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What are the Different Types of Digital Picture Storage?

Harriette Halepis
Harriette Halepis

The dawn of the digital camera has made snapping photographs easier than ever before. However, storing these photographs is one thing that most people do not put much thought into. The fact of the matter is that you may lose your photographs forever if they are not stored properly.

Media changes all the time. Every couple of years, a new type of media is invented that eliminates older types. When this happens, the devices that were once used to view, store, and save videos and photographs can no longer be purchased. While many people store digital photographs only on computer hard drives, this is also a mistake.

An external hard drive.
An external hard drive.

Computers are solid machines that were built to last, but only for a couple of years. Once a computer's hard drive fails, sometimes without warning, all files that were on the failing hard drive are lost. Though some files may be retrieved, this is often an expensive and difficult procedure. In short, don't wait for your computer to fail. Instead, consider some of the following digital picture storage options.

A USB drive.
A USB drive.

An external hard drive is one good digital picture storage solution. This type of hard drive is not part of your computer, so it won't fail if your computer fails. However, digital hard drives can fail on their own, though they still prove to be more reliable than a computer hard drive.

CDs and DVDs are two more digital picture storage option.s Photographs can be transferred to these storage devices, though even these devices may fail with time. If this form of storage is chosen, it is important to purchase high-quality CDs and DVDs that will not deteriorate as quickly as less expensive options.

Data CDs are a popular way to store digital photos.
Data CDs are a popular way to store digital photos.

Another idea is to print all of your photographs, and store them inside lightproof containers. This might be a costly endeavor, but printing photographs ensures that you will have a hard copy of your memories should a digital device fail. Print photographs should be stored properly in order to prevent fading.

Finally, online albums offer people a great way to store lots of photographs safely and securely. These Internet sites allow you to upload your photographs directly to them for a monthly or yearly fee. The great thing about these sites is that you can easily share your photographs with friends and family members without printing anything.

In the end, two different types of digital picture storage should be executed. Store your photographs on DVDs, CDs, online, or on a hard drive, but also think about creating print photographs. This is the best digital picture storage advice, since choosing two methods will allow you to preserve your memories indefinitely.

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Discussion Comments


@croydon - That kind of organization is also important because it's rarely unlimited when you're using online photo storage. Even if the space is big enough it takes a long time to upload everything and I don't personally want to spend ten minutes waiting for photographs of my own thumbs to get put into the cloud.


@browncoat - Even if you don't plan to print out all your images, I would still recommend that people go through their photos regularly and make sure they weed out the ones that aren't worth keeping. I take hundreds of photos when I get started, but often it will be five of the same thing, or a dozen of a tree that looked cool in person but isn't very interesting in a photo.

Even with infinite picture storage space, you'll still want to be able to get hold of the pictures that are important to you without having to go through hours worth of random stuff every time you go looking for them.

It's very difficult to overcome my pack-rat tendencies when it comes to photos because they are so easy to keep, but I make myself stick to a strict filing system because otherwise I'd never be able to find anything worth seeing.


One thing I would recommend is to regularly go through your photographs and pick out the ones that you want to keep and the ones that don't really need to be taking up space on your computer. Digital picture storage space might seem cheap these days, but if you are taking good quality pictures and taking a lot of them it can quickly add up.

Don't try to make more space by taking lower quality pictures either, as you will pay for it if you want to print them. With so many larger options available these days for printing photographs it's really important to have large, good quality images.

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    • An external hard drive.
      An external hard drive.
    • A USB drive.
      By: zayedbaloch
      A USB drive.
    • Data CDs are a popular way to store digital photos.
      By: jamdesign
      Data CDs are a popular way to store digital photos.