If you haven’t experienced the nightmare scenario of catastrophic hard drive failure before a gig or even worse, equipment theft, then count yourself lucky. And while you’re counting, you can also count on disaster striking eventually. The problem of data loss through theft or hard drive failure is likely to happen eventually and is compounded if you’re on the road and away from whatever back-up drive you may (and should) have at home.
One way to be prepared is to store all of your critical digital assests for DJing — software applications and their license/authorization numbers, digital music files, Stripes folders, settings and MIDI mappings files, etc. — using an online file storage service that will let you download your precious data from anywhere you can access the Internet. Read on for a breakdown of some free online storage services where you can backup your files and gain some peace of mind.
YOU GOT FILE SERVED
There are dozens of sites that offer some level of free online file storage. Most of them have starter memberships that are free of charge and then higher-level memberships with better features that cost a monthly or yearly fee. Often, the free service seems good enough, but there may be restrictions on the maximum file size, the amount you can download per day or other rules that might prohibit a smooth recovery of your backup data.
We tried out three online file storage services — FileFactory, ADrive and MediaFire — compared their attributes and user experiences and then made some judgments and suggestions on how you might proceed to backup your digital DJ data.
Free service: MediaFire
MediaFire’s free service gives you unlimited storage capacity; no limits to the number or transfer speed of your uploads or downloads; and the most user-friendly online interface and file transfer tool, which helps make up for MediaFire’s lack of FTP support.
FileFactory Basic scored the lowest on usability for a free service because it does not support FTP and the online upload feature only lets you upload 25 files at a time, compared to ADrive Basic’s 1,000 at a time.
While MediaFire Pro claims to give you unlimited file storage capacity and is less expensive, FileFactory Premium steals the show for one essential reason; it’s 1 TB limit on file size means that you could clone your hard drive using something like Bombich Carbon Copy Cloner for Macs or DriveImage XML for Windows and use FTP to upload the cloned disk image to FileFactory. In an emergency, you could then download that disk image to a hard drive and have a bootable copy of your old computer should it fizzle out or get stolen. No other file storage service that we found advertised maximum file size higher than 10 GB.
Whether you opt for a free service just to store your most essential music or go for the gusto and get a deluxe package that will let you store a back-up disk image of your entire hard drive, we highly recommend doing something to prepare yourself for the nightmare digital DJ scenario of data loss.Related