A basic guide to ensuring your images are secure, backed up, and easily found.
1. Use your computer’s own folder system to store your uploaded or scanned photos.
Create a main folder called Photos, then keep all your photos within that folder.
For each new group of photos, create a folder named in the format of year-month-day-description – for example: 2019-06-27-North coast holiday.
At the end of each year, move all the folders from that year into a single folder called, for example: 2019.
2. Delete your unwanted photos.
3. Photo organise/storage software from companies like Adobe, Apple, Google, and Microsoft can be useful, but be aware that these companies have terms, conditions, and software itself that can change at short notice in a way that’s unsuitable for you.
We recommend you avoid relying on any one type of photo organise/storage software.
4. Backup regularly to an external drive stored in a separate location to your computer.
Note: the average lifespan of external drives is about 6 years.
5. Backup regularly to a cloud location, which can also be useful to easily access your photos on mobile devices like phone and tablets. Google Photos, iCloud, and Microsoft OneDrive are just a few examples of companies that offer cloud storage services for photos.
Note: most cloud storage services charge monthly or annual fees.
6. Regularly print your favourite photos.
Keep a separate folder on your computer for all the photos you have printed, so if the prints are damaged or lost they can be easily re-printed.
7. To preserve old, fading, or damaged photos, either use a quality scanner to make a digital copy, or use a good camera to take a photo of the old photo.
Most photo editing software programs include tools to repair damaged photos.
And most camera/print specialist stores offer professional photo restore/repair services.