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It’s extremely important to keep backups of not just your images but, if you use non-destructive photo-editing software, the changes that you’ve made them. If you use a Mac, you can use the Time Machine feature built into the operating system to back up not just your files and applications, but all their data and indeed your whole system configuration. It runs automatically in the background but does require quite a lot of archive storage space on connected drives. If you use Windows, or you prefer a more targeted backup strategy, many external drives come with backup software included. Catalog-based programs like Lightroom and Capture One also have built-in backup tools for backing up your catalog settings and edits (though not usually the image files themselves).
Backup software usually starts with a ‘full backup’ and follows up with ‘incremental backups’ at regular intervals. This not the same as ‘mirroring’ software, as offered by LaCie, for example, which keeps two sets of folders and files identical by synchronising changes between them. This too can be useful, but it’s not a backup as such.
RAID drives offer data mirroring to protect you against hard drive failures, but again this is not a backup as such because backups are a record of past work, not just current work, and should be stored on a separate drive, ideally in a separate location – to protect against fire, theft and other disasters.Back