Migration or transfer of photos

Gateway Desktop with amd phenom ii x4 qu...
July 18, 2010 at 03:24:44
Specs: Windows 7 Home Premium, Gateway DX 4300/2.6 gig processor/8 GB RAM
I would appreciate some suggestions. I format my hard drive more than most people. Usually every six months. I have four computers. 2 with Win XP, and 2 with Win 7. I do lots of photography and photoshop with Photoshop CS8 entended. I have massive files of photos. When I want to format I have to copy them to dvd disks and it takes forever. I am constantly editing old and new photos and haven't figured out a good way to keep track of which particular folders have photos that I have edited, and besides, I want all the good edits to be run on slideshow screensavers. Isn't there a software program (or thousands of them, that's usually the problem) that I can use that would enable me to connect two computers with a cable (usb?) so I can just click on a folder (some are folders that have photos in them totaling over 30 gb) and copy it to another computer?


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July 18, 2010 at 04:19:46
Why don't you use an external drive or two (or more) - look up the term 'NAS' as I think it would suit your needs admirably. Keep your originals on one, updated weekly, and use a second for your modified creations and a further drive as a total backup.. Keep as little as possible on your main PC except work in progress.

Is there any particular reason you have to format so often?

"I've always been mad, I know I've been mad, like the most of us..."

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July 18, 2010 at 15:08:54
If these files are important to you, which I assume is the case, then you should always have at least two copies of them.

You should consider networking your computers. What hardware, if any do you use currently to connect to the internet?

BTW, there is no need to format every six months. There are plenty of things you can do to keep your drives in tip top shape.

First thing is to use multiple partitions to keep your OS on one, your programs on another, files on a third and so on. When imaging with that type of setup you don't need to re-install items on the other partitions in order to access them.

Look into a file comparison program called Beyond compare. See link below.


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July 19, 2010 at 01:57:31
You are correct, of course, about clean installing the operating system. There are many things to keep the computer running in tip top shape. I just (for many reasons) use format and re-install as a "cure all" when all else fails. I've been on this site since around 1999, and have learned about the spyware software, and all the other normal things to try to fix my computer problems.

Time is a factor. I have too many hobbies, and not enough time to learn partitions (I'm sure it's all easy to you), etc. I spend most of my time learning photoshop, a very time consuming hobby, with a high learning curve. CS8 Extended is amazing and I am totally addicted to it.

Right now my network probably IS my problem. 2 months ago I put in Netgear. I have comcast broadband. My main computer, this one, found netgear with no problem, my laptop found it, and my other "main" computer (just like this gateway except it's a HP) was to be the one I kept tons of photos on. Like an external hard drive. I also have about 5 dvd copies of every photo I have. My dad scanned all his photos, and my Grandfathers photos. So I have all of them in one folder with many sub-folders. I like having them on a computer hard drive because it's easy to search for specific photos or years, etc, when they are on the computer, rather than looking through disks. I do photo restoration on them randomly, and I hate to have one disk with "photos that I have edited" or such. I like having all my good/edited photos in one folder that people can look at with slide show screensavers.

Right now my main problem (probably easy to fix if I had the knowledge) is that on this main computer I can't log on to comcast to view my email on the web site. My windows live email works fine on all my 7 comcast addresses. Just this computer is not allowing the window to pop open after I put in my address and password on the web based email site comcast has. I get norton free for all my computers through comcast. I couldn't download it on this computer only. I actually downloaded the norton "manager" or package on my laptop, emailed it to myself and opened it up on this computer to get it installed. I've set pop up blocker off, put security settings about as low as they go, scanned for spyware, virus, everything I can think of, still, I can't get to comcast email. I sign in, then hit enter, and the program stalls, then I get the "can't connect" windows 7 message. Then I have to reboot to even get connection to the internet at all. This is a wireless desktop, the HP desktop is wireless also, so is the laptop. Only having the problem with this gateway.

Sounds like the external hard drive would be a good way to go. I didn't realize they were so cheap.


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July 19, 2010 at 04:37:49
Well, I'm disgusted with myself. I wanted to spend the day studying new photoshop techniques. Now I realize that I will have to learn about networking. I know nada about it, never needed it. Got these 2 new computers with Win 7 and just kinda "winged it" through the setup. Plus I went wireless in the house with netgear. My computers are connecting to my wireless printer (Eson workforce 610) and the wireless desktop computers (two of them) are connecting to the internet. The 4th computer is in another bedroom and connected with ethernet. This computer is older (win xp) and not wireless.

But I know so little about networking that I don't even know if it would be what I need to accomplish the task I mentioned in my 1st post. I don't know if I could move photos to the other comuters through the Home group network. I clicked check marks in all the sharing page of the homegroup. But as I said, I need to start from the "beginners" level and learn networks. This stinks. I really don't need to be able to go to the web based comcast email anyway. Windows live email works fine. I just hate to have something not working. I suppose my firewall or something is blocking comcast site. Could anybody post a link to where to start in learning networking? I found a couple and it looks like quite a project learning all this stuff. I was going to just go over to Fry's and get an external hard drive. I guess then I would have to study "backup" to use it, or do it manually. I don't think formating and re-installing win 7 would solve my inital problem I mentioned anyway. Maybe I'll just play internet poker today, my day off. lol.

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July 19, 2010 at 04:58:04
So the problem computer is also using a wireless internet connection? Are none of your computers connected by wire to the router? How is your signal strength?

As far as partitioning goes, if you know enough to reformat and install, etc. then you could partition with no problems.

All you need to do is select a custom install the next time you want to rework your rig. Then instead of just reformatting the existing partition that occupies all of the space on the hard drive you delete the partition and then create a new primary partition using only part of the space. Then elect to install Windows 7 to that primary partition while not worrying about the remainder of the drive.

After Windows 7 is up and running you then use the built in Disk Management feature to create additional partitions. In your case I would guess two more would be suitable. The next partition would normally be used for all your installed programs. Look at how much space is occupied by your programs now and add a good size cushion to that in order to determine the required partition size. After that partition is created and formatted you then create the third partition using all the remaining available space. Making the extended partitions should take all of 5 minutes.

When installing your programs you will need to select advanced, or custom install in order to change the path (partition letter) where they are to be installed. Once you do that for one program the D partition should become the default. You just need to pay attention when installing that it goes where you want it.

Finally, your Photo folders would be saved on the E extended partition. Just make new folders and rename them as desired. Then make sure that is where the photos are saved. Copying them from elsewhere will be simple. Just a copy/ paste operation.

Going back to your internet problem. Are you using Internet explorer as your browser? If so, I recommend you try mozilla Firefox 3xx. It is easier to use IMO and is much more customizable. You don't need to do anything to IE if you install FFox. You will get options when first installing to copy stuff from IE and it will ask you if you want to make FF your default browser. You can elect to go either way. You will get a desktop icon for FF and that is how you will open it. Try it, I am sure you will like it and it may solve your email problem. BTW, your email is not linked to your browser so it can be used in multiple browsers at the same time.

Now for the interesting part. If you take my advice and make three partitions the next step would be to image each partition individually. Now you will have three images.

When Windows 7 is crapped up you can simply use the image you made when you had a fresh install to restore the C partition. The beauty of this is that you won't need to reinstall anything on D or E and all will function as before. I hope that is clear. In your case that would be a huge time saver.

The entire process is easy. You just read the screens as you go and follow the prompts.

If you use the right imaging program you can perform incremental backups/ images of any changes since the full backup/ image. That saves more time. And you will automatically have a second copy of everything.

In your case you may wish to use a totally separate second hard drive internally to store your photo files. That depends on how much space is required. The principles are still the same as described above.

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