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A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration

Pursuit

Kihei, US
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Pursuit Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Jan 2003
Mon 04-Feb-08 07:40 AM

There are a good number of questions in this forum about how people back-up and archive photos, or how they organize photos. There are as many answers to these questions as there are Nikonians. And each configuration has its own merits. Here is a setup that I have settled on which I find suits my needs well. I thought I would share it with others who might be trying to come to grips with how to organize their environment.

Like photography gear, you are likely to try a few “exploratory” approaches on the way to an ultimate solution. My first tripod comes to mind when I say this. I knew I needed a tripod to take pictures of eagles with a long lens. And I had read that I should go straight to a quality tripod with a good ballhead or gimbal system. But that didn’t stop me from wasting $35 on a useless tripod (with a built-in swivel head) before deciding that I should have saved my pennies until I could afford a proper solution. The workflow configuration I describe below has already gone through this growing period and represents what I now consider to be the end-result. That is, I don’t really foresee anything being added to my workflow hardware wishlist any time soon.

This workflow assumes you already have photos from a shoot on a set of CF cards or laptop or digital wallet of some kind and you are now home and ready to bring them into your workstation to start working on them.

My main objectives in building this system were:

   1. Provide fast editing capability for new photo shoots
   2. Provide reasonably fast access to all my photos (old and new)
   3. Use a simple organization scheme that doesn’t rely upon any special software
   4. Ensure there are two copies of photos at all times
   5. Have an offsite archive copy of all photos.

To meet these goals I use the following hardware:

       > Workstation with 3 hard drives:
            Drive1: 140GB, Operating System
            Drive2: 140GB, Data (photo shoots)
            Drive 3: 186GB, Backup of data

      > NAS Server 1: 1TB, Primary long-term data storage (Buffalo Tech, Terastation)
      > NAS Server 2: 1 TB, Secondary long-term data storage (Buffalo Tech, Terastation)

      > USB Drive 1: 750GB, USB drive used in conjunction with USB Drive 2 for rotating offsite archiving.
      > USB Drive 2: 750GB, USB drive used in conjunction with USB Drive 1 for rotating offsite archiving.

Click on image to view larger version


On my workstation I have a folder on Drive2 called “$ActiveProjects”. All new photo shoots go into subfolders of this folder. Each subfolder is assigned a name that starts with the date in YYMMDD format followed by a short description of what I shot. For example:

   Directory of D:\$ActiveProjects
      <DIR> 071204 - Sea Lions in Monterey
      <DIR> 080109 - Squamish Eagles
      <DIR> 080116 - Butterfly Exhibit

By prefixing each folder with the date in YYMMDD format all directory listings or browser views of my photo projects are always in chronological order. I use this same folder naming scheme throughout my process. I now have over 150 individual photo folders and I find this provides all the organization I need to find a shot from, say, the trip to Yellowstone in 2003.

Once I have copied my photos into their $ActiveProjects subfolder, I immediately copy that subfolder to my third drive, the backup drive. I then set about pruning and editing the photos in the $ActiveProjects subfolder. The copy of the photos on the backup drive are considered to be a read-only “Safety Blanket” during this pruning and editing phase, just in case I get carried away in my pruning.

When I am satisfied with my pruning and editing I move the photo shoot subfolder from my workstation to my primary NAS server, a Buffalo Tech Terastation. This is a small box that connects to an Ethernet and is a dedicated file server. My 1TB servers provide 750GB of storage configured in RAID 5 (so they have some fault tolerance built in). Although a NAS Server is slower to access than a local hard drive, it is certainly fast enough for the occasional print job or web posting. And it is nice to have all 150 of my past photo shoots available all the time.

My primary NAS Server is configured to automatically back itself up the secondary NAS Server nightly, and send me email with the results. I have the two NAS Servers on opposite ends of the house to reduce the risk of loss due to fire or storm damage. Once I am sure the photos are on both NAS Servers I can comfortably delete the safety blanket backup copy left on my workstation.

Sometime shortly after moving the photo shoot to the secondary NAS Server I use Windows’ file browser to take a snapshot of the secondary NAS Server onto one of my removable USB drives. Then I take that USB drive offsite, bringing back the USB drive that had previously been offsite.

That’s it.

Note that, although I use 3 drives in my workstation, you could easily make due with 2 hard drives. In that case I would create a $Backup folder on the main (Operating System) drive and keep the temporary “Safety Blanket” folders in there.

The Terastation servers are about $550 for a 1TB version or $750 for a 2TB version. The 750GB USB drives are about $160 each. If cost is a primary concern, you can accomplish the same scheme using three 750GB USB drives. In that case you would have 1 USB drive as the Primary Server and use the other two, in an alternating fashion, as the Secondary Server and the Offsite Archive. To set up an automatic backup between a Primary USB server and a Secondary USB Server I would recommend something like Microsoft’s SyncToy utility). And every so often you would want to switch the Secondary USB server with the offsite Archive USB server so that your offsite archive was reasonably up to date.

So, assuming you have a workstation with two hard drives, you can build this configuration for about $1,300 (using 2 terastations and 2 USB drives). If you went with the 3 USB drive approach, then it would only cost about $480.




Attachment #1, (jpg file)

esantos

McAllen, US
12213 posts

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#1. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 0

esantos Moderator Nikonians Resources Writer. Recognized for his outstanding reviews on printers and printing articles. Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas, including Landscape Photography Awarded for his extraordinary accomplishments in Landscape Photography. His work has been exhibited at the Smithsonian. Nikonian since 10th Nov 2002
Mon 04-Feb-08 04:31 PM

Excellent post, thank you! I'm going to pin this to the top so that we can all benefit from it.

Ernesto Santos
esartprints.com Ernesto Santos Photography

OzPhotoMan

AU
193 posts

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#2. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 0

OzPhotoMan Registered since 15th Jul 2006
Thu 10-Apr-08 11:19 AM

Hi,

I've just come across this and it is exactly what I am looking for. I do something similar at the moment with file/directory naming, however I do not have a good h/w solution yet.

My question is, how do you define shoots of the same subject on different dates?

Like this?

071204 - Sea Lions in Monterey
080116 - Sea Lions in Monterey

etc?

Jim.

Pursuit

Kihei, US
2110 posts

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#3. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 2

Pursuit Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Jan 2003
Thu 10-Apr-08 09:53 PM

Yes, that is what it would look like. When you have lots and lots of folders with lots and lots of different shoots it would look something like:

070221 - Upper Antelope Canyon
070222 - Zion National Park
070224 - Bryce
070225 - Bryce
070226 - Arches & Other Utah
070226 - Bryce
070227 - Balanced Rock
070227 - Turret Arch and Windows
070228 - Arches NP in new snow
070301 - Arches - Landscape Arch
070302 - Upper Antelope Canyon
070303 - Lower Antelope Canyon
070420 - Yellowstone
070701 - Summer '07 in Chelan
070728 - Colby Johnstone Guitar Songs
070921 - Build a House Party
071009 - Carli Tangeman Catering
071103 - Mackay football highlights
071104 - Erin's choir concert
071106 - Various photos from spring and summer
071107 - Scrapbook Pictures for Lisa's B'day Present
071203 - Pelicans in a Line - Marin county
071204 - Sea Lions in Monterey
071204 - Waves crashing on rocks in Monterey
080109 - Squamish Eagles
080110 - Squamish Eagles
080220 - Lunar Eclipse
080225 - Creek and Falls by Monroe
080302 - Playing around with a D300
080306 - Great Blue Herons in Bothell
080406 - Hawaii Volcano and Lava

Jim Kelly
More wag, less bark. (anon)

OzPhotoMan

AU
193 posts

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#4. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 3

OzPhotoMan Registered since 15th Jul 2006
Fri 11-Apr-08 11:21 AM

Thanks Jim,

Looks a bit more elegant than my current method, which is

topic (landscape, seascape, cityscape etc)
location
date (yyyymmddd)
raw files
processed
jpegs
raw
tiffs
web use

Jim

purple6816

US
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#5. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 4

purple6816 Registered since 21st Dec 2007
Wed 16-Apr-08 04:32 PM

I do basically the same setup except I use encryption on blue-ray burner to archive off site. These get shipped monthly to my fathers house 3000 miles away and get placed in his fireproof safe for long term archiving.

I also split off my on site storage to separate locations,

~ one cluster of rack mounted NAS's built with Ubuntu and 3Ware raid 5 controllers in my workshop on the other side of my property.
~ one cluster in the main house of yellow machines and tera stations.


This is connected to a Summit 450 Extreme Switch via dual gig fiber back to main house into a Cisco 3750 Switch.

I have a script that kicks off and sync's the in house to the workshop NAS's.

I also use Acronis and clone my laptop drive to the NAS's nightly because I use it in the field for work and this hobby.

I live in the NW and boy do we have windstorms better safe then sorry.

This is a great post thank you for sharing.

AudsDad

Naperville, US
297 posts

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#6. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 5

AudsDad Silver Member Nikonian since 16th Oct 2007
Sat 19-Apr-08 01:45 PM

Hi, Jim and thanks for this thread - it's got great ideas and is very well-written.

The date and topic designation for files archiving is excellent, but my question for you and/or others regards what ideas or software exist for tagging individual images (such as with keywords) to expedite pulling up specific themes later - e.g. bringing up all 'tree' shots from many different dates and places. I know keywording many many images would be a lot of work, but it could be done selectively for certain categories and would really be useful for certain applications.

Thanks, Peter

Pursuit

Kihei, US
2110 posts

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#7. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 6

Pursuit Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Jan 2003
Sat 19-Apr-08 02:50 PM

I once thought this would be important as my collection of images grew large. I spent quite a bit of time looking for a good solution, even participating in a beta test of some database software tailored toward photographers. But in the end it turns out that, unless you are a professional photographer with magazines and ad companies coming to you with specific requests, this is something that is never done. You may go looking for a specific tree-in-a-sunset photo that you took 5 years ago. But the fact that it was during a Serengeti safari will be adequate to find it using my scheme.

That's my experience anyway.

Jim Kelly
More wag, less bark. (anon)

OzPhotoMan

AU
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#8. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 7

OzPhotoMan Registered since 15th Jul 2006
Sat 19-Apr-08 10:23 PM

OK,

Jim is right, unless you are a pro databases can be overkill. You can name your files with the specific subject and or date, eg 20080420_sunset.nef. You can time stamp this as automatically as well with ViewNX or Breeze downloader.

Then do a file search for sunset and you will find them. I also use Thumbs Plus, but the search function is very clunky and you need to be a programmer to understand it.

On another note, does anyone know if there is s/w that will mirror one drive automatically (raid hardware not to be used) and then back up the second mirrored drive to a third drive?

Jim

AudsDad

Naperville, US
297 posts

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#9. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 8

AudsDad Silver Member Nikonian since 16th Oct 2007
Sun 20-Apr-08 03:22 AM

Thanks a lot, guys.

I am no pro. The form of cataloguing I inquired about would surely be too labor-intensive for me to be willing to keep up with it anyway.

For order and security, the system that Jim describes above sounds logical and doable.

Best Regards, Peter

Mystiqz

US
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#10. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 0

Mystiqz Registered since 16th Apr 2008
Sat 03-May-08 01:05 PM

thanks for info

ajgarza

Monterrey, MX
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#11. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 6

ajgarza Gold Member Donor Ribbon awarded for his very generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2014 Nikonian since 09th Aug 2007
Sat 03-May-08 08:00 PM

I use a very simple but practical approach. I shoot in raw, and keep two copies in external disks all the pictures in NEF. After finishing the edit I make a lite jpeg version of each picture and use Picassa for viewing and sharing. Pcassa allows you to store your pictures in many files, and then you can pick images to create albums by topic (one picture can go in several albums), and viewing is fast.

I always have two copies of NEF files, both before and after editing. From the CF card I download to my laptop and one external disk at the same time unsing Nikkon transfer. After editing, I make a copy in each external disk.

Very simple, and I carry in my laptop my complete collection of pictures. I have a family album, bird in flight, sunsets, etc.

I make folders names YYMM, and the event is decribed in each file name. I always keep the folders and files names identical in every step and backup.

What do you think?? To support a hobbie I think is OK.



Alejandro Garza

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

notes386

Peoria, US
243 posts

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#12. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 0

notes386 Gold Member Nikonian since 14th May 2008
Tue 01-Jul-08 09:48 PM

Thanks for the info- I use almost the same folder layout (yymmdd subject) just no "-". Been using it that way for years...
Now for my question- what about processor/memory? I have Athlon 64 duo-core, 2.2Ghz 4200+ proc. with 2G DDR 400 memory. GeoForce 6600 video. A couple of fast SATA drives...
But Capture NX is ridiculously slow. Using XP MCE (media center edition). Which cpu/ram/OS are you using?

Thanks,
Dan
D300, D70
Sigma DC 18-125 f3.5-5.6D
Sigma 70-300 D f4.5-5.6 APO
Sigma 24-70 f2.8 EXDG
AF VR-Nikkor 80-400 f4.5-5.6D

Pursuit

Kihei, US
2110 posts

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#13. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 12

Pursuit Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Jan 2003
Wed 02-Jul-08 02:31 PM

My main desktop system is:

AMD dual core X2 4400+
4GB ram
3 hard drives (one fast)
Matrox Millennium P650 PCIe 128 graphics card
Windows xp/pro

Jim Kelly
More wag, less bark. (anon)

notes386

Peoria, US
243 posts

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#14. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 13

notes386 Gold Member Nikonian since 14th May 2008
Wed 02-Jul-08 05:13 PM

Does your version of XP Pro see all 4G? My motherboard (Asus A8N-SLI Deluxe) says it would only see 3G if you put 4G in... I did some cache changes and upgraded the .net Framework to 3.5 to resolve my speed issues... Have 3 fast drives-

Dan

Pursuit

Kihei, US
2110 posts

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#15. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 14

Pursuit Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Jan 2003
Wed 02-Jul-08 07:29 PM

I also have a Asus A8N-SLI Deluxe, and yes, it sees all 4GB. You suffer a bit of a performance hit by installing four 1GB memory chips because it forces the memory controller to figure out which of the memory banks it has to go to for each read and write. So there is no point in buying the fastest memory you can find.

By using a 128MB graphics card I am able to utilize about 3.6GB of my RAM. The rest of the 4GB address space is used by device-associated memory (like the graphics card).

Jim Kelly
More wag, less bark. (anon)

Chas_B

US
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#16. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 15

Chas_B Registered since 19th Dec 2007
Tue 15-Jul-08 11:35 AM

I am wrestling with this objective in mind too, but not on such a grand scale.

Does this workstation have three separate HDs or is the single HD partitioned into 'C', 'D', and 'E' drives?

Chas_B

Pursuit

Kihei, US
2110 posts

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#17. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 16

Pursuit Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Jan 2003
Tue 15-Jul-08 01:42 PM

This particular system has three hard drives. But if you only want to use two hard drives that would work too (data on one drive, system and data backup on the other drive). I wouldn't partition the drives. That generally decreases your performance (due to the read-write head movement required to get to the various partitions).

Jim Kelly
More wag, less bark. (anon)

notes386

Peoria, US
243 posts

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#18. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 16

notes386 Gold Member Nikonian since 14th May 2008
Tue 15-Jul-08 10:52 PM

>I am wrestling with this objective in mind too, but not on
>such a grand scale.
>
>Does this workstation have three separate HDs or is the single
>HD partitioned into 'C', 'D', and 'E' drives?
>
>Chas_B

I have 3 SATA drives, C, K, and M. C is for XP and installed programs. K is for data/downloads. M is for photos/mp3's/videos (1TB)

I updated my swap file to use K, then the cache in CaptureNX to use M (or vice versa...)

Dan

CharlieS

US
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#19. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 8

CharlieS Registered since 29th Aug 2007
Thu 17-Jul-08 03:38 PM



>On another note, does anyone know if there is s/w that will
>mirror one drive automatically (raid hardware not to be used)
>and then back up the second mirrored drive to a third drive?


maybe kind of late to answer this one, but reciently i found a little free piece of software called cobian backup. its fully customizable to provide anything from one folder to an entire drive backup. Plus it can be run manually or do scheduled file copies to one or multiple drives, and in anything from incremental to full backups.
i dont have the url handy, but google cobian backup, it was one of the first hits on the list.

OzPhotoMan

AU
193 posts

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#20. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 19

OzPhotoMan Registered since 15th Jul 2006
Thu 17-Jul-08 09:28 PM

I use allway sync, which will do what you want automatically, every 5 miuntes if you want. I back up changed files every 30 minutes to two external USB drives. This is all automatic, with warnings for particular errors so you don't make mistakes. Not free, but not expensive either. Also their tech suuport is excellent.

Jim

dileshthaker

UK
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#21. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 7

dileshthaker Registered since 30th May 2007
Sun 27-Jul-08 06:03 PM

I have invested in a well known database ans cataloging workflow solution and painfully went through each photo (some 3000) and keyworded them mostly with regards to people and location. I particularly saw the value in typing my daughter's name and all pictures with her in, appearing before my eyes! Likewise I can get pictures with her and her mummy by entering keywords.

I think that I did this partly because the software had it and I thought this could be very powerful. However, I am only an keen amateur (very amateur!)and I do not often have a particular "shoot". My cards may span several weeks with different photo opportunities.

I am wondering whether all this was a waste of time - a now have a highbrid ofvarious file structures and naming conventions in my pictues folder - ie files all over the place. Keywording takes too long - since I often work long hours its hard to keep up.

I also love the result that NX often produces - my best prints have come from this software. I am now looking for a solution that simplifies things. I want to be able to see all my photos quickly.

Doing lots of thinking but not getting anywhere!

Regards

Dil

ikesysmi

US
4 posts

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#22. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 21

ikesysmi Registered since 14th Sep 2008
Sun 14-Sep-08 08:31 AM

>I am wondering whether all this was a waste of time - a now
>have a highbrid ofvarious file structures and naming
>conventions in my pictues folder - ie files all over the
>place. Keywording takes too long - since I often work long
>hours its hard to keep up.
>
>I also love the result that NX often produces - my best prints
>have come from this software. I am now looking for a solution
>that simplifies things. I want to be able to see all my
>photos quickly.
>
>Doing lots of thinking but not getting anywhere!


Dil,

There's a new breed of software out now called media managers. These semi-automatically updated databases are a real time-saver. The technology is such that your media manager software / database continuously maintains a browser-type base of folders, files, metadata, project info, etc. for ALL types of media files that perhsps span across your PC and even your entire network.

I'd like to recommend Microsoft's Expression Media (now version 2). I have found that even my Nikon Capture NX 2 software specifically supports information exchange with Microsoft's manager and so therefore, I'm not ever in a position where I'm forced to maintain multiple applications (as far as the cataloging of my media files are concerned). I jump back and forth seemlessly between my application programs and the Expression Media manager; flawlessly. And by the way, this product is able to import media file info directly from previously created databases (if you have it) and so I would say NO; you haven't wasted your time at all.

Here's a link to the Expression product page and you can download a trial version there!

http://www.microsoft.com/expression/products/Overview.aspx?key=media

Hope this helps you. Regards

ikesysmi

US
4 posts

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#23. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 12

ikesysmi Registered since 14th Sep 2008
Sun 14-Sep-08 09:00 AM | edited Sun 14-Sep-08 09:25 AM by ikesysmi

>Thanks for the info- I use almost the same folder layout
>(yymmdd subject) just no "-". Been using it
>that way for years...
>Now for my question- what about processor/memory? I have
>Athlon 64 duo-core, 2.2Ghz 4200+ proc. with 2G DDR 400 memory.
> GeoForce 6600 video. A couple of fast SATA drives...
>But Capture NX is ridiculously slow. Using XP MCE (media
>center edition). Which cpu/ram/OS are you using?
>
>Thanks,
>Dan
>D300, D70
>Sigma DC 18-125 f3.5-5.6D
>Sigma 70-300 D f4.5-5.6 APO
>Sigma 24-70 f2.8 EXDG
>AF VR-Nikkor 80-400 f4.5-5.6D
>
>
Hi there Dan! I basically built a brand new "monster" system so I can't compare it apples-to-apples with your own but I do have a suggestion or two for you as I also use NX2.

1. I would first increase your memory. This will give you the most bang for your buck as upgrading goes. Increase by another 2GB for a total of 4GB (Windows XP -- including XP media -- can handle up to 4GB total but in actuality due in part to other system devices such as your graphics card(s), your applications -- inlcuding your NX2 -- only see about 3GB of this).

Now, if you switch to XP-Pro we can support up to 128GB! But wait! If you've got the extra cash to go the 64-bit system route then spend a small additional amount and upgrade that puppy to 8GB! Okay, now we're talk'n! Oh, and memory is cheap right now, so buy the fastest your wallet will allow (make sure you match it to your motherboard though -- 1333 Mhz maybe)!

2. Right now, NX2 is probibly taxing your operating system resources (since I haven't a clue what other applications and/or drivers you might be running). So if you've got the room in your PC case (and your wallet), get your XP swap file off from that main system drive of yours and put it on a separate drive all by itself (in my case I bought a speedy SATA 32GB to use just for the swap drive and only spent $35 bucks). Don't forget to buy drive rails and cable(s) to mounnt it (most manufacturers don't include this).

By the way people ... from what I've been reading, there's an idea out there that we might be putting our operating system software onto a single solid-state drive instead of our current mix-mash of whiring hard disk drives. An isolated swap file onto a flash drive too! The cost of the solid states are steadily coming down but right now, much too pricey to implement (although the technology's there to do it).

3. You might also consider upgrading your GPU. I bought a GeForce 9800GT for just over a hundred bucks. These cards are SLI and so if you later find that your system seems to be "bottle-necking" again, you can "daisy-chain" two of these cards together for 2X video performance! Furthermore, this would allow you to us a dual-monitor setup and, as NX2 does support this feature (very nicely), you could display your workspace palette's and other support applications on one monitor and display your graphics (i.e. NX2, CS3) on the other. I just bought a 22" LCD for $130 bucks (that's pretty cheap for the this added flexibility)!

Now, assuming you haven't broke the bank at this point, you might even consider making the jump to a 64-bit operating system some day -- but just make sure your hardware will support it before making the jump. Heck, you'll probibly need a whole new computer by then!

Hope this helps! Regards

Pursuit

Kihei, US
2110 posts

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#24. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 23

Pursuit Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Jan 2003
Mon 15-Sep-08 05:16 AM


>
>3. You might also consider upgrading your GPU. I bought a
>GeForce 9800GT for just over a hundred bucks. These cards are
>SLI and so if you later find that your system seems to be
>"bottle-necking" again, you can
>"daisy-chain" two of these cards together for 2X
>video performance! Furthermore, this would allow you to us a
>dual-monitor setup and, as NX2 does support this feature (very
>nicely), you could display your workspace palette's and other
>support applications on one monitor and display your graphics
>(i.e. NX2, CS3) on the other. I just bought a 22" LCD for
>$130 bucks (that's pretty cheap for the this added
>flexibility)!

I agree with adding 2 more GB or RAM to improve performance. But a GeForce 9800GT would, at best, be equivalent to your 6600. If the 9800 had more graphics memory than your 6600 then it would be a downgrade. Two GeForce 9800GTs would be a considerable downgrade and would obviate any benefit that 4th GB of RAM might provide.

You do not want to use any more graphics memory than you absolutely need when building a photo workstation. There is nothing on a GeForce 9800GT that would provide an advantage over your GeForce 6600 for photo work. Photo work does not require 3D graphics processing or fast refresh, and it needs very little graphics memory.

Jim Kelly
More wag, less bark. (anon)

DaveBudnick

Orion, MI, US
159 posts

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#25. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 24

DaveBudnick Silver Member Nikonian since 22nd Apr 2006
Mon 15-Sep-08 05:14 PM

Very enjoyable and relevant thread. Here's what I do:
I name directories with a number (so they go in chronological order), then the season, then the year. I started about 7 years ago so I'm at a point where my directories go something like this:
26 Spring 2008
27 Summer 2008
28 Fall 2008
29 Winter 2009 (which actually includes images starting on Dec. 21).

Then, if I have a shoot of significant enough size, I create a subdirectory below that (for example, Detroit Grand Prix or the name of a person for whom I did a studio shoot).

I can generally find the images I need with this minimal level of cataloging. I use Lightroom 2, which is great, but I don't keyword. And I never rename files. Whatever name they got in camera is the name they'll have on the hard drives.

I currently use a single hard drive with OS and 3 seasons of photos. I have another 500GB internal drive for backup of the OS drive, and for all of the other photos. And I have a 250GB drive for backing up the data on the 500GB. All photos exist in at least 2 and in some cases three places.

To sync everything up, I use a free software tool called "Synchronize It!" to make all the directories look the same.

I don't do the offsite backup, but, I guess I should. Perhaps when I build a new system (perhaps soon), I'll use the 500GB (EIDE) drive with an external enclousre and turn it into a USB hard drive. Then, I'll have two drives to do offsite switching (at least until I get to 250GB).

This thread has really got me thinking.

Sport Squirrel

Helsinki, FI
40 posts

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#26. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 0

Sport Squirrel Registered since 02nd Feb 2006
Sun 26-Oct-08 06:15 PM



Here is my 2 cents to add this topic....

1. I recommend to everyone to have a offline backup
- buy 3 disks
- keep 1 at your PC in home
- keep 1 at your office, friends home...
- use 1 to switch disks so that there is allways 1 copy at offsite location

2. If you syncronize, you will syncronize your errors as well
- I copy new photos and files by just adding newones, no deletes
- time to time I rename a backup as "old" and create a new backup
- once the new backup is tested and replicated to all disks, I'll delete the old one

3. Test time to time your backups
- I use Microsoft's Synctoy and it has at least once "made the backup", but in reality it didn't

Best regards

Sport Squirrel








Camera: Nikon D200, D70, SB-800, SB-600, 50 1.8, 18-70, 70-300G, Sigma 70-200, Sigma 30 1.4, Tokina 12-24..

kfitzpat

Carmel, US
62 posts

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#27. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 25

kfitzpat Basic Member
Thu 13-Nov-08 04:28 PM

> And I never rename files. Whatever name they got in
>camera is the name they'll have on the hard drives.
>

Hi Dave,

I also do not rename my files. I simply place them in folders that are dated with the year first, then the actual dates of the shoot then a description (i.e. 2008 - 11-13-08 - Ducks on Lake). My camera recently hit the DSC_9999 number and started renumbering from DSC_0001. This seems like a silly question, but I need to ask anyway. If I have more than one file named, for instance, DSC_0001 and they are each in different folders, is there a risk of one being copied over another when copying and backing up files? I am guessing there is not a risk as long as they are in different folders. Am I correct?

Thanks for helping.

Kim
><>

Pursuit

Kihei, US
2110 posts

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#28. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 27

Pursuit Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Jan 2003
Thu 13-Nov-08 05:21 PM

Correct. As long as you don't copy files from one folder into another you won't hit this problem. Virtually all backup programs retain the folder hierarchy structure, which avoids problems during backup.

To avoid this problem entirely I use the file name prefix feature of Nikon's DSLRs. Instead of using the default prefix ("DSC_" or "_DSC"), I assign my own prefix that includes a couple leading digits. So instead of file names like: DSC_1234 I end up with file names like "_P012345". Each time you see the digit counter getting close to rolling over (that is, approaching 9999), you need to change your prefix. For me that meant changing from "P01" to "P02". Notice that with this simple change I won't hit a number wrap-around problem until I shoot one million shots.

Jim Kelly
More wag, less bark. (anon)

OzPhotoMan

AU
193 posts

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#29. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 27

OzPhotoMan Registered since 15th Jul 2006
Thu 13-Nov-08 07:42 PM

OK,

Good idea, but if you are sending that file to a client, how does he know quickly know the image is yours, amongst many others? I now prefix my images with my business name. I have had an image used without my permission because of this.

Also, renaming with a date/time shot sequence enables easy sorting in windows explorer. I have had instances where file sequence numbers have let me down in this regard, especially when creating in camera dupes which I sometimes do, maybe at the end of a long day's shoot.

Using a heirarchial folder structure is IMO not a good idea for long term storage. Peter Krogh's book is well worth the money.

Jim

Pursuit

Kihei, US
2110 posts

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#30. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 29

Pursuit Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Jan 2003
Fri 14-Nov-08 02:19 AM

I was trying to give an example of how to avoid name conflicts without extra work. Notice that using the camera file name does not require a rename during import yet solves the problem of duplicate file names.

There are some good arguments for renaming images as you bring them into the computer from the camera, or afterward. I do not do so because of the extra step involved and the inconvenience of having to deal with long file names. But I don't sell my pictures (at least, not the digital form of the images) and so I don't have to worry about someone else knowing where the image came from. However, if you really want to be sure your name is properly affixed to the image you should use the EXIF and/or IPTC data rather than relying upon just the file name. File names are too easily changed by customers or clients.

Jim Kelly
More wag, less bark. (anon)

RSchussel

Vallejo, US
421 posts

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#31. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 30

RSchussel Silver Member Nikonian since 24th Nov 2008
Mon 24-Nov-08 04:37 PM

I just went digital with a D90 which came with the CD containing Nikon Transfer and ViewNX.

My question is most of this forum is about CaptureNX 2.0.
Is this program different from what I have and is it worthbuying.

Thanks
Bob

DBarnes

US
267 posts

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#32. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 31

DBarnes Silver Member Nikonian since 25th Oct 2008
Thu 11-Dec-08 05:37 PM

>I just went digital with a D90 which came with the CD
>containing Nikon Transfer and ViewNX.
>
>My question is most of this forum is about CaptureNX 2.0.
>Is this program different from what I have and is it
>worthbuying.
>
>Thanks
>Bob
I'm in exactly the same situation, Bob. D90 and all.
I'd sure like to know about this NX2. Worth the money? And then once you've used that, which image gets saved? Original NEF, Copy JPG or what? I really wish there was a manual, or video on workflow for us newbies!
Thanks in advance for the help! I love reading the forums.
DAve

RSchussel

Vallejo, US
421 posts

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#33. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 32

RSchussel Silver Member Nikonian since 24th Nov 2008
Thu 11-Dec-08 06:42 PM

Dave
NX2 is a more powerful version of ViewNX. Think of NX2 as Nikons version of Photoshop.

As I just switch to a digital camera my experiences are limited. The reviews suggest that except for batch processing NX2 is a very good program--it is also significantly less expensive than photoshop about $120 to $170 vs $500.

If you want to learn how to do more sophicated editing ( such as editing small parts of a picture etc) NX2 is the way to go. If you just want some decent quickie fixes stay with ViewNX

For Nikon users NX2 and ViewNX has the advantage of being able to edit the RAW file(which is typically 10Megs or more per picture vs 3Meg max for a Jpeg file).

When edits are made a copy of the original is preserved.You can work on the RAW File ,Jpeg or Tiff file.

If you have a faster computer I would suggest editing the RAW file as it contains all of the information (every pixel etc) picked up by the cameras sensor.Jpeg is smaller but you lose some of the fine definition that might prove useful when editing.

The NX2 CD comes with a manual. Also the program has a help tutorial .Once you have read them I might suggest you obtain some of the NX2 books.

The CD contains NX2.0. After you load it go to the Nikon site and load the latest version.There is also a 60 day trial version but you need to pay full price to continue using it after the trial period.

The one thing I like about ViewNX is that you can scroll thru full size pictures and then decide which ones to eliminate.After I have done this I go to NX2 to do my editing.

Hope this info helps
Bob

rbr28

Bloomington, US
17 posts

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#34. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 26

rbr28 Registered since 01st Aug 2007
Sat 24-Jan-09 12:33 AM

Here's my configuration, not as well detailed as the original post

Linux workstation - rsynced to external drives, occasionally burned to DVD's for another level of backup. Home computer is also rsynced to my workstation at work (I work in IT so I have this flexibility). I'm cheap and won't pay for enough drives to support a decent raid configuration and it's not worthwhile to me to buy any kind of storage array. I have a home network running numerous servers, but my servers are older machines without enough storage to completely backup everything on my workstation and external drives.

Just a few notes worth mentioning about my setup. I'm an IT professional, familiar with databases, backup solutions, etc. For home use, rsync works incredibly well. I have simple one line "scripts" to do everything I need. With rsync I can decide with a switch whether I want deletes or not on my sync, and configure dozens of other options. It's very fast, and doesn't require having to maintain another application.

All my external drives are custom built (just buying a cheap case and whatever is the best $/GB drive at the time). These are very easy to upgrade whenever significantly larger drives get within my price range.

For managing my albums I use Digikam. Digikam does use sqlite as a database back-end. I could use mysql or some other database, but this works really well for me and is much easier to maintain. Digikam supports basic tagging and the database back-end and search capabilities make folder structure more or less irrelevant. The only reason I continue to use a folder structure that is somewhat logical (similar to original poster), is because it makes it easier if I access the folders via a file manager, or something other than Digikam.

vern

http://vw.homelinux.net/gallery2

rwhitaker

Pinecrest, US
50 posts

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#35. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 3

rwhitaker Registered since 19th Jan 2009
Mon 23-Feb-09 02:30 AM

I have been useing Lightroom for a year and a half and like it very much. I have gravitated to a file nameing stucture of yyyy as primary folder with month, day and discription as subfolders.
2009
01-02-Alligator farm
This keeps things cronological and as the years build up, I can close the previous years folder and just work with current year.

It seems to work well for me. Can anyboby see a long term downside with this?

Thanks

Robert

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wapiti

austin, US
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#36. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 34

wapiti Silver Member Donor Ribbon awarded for his support to the Fundraising Campaign 2014 Nikonian since 21st Dec 2002
Sun 29-Mar-09 02:07 PM

This is an excellent post. Wonderful imformation. Thanks.
Another one of the reasons that Nikonians is the best on the web.

Bill in Austin, TX
"When you come to the fork in the road, take it."
http://images.nikonians.org/galleries/useralbums.php

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Visit my Nikonians gallery.

giorgoc

Nicosia, CY
347 posts

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#37. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 36

giorgoc Registered since 02nd Mar 2009
Wed 01-Apr-09 09:53 PM

Hi there,

Nice post - and although each one can use his own workflow it's nice to share ideas like these.

I am new into Nikonians and don't have a lot of photos so never thought of ways in solving this 'problem'.

What I can recommend though is a small and light tool, (and cheap really), called SyncBackSE (http://www.2brightsparks.com/syncback/sbse-features.html).

This tool can be easily be programmed to automatically copy folders from folder to folder, from drive to drive, from PC to PC, even from your PC to an offside FTP server. What I really like, is that fact that it can be easily programmed to copy files on my USB drive as soon as I plug it on my laptop, with not even needed to program it or manually copy/paste files. (in fact it can do this by scanning my USB's serial number and if a different USB is detected it does nothing).

Check it out, I am sure that this tool can be your best friend

thanks for the post!!

George



"Sometimes you put walls up not to keep people out, but to see who cares enough to break them down"

My Gear
Nikon D300 | Manfrotto 055XPROB Pro Tripod Legs Black with 804RC2 Pan Tilt Head | Nikon 35-70mm f/2.8D AF | Nikon 50mm f/1.8D AF | Nikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G AF VR | Nikon 70-300mm VR f/4.5-5.6G IF-ED | Nikon SB-600 Speedlight | Merkury Optics 0.45X Wide Angle & Macro Filter | Tokina 3X Zoom Filter | Tamrac 5374 Adventure 74 Digital Photo Backpack | ThinkTank Digital Holster 20 | Cactus V5 Tranceivers | Adorama Digital Remote Release

My Galleries
My Nikonians Gallery | My Flickr Gallery

Bluefin

Danville, US
432 posts

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#38. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 37

Bluefin Registered since 14th Nov 2006
Sun 12-Apr-09 09:24 PM

Very good thread. I am retired now but spent many years working on DR & BR solutions for Fortune 500 businesses.

Reading through all the posts the bulk of the discussion is focused on a technology failure. The other major threat is a physical disaster such as fire and there were a couple of references to offsite storage.

If I'm on an extended trip my personal workflow is I transfer the images to my laptop and burn a DVD. This way if I need to, I can format my CF cards and still have two physical copies. When I get home I transfer the DVDs to my desktop that also has a 750GB backup drive and then take the DVDs to my safe deposit box at the bank. I should burn two DVDs but I compensate for it by burning another DVD of the master files after I have worked on them in CS3.

If I'm just shooting day trips I transfer the images to my desktop and leave the images on my CF cards. I now have 3 physical copies: my CF cards, primary disk on my desktop and a copy on my backup drive. When my CF card is full I know I've hit 4 GB and burn a DVD and off to the bank. My images are vulnerable to a physical disaster between DVD burns.

50 gb disks in a Bluray format will have a really positive impact on my workflow. I will still have to burn 4gb DVDs just to make sure I'm safe between 50gb burns but offsite storage and management will be even simpler.

Anyway, great topic that needs to be discussed on a regular basis.....Mark

PeterMatthews

Sheffield, UK
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#39. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 38

PeterMatthews Registered since 19th Nov 2006
Fri 17-Apr-09 05:32 PM

Hi Folks

I'm new to Nikonians, and found this thread incredibly informative.

I'm not a pro and don't have a huge amount of money to spend on dedicated computer or backup systems. The approach I take uses a simple laptop, USB external hard drive and DVDs. I'd be really grateful for any comments on the robustness of this approach given my need for a low cost solution:-

File Formats
I always shoot NEF Raw + High Quality JPEG. The JPEG files remain completely unedited, the RAWs I work on in Capture NX. My reasoning for retaining an original, unedited copy in jpeg format is that I believe there exists a much higher long term risk of camera specific NEFs being unsupported by future software than exists for industry standard JPEGs. There seems little point in archiving if the file format isn't supported when you come to access the archive!

Initial Download
Initially my images are downloaded from Camera onto folders on my laptop hard drive.

Folder and File Renaming
Folder structure is 'yyyy-mm-dd-Description'
File names are changed globally in View NX to 'yyyy-mm-dd_hr-min-sec'.
The above ensures I can always search chronologically for a recognisable description of the shoot. The file naming ensures that the file names are always unique and if files are inadvertently moved from their folder they can be relocated by the yyyy-mm-dd naming.

Copyright Tagging
Copyright information is set in camera. Additional IPTC/Exif is added globally in View NX.

Initial Backup
Once re-named, the files are copied to the external USB hard drive to ensure the files exist in two locations before culling and editing takes place. Once copied, the files are deleted from the camera compact flash card.

Culling and Editing
Poor images are culled from the laptop by tagging and deleting in View NX or Capture NX (remember I already have a backup copy on the external hard drive in the event of me being overly critical!). NEFs for each shoot are edited in Capture NX on the laptop and converted to JPEGs or Tiffs which are placed in a subfolder called 'processed images' (the original in-camera jpegs remain unaltered as my long term compatibility backup).

Backing up Processed Images
Once I have finished editing a shoot I overwrite the changed NEF's on the usb external hard drive with those from the laptop and copy the relevant 'processed images' sub-folders from laptop to usb external hard drive.

Archiving
Once a month I backup new folders from the usb external hard drive onto DVDs and store these in my office (the usb drive is stored at home). I then delete the files from my laptop to free up space.

The process involves only a basic computer (my laptop), a relatively basic external hard drive and a bunch of DVDs. All files are uniquely named in a way that links them to their dated folders. At every point in the process I have two copies of the images (including the original in-camera jpegs).

As I said at the start, this is a basic low cost solution and I've not got a great deal of experience in computer backup systems. I'd be really grateful for comments that may make the process more robust.


Have Fun
Pete

Bluefin

Danville, US
432 posts

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#40. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 38

Bluefin Registered since 14th Nov 2006
Fri 17-Apr-09 06:13 PM

An update since my previous post.

Shortly after I wrote that post my computer informed me that I was running out of primary disk!

I went to Frys the next day to look for a solution and ended coming home with 2 x TBs of external storage! I was completely blown away by the technology.

I used to sell disk storage to a major bank, (I won't drop names but they are partial to red stagecoaches), for $5/MB back in 1994. If they had bought 2 x TBs from me in 1994, they would have had to cut a PO for $10,000,000! I whipped out my credit card at Frys and paid $198 for both TBs.

Ten years earlier I was selling 5 MB disk drives in word processors. I forget how much that option cost but it was probably very close to $100/MB.

Let see now....$100/MB x 2TBs = ?

My calculator just broke......It's showing EEEEEEEEEEEE!

Have a great weekend.....Mark

PAStime

Kingston, CA
2670 posts

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#41. "My tip and a question (great thread)" | In response to Reply # 0

PAStime Silver Member Nikonian since 10th Feb 2009
Thu 23-Apr-09 01:00 PM | edited Thu 23-Apr-09 01:01 PM by PAStime

Great thread. I spend a lot of time tweaking my home config. I have one tip and one question:

Tip: If you don't use off-site storage (as is likely the case for many of us), at least keep a hard drive hidden away at home. If someone breaks into your home and scoops up your PC and your portable drives, you may have significant loss of data. Even better is to hide a hard drive that is on-line via ethernet (e.g., NAS). That way you can back up to this physically hidden drive. And when I say hidden, I mean high on a shelf entirely out of sight in a workshop or something like that.

Question: Any advice on what kind of NAS device to buy that will mount on a Linux box as well as Windows? The Terastations seem primarly oriented to Windows but I do see CIFS and SMB in the spec. Will these talk to an Ubuntu box via Samba as well as a Windows box with XP? (I found Ximeta's NDAS unreliable and am looking for something better).

Cheers,
Peter

Pursuit

Kihei, US
2110 posts

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#42. "RE: My tip and a question (great thread)" | In response to Reply # 41

Pursuit Silver Member Nikonian since 04th Jan 2003
Fri 24-Apr-09 05:36 AM

It is my understanding that the Terasations are running Samba and should work with Linux systems. However, I haven't tried it with Linux.

I do have a WARNING though. I recently purchased two Terastation Quad 4TB servers and they have a bug. They corrupt the "last modified" timestamp of files. This causes backup programs that compare "last modified" times to come to incorrect conclusions as to which files have been backed up and which files still require backing up. I wrote a program to identify which bits in the timestamp fields are being corrupted and forwarded the details on to Buffalo Technology. Unfortunately, Buffalo Technology doesn't seem to be interested in fixing the problem. In fact, they didn't really seem to treat it as a very serious issue. So I would steer clear of the Terastation Quads until (or unless) they provide a fix. That is unfortunate because Frys.com has been running attractive prices on them.

Jim Kelly
There's no sense making a mistake unless you plan to learn from it.

PAStime

Kingston, CA
2670 posts

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#43. "RE: My tip and a question (great thread)" | In response to Reply # 42

PAStime Silver Member Nikonian since 10th Feb 2009
Fri 24-Apr-09 11:37 AM

Thanks Jim for the info and heads up on the file time stamp bug. That bug would mess up my method of syncing so that's good to know. Cheers, Peter

lighterside

Jerrabomberra, AU
27 posts

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#44. "RE: a comment and a question" | In response to Reply # 43

lighterside Silver Member Nikonian since 03rd Apr 2008
Tue 06-Oct-09 04:56 AM

A very informative post, which has provoked an interesting thread.

My hardware setup is somewhat similar to the posting author, except I use an eSATA attached 2 TB disk drive (running in RAID 1 mode) instead of NAS storage. I use a USB drive for periodic offsite storage. I currently have 1 hard drive in my PC but I'm considering installing a 2nd hard drive and configuring the two in RAID 1 mode so everything modified on my PC gets mirrored - in case my primary disk fails - which I have experienced recently.

I've been using Lightroom2 for viewing, modifying & storing all my NEF files since moving to a DSLR, and this thread has given me some fresh ideas on some better ways of tagging things - many thanks!

My Question: I have been grappling with how best to manage my other photo files . Import them into Lightroom & store in collections? - as I don't necessarily have dates for all images taken. To date I've been storing them all in various folders on my hard drive by either location shot or subject, but this is starting to get unwieldy.

Would love to hear how fellow Nikonians are tackling this issue.

Patience is a virtue!

Cerulean

La Paz, BO
283 posts

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#45. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 2

Cerulean Registered since 19th Oct 2009
Tue 03-Nov-09 01:57 PM

Hi:

I question starting your file name with a date. You can sort your window by date so this is redundant. Why not use something straight out of Nikon Transfer that increments each new upload?

Also, how do you handle the images generated after editing if you already backed up?

Migs


“ Your first 10000 photographs are your worst." – Henri Cartier-Bresson

sidewinder

US
737 posts

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#46. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 45

sidewinder Silver Member Nikonian since 05th Jan 2010
Sun 10-Jan-10 01:24 AM

Whatever storage options you select, I would avoid using RAID5. There are several issues with RAID5 that make it a poor choice.

If you need high availability, use RAID1. If you need high availability and speed, use RAID10.

Scott

Artrous

Covington, US
111 posts

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#47. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 0

Artrous Registered since 04th Jan 2010
Mon 15-Feb-10 07:20 AM

Lots of good info here!

For those of you who are:
1. Fanatical about back-ups
2. Overabundant in $$$$
3. In love w/ tinkering in your workstations

I present:

Get Veritas 9.1 back-up software
A Quantum SDLT 600 tape drive (sadly, they are SCSI, so you'll need a SCSI board in your desktop)
Finally, a bunch of Maxell Super DLT I 320 GB tapes (as in 22) and a few cleaning tapes

Back up 7 days (differential) (7 tapes)
Sundays do a complete back-up (there should be four/month)
Every month do a complete back-up (12 tapes)
At the end of the year, perform a yearly back-up (archived for 10 yrs)

My data schema looks like this: (I'll use Italy, as that is where I have the most shoots)

J:/Data/Archived Pictures/Places/Italy/Cagliari/RAW
J:/Data/Archived Pictures/Places/Italy/Cagliari II, III, IV, etc
J:/Data/Archived Pictures/Places/Italy/HDR

I find this lends itself very well to cataloging. The name of the city or country can be suffixed with a year or month/year desgination. If I need exact date, well, that's in the EXIF data.

Each picture is named as it is edited, so searching for something is relatively simple (I use Vista).

J:/ is my external Maxtor 1 TB drive. At the end of the year, I'll opt for a 8-12 TB NAS station from Seagate or Buffalo. (Seagate just bought Maxtor)

Data security is a big portion of my job -- there is nothing like hearing the grinding and gnashing of teeth when the customer finds his data is lost!

Brian Schletty
World Traveler

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

enidk

US
342 posts

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#48. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 47

enidk Registered since 01st Dec 2004
Thu 18-Feb-10 01:01 PM

I am totally confused beginner in matters of workflow and don't really understand all this wonderful information....I have a few thousand pictures on my MacBook Pro and I am running very low on space. Everything on my Mac is backed up on an external hard drive with Time Machine. What should I do?

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

lawelles

US
86 posts

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#49. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 48

lawelles Registered since 20th Nov 2010
Tue 30-Nov-10 12:20 AM

This is such a great thread. I'd been wondering for years how to handle storage of my digital photos. Seeing as I still have negatives safely stored from, oh, around 1970, it's a huge concern of mine. From a basket full of CDs to external hard drives - I've got quite the conglomeration.

Hopefully I can use some of this info to streamline my workflow and protect my work. I tend to 'delete, empty recycle bin' a little too quickly sometimes.

Lynn
lawelles.com and my Nikonians gallery.

Papa Smurf

Adair, US
57 posts

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#50. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 8

Papa Smurf Registered since 16th Dec 2010
Sat 21-Apr-12 04:26 PM | edited Sat 21-Apr-12 04:28 PM by Papa Smurf

>OK,

>On another note, does anyone know if there is s/w that will
>mirror one drive automatically (raid hardware not to be used)
>and then back up the second mirrored drive to a third drive?

Have you looked at Carbon Copy Cloner? I used it it mirror a failing HDD to a new HDD and it worked very well. The new HDD was a bootable disk after the cloning. It is shareware so the cost in minimal and it has a schedule function and an automatic function that you can customize to fit your workload.

Papa Smurf says that life is uncertain, eat dessert first!

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

Papa Smurf

Adair, US
57 posts

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#51. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 0

Papa Smurf Registered since 16th Dec 2010
Tue 24-Apr-12 05:49 PM

I have enjoyed reading all of your comments on the various filing and storage schemes used by working photographers, but what about us amateurs that take numerous photos of various categories of subjects over several weeks of time? I hardly ever take more than a few photos on any given day and it maybe weeks before I have time to upload and edit them. Most of the discussions so far are pretty much irrelevant to such circumstances. FWIW I generally use Nikon transfer's naming function and add key words to identify the different images of different subjects. To be honest it is cumbersome and I easily lose images when I cannot remember what keyword I assigned to an image that might have been taken last month or even last year, bummer.

The reason that I ask is that I am in the process of scanning and archiving slides from over fifty years of photography and I would like to make this as painless as possible. Does anyone have a foolproof method of cataloging images of various subjects taken over several days of several unrelated subjects?

Papa Smurf says that life is uncertain, eat dessert first!

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Cerulean

La Paz, BO
283 posts

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#52. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 51

Cerulean Registered since 19th Oct 2009
Tue 24-Apr-12 08:27 PM | edited Tue 24-Apr-12 08:30 PM by Cerulean

Hi Papa Smurf:

What has worked best for me is to use LightRoom. The previous version (3) is very cheap now as version 4 just came out. (Something like $75 on Amazon) and you can even rent it now from Adobe.

I have created folders named 2000, 2001, 2002...2012 and in each one I have the pics in folders named according to a given event. Makes it easy to find what I need. Add to that Tagging and Rating and you have it all.

I've done some workshops at SantaFe Workshops in NM and pretty much everyone uses Lightroom. One added advantage that many on this forum will support is that Lightroom has image development features that contain all of what Camera Raw can do and in many cases negates the need to further edit in Photoshop.

I really have to recommend LightRoom.

Migs


“ Your first 10000 photographs are your worst." – Henri Cartier-Bresson

Maura

Vancouver, CA
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#53. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 52

Maura Silver Member Nikonian since 11th Mar 2012
Wed 25-Apr-12 06:53 AM

I discovered Photo Mechanic on Nikonians. somewhere. I have only had it for a short time, but I really like it. I use it for sorting organizing renaming my images, attaching keywords. Then when they are a nicely sorted and labelled, I move to NX2 for editing. Photo Mechanic is fast, easy, intuitive.
You can try it before you buy it, and the cost is modest.
http://www.camerabits.com/site/PhotoMechanic.php

FM2 FA D200 V1
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M_Jackson

Jackson, US
704 posts

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#54. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 53

M_Jackson Silver Member Nikonian since 28th Oct 2005
Wed 12-Sep-12 04:56 AM | edited Wed 12-Sep-12 05:04 AM by M_Jackson

I read through most of this thread. It should be very informative.

About the only thing I'd contest is the file naming suggestions in the OP. As one of the other posters said, I'd recommend Adobe Lightroom version 4. They lowered the price on this version, making it very affordable.

I was hesitant to jump into something new like Lightroom—having built what I thought was a good system of filing. It was a bit like what the OP suggested. Lightroom is very flexible and allows each user taylor it to suit their needs, including working around, or with, an "old school" organization system.

LR will automatically rename the files in a variety of different methods (I use year-month-day-hour-second(and subsecond). LR will honor copyright info stored in the camera's setup and will add additional metadata on import including web site address, address, phone, etc. Within Lightroom, you can make folders, move files, batch rename, delete files and move entire folders from drive to drive with ease. They make it easy to add keywords during import, or at anytime afterwards. An entire catalog of images (including images stored in any of thousands of folders) can be viewed by date, name, which camera shot it, and by keywords. The sorting does not actually move the files, just displays them in any sort of search you apply.

Here's an example of the problem with an old school system: Let's say I took a shot of a moose in front of the Grand Teton range. Old school forces you to put the photo in a folder. If you came to the Tetons on vacation, you might just leave all of the trip photos in a GTNP folder. But, if you come here five years in a row, finding the specific image gets tougher. On another filing system, you might put the image with the moose in a Moose folder, but what happens if the moose is secondary part of the bigger landscape image in front of the Tetons? With LR, assuming you added keywords, you can find all moose in your master catalog, or all moose at the Tetons, or all moose not at the Tetons. How about only moose shot with a 70-200 and in 2011? Or all Tetons shots taken in any year? Much of the heavy lifting is done automatically since LR reads and records the information in the shooting data. No need to manually enter the date, camera, lens, and so forth. You can add presets to apply all kinds of data entry and adjustments as images are imported into LR.

As always, if you are happy with your system, "nevermind"! But adopting a DAM (Data Asset Management) system sooner than later will make life so much easier in the long run.

Lastly, LR has essentiall three parts. The data asset management (Library) part is so powerful. The Develop part of the program seems to get the most press, as it is making the need to go to Photoshop less and less necessary. The rest of the program is for printing, slide shows, print, web, book making, and so forth.

M. Jackson
Jackson Hole, WY

Blog: www.bestofthetetons.com
Web Site: www.tetonimages.com

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GeorgCantor

Potomac, US
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#55. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 39

GeorgCantor Registered since 09th Dec 2012
Thu 27-Dec-12 08:55 PM

I don't quite understand "Once I have finished editing, I overwrite the changed NEF's on the USB external hard drive with those from the laptop, and copy the relevant processed image sub-folders from laptop to USB external hard drive."

Do you mean that you destroy fghte original (unproced) copies of the NEF files that you placed on the exernal hard drive, and "replace" them with the editied versions in the "processed" folders?

Thank you.

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drmanubmengi

Chandigarh, IN
417 posts

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#56. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 0

drmanubmengi Silver Member Nikonian since 14th May 2012
Wed 18-Feb-15 05:18 PM

Very informative thread.
My question is little different and the moderators are free to move my post to the relevant section.

What should be the format i which you / one should store the photos?
I use LR4 & therein the files are converted to .dng format.
Now my question is whether it is the right thing to do or should i stop it & start storing the photos in .nef format?


Dr. Manu Mengi
Loves Photography & Nikon

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Cerulean

La Paz, BO
283 posts

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#57. "RE: A Sample Workflow Hardware Configuration" | In response to Reply # 56

Cerulean Registered since 19th Oct 2009
Wed 18-Feb-15 05:35 PM

Hi Manu:

Yes, use dng. It is a format which looses no information.

Migs


“ Your first 10000 photographs are your worst." – Henri Cartier-Bresson

G