File Handling

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Stephen
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File Handling

Post by Stephen » Sun Mar 11, 2007 4:15 pm

Getting in a bit of pickle here peeps!

Having used PC's for few years now and not lost too many files !!

(damn... should not have said that should I?)....

I'm realising that I cannot keep all the files all of the time on the hard drives...

yep ...you may have guessed I'm keeping all files associated with producing films with Adobe Premier, the avi's.mp3's etc ...... and boy are they massive

fortunately I have been able to perlion an assortment of HDD's over the last few years ...

but my disc management/collection has gawn well over the top....

ie ...

PC1 (video)- 320Gbx2 SATA, 250Gbx1 IDE, 300Gbx1 EXT USB hdds all nearing 75% full
PC2 (audio and internet) - with interchangable caddies ... so no problem with this one

when I have completed a film I save it to DV tape (I think this is the cheapest storage media solution? - 13Gb on a tape for £1.50 doesn't seem too bad to moi?)


What are other peeps setups like ?

how do you manage your HDD's to setup efficient working of files ?


(hey... admin can we attach pics on here to show peeps rigs?)
Stephen

Film making is not a matter of Life and Death
It's much more important than that.

ned c
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File handling

Post by ned c » Sun Mar 11, 2007 4:48 pm

My studio set up is a Mac for editing (FCP Studio) and a PC for office work. Both have external, firewire "hot swap" caddies and a selection of trays with HDDs of various capacities. I use the Granite Digital System (USA). As HDDs are so cheap now, I am paying about 40 cents per gigabyte at present, and the trays cost around $20 I archive anything that may need a re-edit on HDDs as well as two archive copies to tape, one on regular miniDV and one on a large cassette DVCAM tape where I store a number of projects. Also a copy to DVD for the archive. If there is absolutely no expectation of a re-edit I delete the files from the HDD but keep the tapes and the DVD. I keep all camera tapes, never re-use them, with the low cost of tape these days there is no point and they are a useful source of shots for future projects.

I stick a plain label on top of each HDD tray and pencil in a list of projects stored on that HDD. Each HDD has a separate identity and is on the Mac desktop as a folder with the project short cuts in it.

For camera tape cataloging I use CatDV (a UK product) and hope they will have an HDV version at NAB this year. Hard copies can be made from the shot lists and are very useful when looking for something shot 5 years ago!

I use 50 tape trays for storing miniDV tapes and 18 tape trays for storing the large DVCAM tapes. These are molded plastic trays and available from the tape suppliers here.

Is this the sort of info you are looking for?

Ned C

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stingman
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Post by stingman » Sun Mar 11, 2007 5:04 pm

Stephen. Tell me about it! My 3 built in harddrives are full.
The best way is to either buy USB harddrives so you can take it in and out or (what I do) is to put the finished film back onto MiniDV tape. If really want more back up then put the film onto 2x MiniDV tape and DVD. If you go the DVD route then you must remember that DVD is less quality and also it will need converting back when needed, which isn`t very good. I don`t trust DVD`s for archiving. You may be able to burn files to DVD (not in DVD format). The files will be big but the qyality will be good. A bit like using DVD-RW or CD-RW for a virtual storage.
Ian Gardner
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Stephen
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Post by Stephen » Sun Mar 11, 2007 5:28 pm

Thanks Ned... you are very well organised by the look of it !!!

I agree with your reasoning that the tapes should be kept with original footage and not re-used......

"no re-edit in the foreseeable future deleted off the HDD".... I think this is maybe where I'm going wrong..

the original tape is in the rack here (I use the 14 tape rack from 7dayshop .com for £5.. they can be stacked vertically)

Certainly like the sound of CatDV

I was unaware and maybe did not give it enough thought that a good piece of cataloguing software would help to hunt down that elusive piece of footage on the DV tape



Thanks Ned ...you have helped me sort my pickle !!!
Stephen

Film making is not a matter of Life and Death
It's much more important than that.

Michael Slowe
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File Handling

Post by Michael Slowe » Wed Mar 14, 2007 11:30 am

This is certainly an on going problem. My strong feeling is not to attempt to store past productions or even media other than that needed immediately on hard drives, whether internal or external.

I have about 5 TB's since I am working with HD and in order to nurse the best performance from my drives I like to free them up whenever possible.

The safest archive is still tape. I keep tape masters of productions both on HD and DVCAM tape (then transferred to MiniDV for exhibition and exchanges). I actually don't keep camera originals although I understand why people would prefer to do so. I also make DVD's nowadays but don't rely on them for archiving because, as has been written here, the quality does not approach that of tape and they may well decay over a fairly short time span.

There are reasonably priced firewire external drives available where films can be stored and I have done this but exporting and re importing is a bind and I think it would be preferable to re import from the tape master if any further editing is desired.

To sum up for the person who first raised this: Don't jam up your drives with old media, keep them free for current work. Archive to a good tape format (preferably DVCAM for DV) and rely on camera original tapes for the raw media if you really want to be bothered with that. Having said all this the BBC have stipulated a tape free production environment by 2010. All I can say is their archive records will have to be good and who is going to check all the solid state storage discs and whether their precious material is still recoverable?

ned c
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Post by ned c » Wed Mar 14, 2007 5:08 pm

One of the reasons I keep projects on external drives is that in my professional days it was much easier to re-edit a client's piece some time after it had been completed. Just hook up the drive and make the revisions, most often this was with foreign language versions where shots had to be extended or moved around to accomadate the language. I don't transfer the information but edit directly on the external HDD. You can create EDLs (Edit Decison Lists) and automatically recover the shots but this is time consuming and most EDLs recover the shots but not the applied FX.

Now, I keep my projects so that they can be re-edited to different lengths for the various Festivals. Most short films don't take up much space even with the clip bins. I remove the unused clips but leave the full length used clips. Where a project takes up 10 to 20 GB a number of projects can be stored on a single HDD. This applies to DV and HDV but HD does take up much more space. Transfer rates do slow as the disk fills up and I can understand Michael's concern but you could still store projects on external HDDs quite separately from your RAID.

I agree that tape archives are the best way to go but I keep a "master" DVD so that I can quickly make copies for people.

There is much discussion these days about "asset management" and this is where a good logging system is valuable. What storage/data recovery system will the BBC use as they become "tapeless"?

Ned C

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