“Even paranoids have enemies” — Henry Kissinger

I have always been paranoid about my backups.  My home system is a Mac and I store all my files on a NAS (Network Attached Storage).  The one I use is a My Book Live Duo from Western Digital.  It my be a little dated, there are more recent versions of this system, but it does the job for me.

By having all my work files on a network drive, I can access them from any computer in the house or even remotely if I allow it.  My kids have their school files on the NAS and access them either from the Mac or an old Linux laptop I’ve configured for them.  I can use the Mac or my MacBook.

The NAS has two 2TB drives and I’ve configured it in RAID 1 which means that all the data written on one of the drives is mirrored to the other.  Okay, that’s the first level of backups.

The My Book is also a Time Machine server, so I have my Mac backed up to the Time Machine.

But what happens if some disaster strikes my home?  Then both of the mirror drives are ruined and I lose my data.  The solution is to have an off-site backup.  Every month, I create what Western Digital calls a SafePoint, which is a copy of all the files on the My Book including the Time Machine.  I copy everything on a portable Seagate slim drive that I can slip into my pocket and store at an off site location.

When I do a photoshoot and have pictures that I don’t want to lose, I import the pictures through Lightroom with a backup copy to a cloud drive.  Lightroom does this automatically for me.

So now I know that the worst that can happen to me is losing a month’s worth of data, but I can still recover most of this from the cloud.  I can live with that.  I know that I can get a new Mac and restore the Time Machine backup.  I can copy all my files to a new NAS and download the rest of my pictures from the cloud.

I sleep well at night.


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