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Forums Apple Final Cut Pro X organization and backups – over kill?

  • organization and backups – over kill?

  • Craig Alan

    November 21, 2017 at 4:18 pm

    I use sparse bundles for each project. The bundle holds all components of a project.
    I create folders for media files, render files, FCP backups, media card copies and the library.
    The library does not contain any of the other components.
    If I work on it at a different location,
    I clone the sparse bundle to a portable drive and bring that with me. I do not usually collaborate with anyone in post, so that’s not a need. The sparse bundles are on a couple of raid 5 – (4 x 6TB drives).
    On the raids, I have 3 folders each. I put as many sparse bundles in each folder that will max out at 80% of 6TB (4.8 TB).
    For back-ups, I use 6TB single naked drives, a thunderbolt dock, and CCC to clone each folder in the raids to these backups drives. The drives are labeled and in a stackable set of drive containers B&H # NEHDSTORA35K .

    In the future, I would like to automate this work flow. I’d like to daisy chain my thunderbolt media raids and then back them up automatically on a large backup system every night or in the background. But my current single drives using a thunderbolt dock is the least expensive way I know. CCC does a good incremental and fast backup.

    I suppose that I could save some money by just backing up the media cards and the FCP X backup files.

    For some reason I feel more secure doing complete backups as above.

    Am I being too cautious? Are the FCP X backups and original media card copies bullet proof?
    Aside from needing an offsite or cloud backup. I get that.

    Imacs (i7); Canon 5D Mark III/70D, Panasonic HPX250P, FCP X 10.3, teach video production in L.A.

  • Noah Kadner

    November 21, 2017 at 5:36 pm
  • John Rofrano

    November 21, 2017 at 6:03 pm

    [Craig Alan] “Am I being too cautious? Are the FCP X backups and original media card copies bullet proof? “

    I don’t think you’re being too cautious because nothing is bullet proof and the spinning hard drive platter is your worst enemy. I do the same thing as you, in fact… I’m worse. ????

    I have three sets of storage: Camera Card Archives, Project Archives, and RAID 5 for work in progress. Here is how I use them:

    I keep a collection of 1TB – 2TB USB 3.0 drives that are labeled: Camera Card Archive #1,2,3, etc. After a shoot, plug in one of the drives, place my camera card in the reader, open FCP X and use Import | Create Archive to create a camera card archive of my card to the external 1TB USB drive. Then I pop out the media and manually copy the archive I just made from the USB drive to a camera card archive folder on my RAID 5. So now I have two copies of my original footage, one on a single drive and one on a RAID 5 just in case. I don’t reformat the camera card until the second copy is completed.

    When I’m ready to edit, I create an FCPX Library on my RAID 5 and import the footage from the camera card archive into the Library. This keeps everything I’m editing in the Library for easy backup. I also have a second set of single 1TB – 2TB USB 3.0 drives labeled: Project Archive #1,2,3, etc. that I copy the Library to at the end of the day (or end of an editing session). This gives me two copies of my work in process.

    Using that three location system, I always have two copies of the original footage and my project with media at all times. As the RAID 5 gets full, I can delete older camera card archives because I have the off-line backup on the Camera Card Archive drives and the footage is also in the project Libraries. For really old projects I will delete the Libraries from my RAID 5 knowing that I have the off-line backup on the Project Archive drive should I need to go back to them.

    You can never have too many backups but I would definitely continue to create incremental backups of your RAID to single drives because disks will fail. It’s not a question of if… but when. A RAID is not a backup in and of itself. It is a technology for high availability when a failure happens but you need to be prepared with a backup in case you lose more than one drive or a second drive fails during a rebuild (which is extremely punishing on drives).


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