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How do you backup large multitrack files?


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Assuming you don't have a DVD-R... With all this processing power (and that on a feeble PIII 600) my multitrack projects are routinely surpassing 650 MB. 24-bit audio will get there in a might hurry. I suppose you can split the tracks onto two or more CDs and then re-assemble and realign. That sounds like a PIA. Lately, I've been backing up by keeping a current copy of the project on each of my two drives, and then doing occasional CD backups with as few submixes as possible to get the file down to 650. It always entails some difficult decisions: "what I am *least* likely to want to edit or re-process? How do you do it?
Check out the Sweet Clementines CD at bandcamp
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I guess a lot of it has to do with the software your using, but with Vegas for example you have the option to export each track to it's own wave file. This way, you can span the wave files over multiple CD's. Otherwise, when working with files larger than 650 MB you might have to use a program like winrar to break the file up into smaller chunks.
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I'm checking out backup utilities. Many of them will let you save groups of files, which is supposed to "painlessly" let you save across multiple CDs, and it's a lot cheaper than any other backup option till DVD-R is as affordable as CD-r.
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well, i'm afraid anyone using hard drives for long term backup purposes will be pretty unhappy in only a few years when they go to restore the data...and tht's under good storage conditions. try dropping a hd only a foot and see if it still works, or accidentally setting it by a speaker etcetc...sure, i've booted up computers and drives over 10 years old and lo and behold the damn things work, but the batting averages for that are maybe .500. the whole point of archiving is [b]long[/b] term storage. to me it's totally cool when you throw a 40 year old tape on a machine and get right back inside what's on there. i'd hazard a guess that the ability to read a 40 year old CD/??? in the future will be no problem as well. i guess time will tell if these optical disc formats have real long term data integrity, but they certainly have a better chance than all the possible things that can fail in a hd, or in a linear tape cartridge as well for that matter. but back to the original post...i wish i knew PC audio, but doesn't your app put all related audio files in a particular folder, such that even if you have to restore from multiple CD's, all you'd have to do is restore them to the same audio file folder and poof there you go? why wouldn't your app know where the files belong in the session anymore?
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I second the exabyte (or other quality tape back-up) reccomendation. It's best to back up to a medium designed for backup. CDRs are convenient and cheap, but not reliable for long term storage. I've already run into problems recovering things from CDRs that are less than 3 years old. Hard drives are the second best bet. Even if the drive mechanism itself fails, the data can almost always be recovered.
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Hi, It's important to not put all of your eggs into one basket IMHO. Tapes can go bad, hard drives can go bad, CDR's can go bad, etc. However, the odds of two separate media formats going bad at exactly the same time is doubtful and would be a rare situation. Myself, I'm using CDR. I've had some CDR's which have been around for about 5 years now without a problem. Do I feel safe? Well, sorta because my important files are stored on 3 separate CDR's, one of them off-site. All of my CD's are stored in a dark location free from humidity. However, if I had the extra cash, I'd go with a reliable tape backup system as well as the CDR. I would use the CD's for quick retrieval and the tapes as the backup to that. Backing up to CD's is a pain though with their relatively small size (in comparison to today's drive sizes) as some projects can cover more than one CD. fv
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I do split up the sound files onto different CD-Rs or CD-RWs if necessary. It's not that bad... I just label it "Song Title 36 (the song revision #), Disc 1/2" or something like that. I've got about seven CD-RWs I keep in a soft CD wallet that I use for temp nightly backups. I don't bother writing on the CD-RW, as that would get messy over time -- I just get a Post-It (I keep a bunch in the back of the CD wallet) and stick it on the front of the CD-RW. I have a spool of CD-Rs for "sessions" (i.e. when a song has reached a particular milestone and I want to archive it just in case if I want to go back to that point). All of the "sessions" CD-Rs are numbered in chronological order. Lastly, when a new song is done, everything gets backed up on the "sessions" CD-R as well as on an extra set of CD-Rs which I keep offsite. And occasionally I make CD-RWs of the stuff in progress and keep it offsite as well. I imagine what I wrote above sounds like a lot of work, but it really isn't. Usually at the end of a session (usually late at night), it's not a big deal to start the backup as a way to unwind/de-compress before going to sleep.
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Radar Ranch -- that's a good idea. I could just backup my Cakewalk Wavedata folder every so often....and keep track of every Cakewalk project that's on my drive at the time of the back up. Then to restore one project, I'd probably have to load the entire Wavedata folder, open the project in question, save it as a .bun files, and delete the old wavedata folder again. Actually, that's not so bad. Thanks. [quote]Originally posted by Rader Ranch: [b] but back to the original post...i wish i knew PC audio, but doesn't your app put all related audio files in a particular folder, such that even if you have to restore from multiple CD's, all you'd have to do is restore them to the same audio file folder and poof there you go? why wouldn't your app know where the files belong in the session anymore?[/b][/quote]
Check out the Sweet Clementines CD at bandcamp
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I can't use CD-R for backup of multitrack material. They are simply too small... 24 trks @ 24 bits takes a lot of space. Our Exabyte drive uses inexpensive media, a quality 7 GB tape is less than $8 - and we charge our clients $20 for each tape to cover our expenses for hardware investments and labour. The drive was very expensive but pays for itself. /Mats

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[quote]Originally posted by mats.olsson@rockfile.se: [b]...Our Exabyte drive uses inexpensive media, a quality 7 GB tape is less than $8 - and we charge our clients $20 for each tape to cover our expenses for hardware investments and labour. The drive was very expensive but pays for itself.[/b][/quote] At this point in time though...wouldn't DVD be a more "versatile" choice to consider?

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  • 4 weeks later...
I agree there. i have used Exabyte for a number of years with a SADiE system and have recently aquired a RADAR with DVD-RAM. The discs are about five times the price of an Exabyte tape but the Exabyte drive is three times the price of the DVD drive. price wise it depends how much media you're going to be using but DVD prices are bound to drop over the next couple of years and the speed of DVD-Ram is great for a pro. I'm backing up 45 minutes worth of 24 bit 24 track (5-6Gb) in around 70 minutes
It's not a successful climb unless you enjoy the journey
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I don't know what software you are using but with Cubase and Nuendo the audio files are stored in a folder along with the song file or project file. There is no reason why you can't copy up to 650MB of data onto one CDRW and do the same for as many CDRW's as it takes to backup a project. You just have to copy the files bace to a folder again when you want to restore the song. The only thing you must do with this method is remove the "Read only" attribute from the files after restoring. I've used this method without problems.

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Osaka, Japan

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Jazz Drive----1 Gig disks Tape Drive----2.75(?) disks

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[quote]god, i hate computers... -d. gauss[quote] he he! To know them is to love them. I would have spent several hundred thousand dollars 20 years ago to be able to do what I can do with a $3,000 PC and $2,000 worth of software. By the way when you back up a DAW project to a CDRW the backup is identical to the original and the B/U media is about $1.00. Compare that to a 24 track analog backup with a second generation of noise added and about $200.00 for the media. Oh well. :p

Mac Bowne

G-Clef Acoustics Ltd.

Osaka, Japan

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