Salll93
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Hi All,

Looking on twitter and forums online, loads of people have advised buying a portable hard drive to back up all the data collected during a PhD.

I am absolutely oblivious in regards to technology.

My PhD will involve ALOT of microscopic photographs.

Anyone recommend any particular brand? Size 1TB? 2? 4?

Thank you
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PhoenixFortune
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(Original post by Salll93)
Hi All,

Looking on twitter and forums online, loads of people have advised buying a portable hard drive to back up all the data collected during a PhD.

I am absolutely oblivious in regards to technology.

My PhD will involve ALOT of microscopic photographs.

Anyone recommend any particular brand? Size 1TB? 2? 4?

Thank you
As long as it's not the only location for backing up data (many people say if it's not saved in 3 independent locations, it's not saved at all), then a portable hard drive is a good option.

I currently use Seagate hard drives. As to the size you'll need, that will depend on how much space each photograph takes up (i.e. how many KB/MB), and how you want to organise your data (e.g. having one hard drive for each type of photograph etc.). You'd certainly be looking at at least 2TB though I'd imagine.
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Salll93
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(Original post by PhoenixFortune)
As long as it's not the only location for backing up data (many people say if it's not saved in 3 independent locations, it's not saved at all), then a portable hard drive is a good option.

I currently use Seagate hard drives. As to the size you'll need, that will depend on how much space each photograph takes up (i.e. how many KB/MB), and how you want to organise your data (e.g. having one hard drive for each type of photograph etc.). You'd certainly be looking at at least 2TB though I'd imagine.
Thank you!!
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999tigger
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(Original post by Salll93)
Hi All,

Looking on twitter and forums online, loads of people have advised buying a portable hard drive to back up all the data collected during a PhD.

I am absolutely oblivious in regards to technology.

My PhD will involve ALOT of microscopic photographs.

Anyone recommend any particular brand? Size 1TB? 2? 4?

Thank you
1. As said above 3 different copies in 3 different places.
2. Make sure one of them is online, so if you are burgled or theres a fire you have a spare.
3, Backup on a regular basis, so you always have an up to date copy to return to.
4. That data becomes equal to years worth of work. Irreplaceable.
5. Think of ways and places to save.

i) HDD on laptop.[ This should not be your only means of saving, just the work in progress one.
ii) Copy on cloud.- Free or paid. https://www.techradar.com/uk/news/th...-cloud-storage
iii) Intermediate data on pen drive.- 16-128GB USB 3- vulnerable to being misplaced. Get a reliable brand like Sandisk, although USB can fail.£6-£16.
iv) archived data on burnt dvd rom.- for archiving or temp backup then cheap- old tech, but as a backup £1 or less for 4GB data.
v0 Portable SSD. Fast and reliable but expensive. Prices have dropped massively in last year 50-75%. No moving parts
https://www.amazon.co.uk/s?k=samsung...f=nb_sb_noss_2
Also more rugged i.e survive a fall.
Samsung T5 500gn £95 1TB £135 or you can just get your own caddy for £7 amd put your own ssd in from 240gb £40 500GB £60 1 TB £110.
vi) External HDD- Mechanical drive which means slow and moving parts make less reliable. That said for archiving its fine as you only want it to store the data. 2.5" drive = slower, but portable and dont need power supply 3.5" bigger not really portable but a bit faster.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/s?k=2tb+ext...nb_sb_ss_i_3_3
Probably 23.5" unless its just going to stay at home. £60-90 for 2TB.
vii) Also see what storage space you will get on your Unis network.

Ways to lose data.
i) Physical loss/ mislaid.
ii) Robbed/ theft/ burgled or fire.
iii) Virus.
iv) Mechanical failure.
v) Accident, spill drink etc, power outage.

https://library.bath.ac.uk/research-...a/data-storage
If you have a big hdd or an expensive one you need to withstand it being stolen, forgotten or just dying.
Dont just get the cheapest as some companies such as WD will oiffer better versions with more security or reliability features.
As a lot of information you will have wont need to be accessed all at once?

Long term storage external hard drive, dvd, cloud.

Short term a hdd but my preference would be an ssd, knowing you should back that up every day other day/ week. You are trying to avoid all eggs in one basked. A portable HDD is probably fine, but remember its years worth of work and irreplaceable.

Hope that gives you an idea.

https://www2.le.ac.uk/services/resea...p-data/storage
https://www.bath.ac.uk/guides/decidi...-in-the-cloud/
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rcmotorboy
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Just to note... be careful when handling hard drives. Hitting and knocking around your hard drive can break your hard drive and lock you out from access your hard earned data and can be unrecoverable. I did the same with putting my work on DVDs and backing those up time and time again. Even going to lengths finding out how long hard drives or discs last. Thankfully for decades.

Like the list, 999tigger had mentioned.
Last edited by rcmotorboy; 1 month ago
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Notoriety
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I would think having them on the cloud would make your life a lot easier. You will get 1tb from your uni by default.
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Salll93
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(Original post by 999tigger)
1. As said above 3 different copies in 3 different places.
2. Make sure one of them is online, so if you are burgled or theres a fire you have a spare.
3, Backup on a regular basis, so you always have an up to date copy to return to.
4. That data becomes equal to years worth of work. Irreplaceable.
5. Think of ways and places to save.

i) HDD on laptop.[ This should not be your only means of saving, just the work in progress one.
ii) Copy on cloud.- Free or paid. https://www.techradar.com/uk/news/th...-cloud-storage
iii) Intermediate data on pen drive.- 16-128GB USB 3- vulnerable to being misplaced. Get a reliable brand like Sandisk, although USB can fail.£6-£16.
iv) archived data on burnt dvd rom.- for archiving or temp backup then cheap- old tech, but as a backup £1 or less for 4GB data.
v0 Portable SSD. Fast and reliable but expensive. Prices have dropped massively in last year 50-75%. No moving parts
https://www.amazon.co.uk/s?k=samsung...f=nb_sb_noss_2
Also more rugged i.e survive a fall.
Samsung T5 500gn £95 1TB £135 or you can just get your own caddy for £7 amd put your own ssd in from 240gb £40 500GB £60 1 TB £110.
vi) External HDD- Mechanical drive which means slow and moving parts make less reliable. That said for archiving its fine as you only want it to store the data. 2.5" drive = slower, but portable and dont need power supply 3.5" bigger not really portable but a bit faster.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/s?k=2tb+ext...nb_sb_ss_i_3_3
Probably 23.5" unless its just going to stay at home. £60-90 for 2TB.
vii) Also see what storage space you will get on your Unis network.

Ways to lose data.
i) Physical loss/ mislaid.
ii) Robbed/ theft/ burgled or fire.
iii) Virus.
iv) Mechanical failure.
v) Accident, spill drink etc, power outage.

https://library.bath.ac.uk/research-...a/data-storage
If you have a big hdd or an expensive one you need to withstand it being stolen, forgotten or just dying.
Dont just get the cheapest as some companies such as WD will oiffer better versions with more security or reliability features.
As a lot of information you will have wont need to be accessed all at once?

Long term storage external hard drive, dvd, cloud.

Short term a hdd but my preference would be an ssd, knowing you should back that up every day other day/ week. You are trying to avoid all eggs in one basked. A portable HDD is probably fine, but remember its years worth of work and irreplaceable.

Hope that gives you an idea.

https://www2.le.ac.uk/services/resea...p-data/storage
https://www.bath.ac.uk/guides/decidi...-in-the-cloud/
(Original post by rcmotorboy)
Just to note... be careful when handling hard drives. Hitting and knocking around your hard drive can break your hard drive and lock you out from access your hard earned data and can be unrecoverable. I did the same with putting my work on DVDs and backing those up time and time again. Even going to lengths finding out how long hard drives or discs last. Thankfully for decades.

Like the list, 999tigger had mentioned.
I’m having massive anxiety over the thought of losing stuff. Luckily I have been able to get through my masters with a USB stick, saving on uni files and when I’m really worried emailing it to my personal account.

I saw a hard drive on amazon - LaCie which is shock/drop resistant. But only 1TB.

I probably need to invest in a decent USB stick too, haven’t a clue how good my current one is.
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999tigger
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(Original post by Salll93)
I’m having massive anxiety over the thought of losing stuff. Luckily I have been able to get through my masters with a USB stick, saving on uni files and when I’m really worried emailing it to my personal account.

I saw a hard drive on amazon - LaCie which is shock/drop resistant. But only 1TB.

I probably need to invest in a decent USB stick too, haven’t a clue how good my current one is.
If you have read my post above then from a risk management point of view you need to be saving in multiple locations and sources.
Pen drives die or thy get lost damaged stolen or forgotten.

Cloud is good, but all methods have pros and cons.
You may not always have internet access. You may only have a slow connection etc.
The consequences of losing work is disastrous hence you need to take storage seriously .
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XOR_
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This is a good idea tbh think I need an external :lol:
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stabilo20619
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You should really think about google drive/one drive/cloud services to back up your PhD data. Any physical method (hardrive/USB) will have an increased risk compared to virtual storage.
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mnot
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(Original post by Salll93)
Hi All,

Looking on twitter and forums online, loads of people have advised buying a portable hard drive to back up all the data collected during a PhD.

I am absolutely oblivious in regards to technology.

My PhD will involve ALOT of microscopic photographs.

Anyone recommend any particular brand? Size 1TB? 2? 4?

Thank you
Im curious about this and am planning some hard storage for my PhD, but I think Unis normally have set suppliers and will give these to you for free (at least that's what my supervisor told me is standard practice at most Unis).

But im planning cloud storage as my main backup, i currently use icloud-drive, onedrive & mega and these all work very well imo.
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mnot
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I also agree with 999tigger

portable SSD's are a better option. Flash storage is so cheap nowadays, I recently bought a 256gb micro-SD for £20ish off an amazon lightning deal, but they regularly have offers on external-SSDs capable of storage a couple TB's.

I just think SSD's are so much more reliable its worth paying a little more for one of these
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Salll93
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(Original post by stabilo20619)
You should really think about google drive/one drive/cloud services to back up your PhD data. Any physical method (hardrive/USB) will have an increased risk compared to virtual storage.
So should I bother with any physical method? Or just use google drive, cloud etc.
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PhoenixFortune
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(Original post by Salll93)
So should I bother with any physical method? Or just use google drive, cloud etc.
I'd say use as many methods as you can in combination.
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stabilo20619
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This is a good point. I always make sure I have 3-4 copies of any document/data. 1: laptop, 2: USB, 3: google drive 4: uni account.

(Original post by PhoenixFortune)
I'd say use as many methods as you can in combination.
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khunter123444
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You can also back up your data to the cloud such as OneDrive. I currently use that along with all my data stored on my PC, backed up to another drive inside the PC and finally on an external portable HDD (1tb)
Last edited by khunter123444; 1 month ago
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Helloworld_95
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A lot of universities will have access to Pure where you're supposed to put your data if you're research council funded (in practice a lot of people don't bother).

I'd also recommend getting your university to buy you a pretty big hard drive (or a OneDrive/Google Drive subscription if they're already using outlook/gmail) as they are supposed to help you store all of your data.
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Secretariat123
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I use OneDrive, as long as you have a good password you will be fine...
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jddddd
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Western Digital
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Anndee
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Having just submitted, I am glad to report that, during my entire 3 years' project, I never suffered data loss - but I was meticulous about backups, both on an external hard drive and in the cloud. I once lost an essay shortly before a deadline when I was an undergrad because I spilled something on my laptop and had no backup. Ever since, I tried to make sure this could never happen again.
One thing you need to consider is what type of data you're working with, whether there is anything sensitive in there (e.g. interview participants' personal data or patient data, depending on your field) - you need to tell in your ethics approval how and where you're going to store the data and how you're going to protect them. Luckily, in my field, working with archaeological and historical data, that was never an issue, but for others it could be that there are limitations to where data are permitted to be backed up.
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