How do I: Back up photos like a pro?


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The Independent Tech

In a digital world, one in which we very rarely produce physical copies of our photos, storing, filing and backing up our images is vital. But with hundreds of programmes and multitudes of media (from Facebook to Flickr) able to do these jobs, what are the best and most efficient ways to sort out your albums?

Lynn Chambers runs the photography agency Seeephoto ( She recommends Google's free downloadable service, Picasa, due to its easy integration with the search giant's ever-popular Gmail service. "The web albums section really helps users quickly tweak and share their photo libraries with friends and family online," says Chambers.

Chambers also recommends that serious snappers shell out $25 (about £15) on a Flickr Pro account that "will allow them to upgrade Flickr's storage limits – but you can still enjoy flickr's best features, such as web-editing, tagging and keywording on the free version".

For those keen to keep their images away from the shared world of the cloud, Chambers suggests that backing them up on an external hard drive is a worthwhile idea – and much easier to pick up and run with if you're leaving the proverbial burning house: "You can purchase a 750GB portable drive easily for less than £150. But for those who travel a lot and need access to images remotely, I'd recommend web file hosting service Dropbox. Its free service provides 2GB of free online storage or users who refer Dropbox to others can gain up to 8GB of additional free storage. There is also a pro plan of up to 100GB for $19.99 per month for those wanting more storage access."

As for arranging – that's up to the individual. Chambers sorts her shots by person, but if an amateur user is diligent enough upon transferring pictures from a memory to the desktop they can use tagging programmes (such as Picasa) to make sure that dates, specific events and the people within the picture are all easily-searchable.