So, I know I've mentioned in my last few emails about Forever Permanent Storage that I've been developing a new system for working with Historian and my Permanent Storage account.

In the past month, I've helped three different people move their Historian vaults and Artisan content from one computer to another.  It's awesome that there are ways to easily do that, but it's time consuming.  And it also assumes that the source computer is still in good enough shape to transfer the files.

Just a few weeks ago, I had to install a new hard drive in my own laptop because the old one failed out of the blue one morning.  The computer did not give me any warning, it just suddenly slowed down so much that I couldn't do anything.  I even tried to transfer my Historian vault to an external drive, and after 42 hours, I gave up.  (Mostly because I knew I had an up-to-date shadow copy.  If you are using Historian, you MUST keep your shadow copy current.  It will save your photos!)

This has all really solidified my belief that relying on Historian to organize and store ALL of my photos is not the ideal solution for me.  I have used this system and multiple backup drives for years, but this ALONE is not the best solution anymore.

After using my Forever Permanent Storage account for nearly a year, and then evaluating the size of my vaults and the number of photos I have, I'm switching to a two-tiered approach to my photo management.

First, I use Historian to collect all of my photos.  I work through sorting them at this point, giving the better photos a star rating of 3 or more.  I delete the ones that are blurry or will never be used, and I run the facial recognition as the easiest way to tag the people I want to search for.

And of course, as stated above, I make sure that the shadow copy is updated after I do these things.

My plan is to keep things cleaned up and organized in Historian until I've used the photos I need for the projects pertaining to that year.  Then, I will move them from my “current” vault to more of a storage vault that I can access as needed on an external drive. But removing the ones I no longer need for current projects will make my current vault load faster.

The second tier is my Forever Permanent Storage account. I have watched for specials on permanent storage over the last year or so, and I add storage as I can.  At this point, I have been uploading the better photos from my Historian vault (those ones that I marked with 3 stars or more), and I am learning to curate them in my Forever account.  I love how free this makes me feel.  After so many operating system failures and hard drive crashes over the years, I was not worried one single bit when my hard drive failed last week.  I can just pick up my phone, open my Forever app, and all of my pictures are at my fingertips. I can do the same thing from my iPad (which substituted for a computer for a few days). I can do that from anywhere.  I can even create quick Forever Projects from there when I don't have access to my Artisan software.

The thing I've loved the most is how I don't “forget” to get photos from my phone anymore. The Forever app uploads the photos from my phone when I connect to wifi, so they are automatically saved.  (Yes, I do have to go in and delete the pictures of car parts and polo shirts that I snap at the store to send to my husband, and the photos of error messages I take when my computer acts up.  But that's super easy to do.)

Even after upgrading myself to a solid state drive when my hard drive failed, it still takes some time to load my 29,000 photo vault.  I'm finding myself becoming less patient with load time now because everything else loads so fast.  So you may hear me talk more and more about using the Permanent Storage for all of my storage needs pretty soon, because I see myself thinking more that way all the time.

Have you tried Forever's Permanent Storage yet?

Until the next time, Enjoy!

~ Deb