This may take a while

As regular readers[1] will have gathered, I’ve been taking lots of pictures since I got my Canon 30D last year. Now this is all very nice, and I’m having lots of fun with the beast, but it does lead to a bit of a problem: backups. I like to keep the original RAW files that come from the camera for all but the most hopeless pictures. This means I can always go back and process an image that I didn’t get round to previously, or do something different (and maybe even better) than I did the first time.

Well, that’s not a problem – I’ve got a nice big external hard drive with plenty of room for my photos. But being the kind of techie geek that I am, I know that there’s no substitute for an off-site backup. I have burnt some of the pictures to CD, and I keep the CDs in the bottom of a drawer at work, but now there are so many files that even if I switch to DVDs, it’ll take too long to get round to making those important backups.

So what I really wanted was a nice online solution. Somewhere I could upload my images and where backups would be Someone Else’s Problem. Well, I looked, and there are some quite nifty services available, at quite reasonable prices. Well, so long as you just want to keep a couple of GB or thereabouts. My photos archive folder is currently around 42GB, which makes any online service that I’ve seen a wee bit too expensive.

Then, on Saturday, I had a :duh: moment. My web hosting at Dreamhost currently gives me 310GB, and that increases by 2GB each week. And as I can create any folders I like on the server, I thought that it would make an ideal off-site backup solution. So I set my FTP client to synchronise my local copy of the photo archive with a new folder on the server. As you can see, it’s going to take a while…

Backups are good

Backups are good

However, it is uploading at somewhere around 700kb/s, which is pretty much what I’m supposed to get from my Virgin 20Mb service. Such a shame that upload speeds are never as fast as download speeds on domestic connections, isn’t it?

The good thing about using synchronise is that if the upload is interrupted[2], it won’t be a problem to upload the rest of the files, and it will be easy to keep it up to date as I add more pictures.

[1] Those lovely mythical creatures. I suspect my readers are more irregular. Or unusual, at the very least. :wave:
[2] It’s been running smoothly for about three whole days, which is pretty good…