Asset Management Essay 2 - Back Me Up

As a short addendum to yesterdays hard drive rant I wanted to talk a tiny bit about offsite backup.  RAID 1, and physical prints, and the original negatives are all well and good until your house or, in my case, apartment burns down.  I'd rather not lose everything I've ever shot, so I've been looking for off site backup solutions.

Of course, I'm not going to backup 500GB of data over the net, but I can save full resolution jpegs of my final work as a last-ditch lifeboat.  So when I'm done working on an image, I've started saving these jpegs into a folder called 'Ark', as in Noah's.  Then it's just a matter of where to put them.

I could just buy more space on my webserver and ftp them up there, but that seemed clunky.

For a while during the 365 portraits project I was using Mozy to back-up final jpegs just in case.  You install this little app that runs in the background and keeps an eye on certain folders you designate, uploading any changes to the mozy servers.  This system is great and at $5 a month for unlimited space, seemed pretty good.  But I decided to do a little more research...

And I found an app called Jungle Disk, which is a front-end for Amazon's S3 (simple storage service).  Now, S3 is really designed for developers and such, but Jungle Disk makes it easy and it works just like Mozy does. 

So why is it better?  Cost and Longevity.  First, you pay for each GB of storage and transfer, but the costs are so low.. 15 cents a GB/mo that unless you're putting TONS of stuff up there, it'll be cheaper than Mozy.  I've transfered a few GB up there already and so far my bill is 38 cents.

And I'm sure the Mozy people are secure and what-have-you, but I'd bet on Amazon being around in 10 years more than them..  but maybe that's my own bias.  According to what I've read, Amazon keeps redundant copies at multiple data centers, and jungle disk encrypts the data between you and the server, so it's secure.  Oh, and they're both cross platform, so the can be used on both Mac and Windows.

I've only been using it for a couple of days, but it looks pretty good so far.