When venturing outdoors on a shoot I follow a pretty strict backup routine. Over the last few months I have been using G-Technology’s new rugged all-terain drives to store and back up my images when on the move. On reviewing the drives I thought I would document my backup routine and how I protect my photos from malfunction or user error.
The Ultimate in Backup
The G-Drive ev ATC drive does an amazing job in protecting your data from water, dust and being dropped!
Firstly I replace the card after each session, I don’t mean I buy a new card but after a session I will put one card away into my card holder and put a fresh card into the camera. When I return to base I import the images from the cards onto the hard drive in my Macbook computer (by importing the images into my Lightroom catalogue for this shoot).
Once imported I store the cards in the holder and complete a full duplication of the catalogue on to two separate drives. One of the drives will remain with the computer and the other will head back out into the mountains the next day as I always like having a backup of the data with me at all times, it’s belt and braces I know.
I use the brilliant ‘Carbon Copy Cloner’ Application for mac to mirror the Lightroom Catalogue on to each drive, to save time I don’t clone the entire drive, just the Lightroom folder.
I use a G-Drive ev RaW drive complete with rubber bumper for the local stay-at-home backup and the G-Drive ev ATC drive for the backup that will venture back up in my rucksack. Carbon Copy Cloner has a brilliant safety net feature so if I delete anything from the main catalogue CCC will keep the deleted file on the backup disk for as long as there is enough free space to do so.
The G-Drive ev ATC is a remarkable piece of technology and it claims to protect the high quality drive offering a watertight drive compartment, which floats when dropped in water, and the ability to withstand a two meter drop and data remains protected from pressure, shock, water and dust. These were bold claims so I decided to put the drive through a series of tests out on the wet mountain side. From drop tests through to allowing the drive to head down a fast flowing river.
Testing in Action
There is something nerve wrecking about dropping a hard drive even onto soft ground. It feels unnatural but we need to know if the G-Drives were going to protect our data in the extremes of the mountains. We brought a laptop with us so we could test the drive after each workout so if it was to fail we could pinpoint the weakness.
I dropped the drive on to a grass bank, on to lose stones, I dropped down the side of the mountain and let it roll. Finally I dropped the drive into a reasonably fast flowing river that tapers at the bottom. I hoped it would have stopped on a rock on the way down but as the ATC case floats amazingly well it managed to make its way to the very end of the section of river. I nervously plugged the drive in its now slightly scratched ATC case into the computer and it booted up without issue.
The EV ATC is a drop resistant, water resistant, pressure resistant, dust resistant, performance drive that is compatible with with G-Techology EV range of drives. The build quality is remarkably sturdy but it light enough to float in water, if you are looking the ultimate in ‘rugged performance’ owning at least one EV ATC is highly recommended. We did everything we could to test the the ATC drive to its limit and although it is highly unlikely that a drive would end up flowing down a river it was a massive reassure to know that it could and the data would remain safe. Note : Although the ATC drive offers a Thunderbolt connection you can take the drive out of the bay and connect it to your computer via USB3.
Photo Credit : FlixelPix