to be complex or costly, just reliable and something that works for you.
  9. TaKashMoney thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 15, 2005
    Thanks for the tips and advice. I have decided to use Super Duper to keep all of the captured footage and media backed up. However, I will be keeping my project file on my system HD which is backed up with Time Machine. This way I can always go back if a bad edit occurs and also save the 75 hours of reimporting footage if my scratch disk goes down.

    Thanks again for the help!

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