1. Register NOW and become part of this fantastic knowledge base forum! This message will go away once you have registered.

Best Ways to Organize Audio Files On My Hard Drive?

Discussion in 'Recording' started by Lin, Dec 10, 2011.

  1. Lin

    Lin Active Member

    Hey Folks,
    Just thought I would introduce myself and say hello. I'm Lin. ((Hi)) smoke

    I am buying a computer with 1 Terabyte...any idea how to organize it. I'm using Pro Tools, Logic Pro, around 20 tracks with plugins. I was thinking of partitioning the hard drive and keeping all audio files, projects and itunes music files on the partition without the operating system. Should I be using an external drive instead?

    I want to avoid bogging down my computer in any way with these large files...Any ideas?? How do you stay organized and keep computer running fast and smooth? Also the last external drive I had died so do i have to make a (back up) of the back up drive...lol


  2. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Well-Known Member

    For any kind of music recording purposes, you should absolutely utilize external hard drives. You can store stuff on your OS drive but multitrack recording gets pretty dicey. Partitioning wouldn't help since the head would still have to keep jumping between partitions in order to read software and write audio. That'sa no good.

    As far as organization goes, you should create a new folder for each song or album project with your data files along with your digital audio residing within that folder. And no matter what you do, it'll be OK if you don't always pick up your toys and put them away.

    I have no room to put any of my toys anywhere anymore
    Mx. Remy Ann David
  3. Geozen

    Geozen Active Member

    One time I had a freak accident and lost all of my recordings and all of my pro tools files. It took me 2 years to work up the motivation to start all over again from scratch. Take it from me, buy an external hard drive. :)
  4. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Well-Known Member

    I also highly DON'T RECOMMEND ANY SAMSUNG HARD DRIVES. I had a total of 15 of those and all failed within about 100-200 hours. Sure, they replaced them under warranty but you can't replace your clients that way.

    Moral of the story... what goes around doesn't always come back.
    Mx. Remy Ann David
  5. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    I also do a weekly backup to usb drives that are not attached to the computer during the week. I have two drives by different manufacturers that I use on alternate weekends.

    A lot of people here with more elaborate operations than mine have much more secure systems - remote server backup and the like. Having all of the backups in one room runs the obvious risk of fire, flood, etc.
  6. Geozen

    Geozen Active Member

    This guy is prepared! :)
  7. Geozen

    Geozen Active Member

    Remy, do you suggest that you install protools to the OS drive and then only save your recording files to the External? Or are you suggesting that you would install protools completely to the external drive?
  8. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Well-Known Member

    No, all programs go onto the operating system drive. All recordings are routed to the external. After recording to the external, you take a second external and immediately back it up before doing anything else. You continue this process through until completion.

    I've never had the kind of failure rates with any of the other hard drive manufacturers as badly as the Samsung's. Sure, I've lost a couple of Western Digital & Seagate's but never 15 like the Samsung's. And they were all new. WTF? Specification indicated, MTBF of 150,000 hours are generally specified for most drives. Unfortunately, while there may be a language barrier with Samsung I think there is also a language barrier in their mathematics? It wasn't 150,000 hours, it was 150 hours which looks somewhat the same but is different. Maybe they just put in those extra zeros to look good?? Obviously.

    The answer to your question also begs if one can load a program onto the external. You can but there is other housekeeping portions of the program that must reside within the operating system. So you couldn't just take that hard drive and plug it into another computer and expect ProTools to run. You can do it if the external remains an integral connected part of your main computer in which it to be used. But that will still over tax that external hard drive while writing audio data. It's like money in the bank instead of in the mattress.

    Yes, my best friend from high school owns & runs a duplication company. So he had a specially built clean room & Library. He told me I could store all of my master tapes at his facility, which I did. I had very few off-line copies of my stuff for personal enjoyment purposes. Then he called me to tell me that his entire building burnt down. And with that, all of my master tapes were destroyed. So what I do have left came from 1/4 track & analog cassette copies, VHS-hi-fi and a couple of Sony PCM-F1's on VHS tape (not the recommended Betamax which had a switch to turn off the color dropout compensator. That kept the Reed Solomon error correction from working harder than it had to for VHS. But I wasn't a Betamax guy). I still have some digital clones of some of my larger jobs so all was not completely lost. The one I miss the most was my Tori Amos original demo when she was 14. Although I did find I had a single song she later came to us for which was a contest to come up with a song about Baltimore. We teamed her up with this very poor black ghetto band from downtown Baltimore we had been working with from the get go. Kind of a Earth Wind & Fire band that was killer! That drummer was only 14 and the lead singer was only 15. We didn't use the lead singer on her Baltimore song however. But I still have some crappy copies of that band. We all wanted to sound like and do what George Massenburg was doing. I came close along with my best friend Philip whose dad owned the studio I built for Philip and his dad. Unfortunately, the duplication facility was in the same location as the recording studio. I was able to recover 2/3 of the custom console I built from the dumpster after the fire as it was largely unscathed except for the custom cabinet we had built for it. So, as we all know, stuff happens even a proper storage facilities. It was either an act of God or an overheated QuadraPlex Video recorder of which they had many. C'est la vie

    A big loss for me and my history
    Mx. Remy Ann David
  9. Geozen

    Geozen Active Member

    I actually have been slacking and need a new external. this thread prompted me to buy one today haha. Its on it's way to my house. All music files will now be stored there again.
  10. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Well-Known Member

    Good Pennsylvanian!
  11. Lin

    Lin Active Member

    Wow! Thanks so much everyone...Awesome advice.

    *Remy- Sorry to hear about you losing your files...work like that is priceless. Thanks I'll steer clear of the samsungs for sure.

    I recently almost lost all of my music on some cheap external hard drive and I heard data recovery service is exxxxpensive...

    Soooo the failing drive I had was making some noises but still spinning on and off....I was reading that I should put it in the freezer with the idea that it may be a physical problem to do with the arm of the hard drive and freezing it would contract the metal and prolong the life of it for a few hours. I tried this, wrapped it in sarran wrap (I don't recommend this but I was desperate...lol) Clearly there was condensation once taken out of the freezer to the warmer air....sooo not good for your drive...

    I got a Data Recovery Program. Even though my computer did not recognize the drive, the program did and I was able to recover the drives contents. Here is the program I used just incase anyone needs it (DATA RESCUE 3)....it saved my life whew!

    *Geozen - I feel your pain. I am definitely going to store everything on an external hard drive and back it up regularly. Why can't they just make these drive to last...geeez

    *Wow! Bob you sound seriously organized my friend...you will inspire me :)

    Lesson from this thread BACK IT UP, BACK IT UP...Beeeeeep beeeeep....lol

    What do you all think of backing up your drive to a cloud? There is no risk of fire and the odds of your drive and the (back up) you have on the cloud going down at the same time is slim. If the cloud server ever goes down you can back up your drive to some other cloud...heck you could have two clouds....ahhahahha

    When you back up your drive is it compressed? and can it become corrupted?

    Last question. Do you partition your drives? If so Why and how do you organize them?
  12. Geozen

    Geozen Active Member

    The only time I've partitioned drives is to run Windows Xp on one partition and then Vista on the other. My old recording interface had no working drivers for 64 bit windows vista so I was forced to dual boot. Luckily I've upgraded to an M-box Mini which works perfectly with my Windows 7 laptop. I now record just off of that and can take it anywhere I need to go.
  13. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    Just search the archives. I got backup fever the hard way.

    I don't compress or partition. I've tried to use backup/compression programs in the past and had problems with recovery. I just create a new folder labeled by date and copy the latest version of the current project folders in there. I'm a weekend warrior operation and only work on a few projects at a time, so it takes me a long time to fill up two 250 Gb disks this way. (I say every week, but weeks like this (I'm giving finals) I'm not recording anything new, so I won't back up.) If were recording more or doing things at 192kHz or something, I'd probably have to find another system.

    I have to say I don't really consider myself all that careful. I feel like I should be backing up off site after every session. At least what I am doing is better than nothing.
  14. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    The "rule of t h u m b" is that unless the same data physically resides in different 3 places, it doesn't truly exist.
    1) The original file - Internal data drive
    2) First backup - External Drive
    3) Second backup - 2nd External drive, tape backup or writable media such as CD/DVD.

    Backup's should be performed on average - once per week.

    There are a few scheme's out there if you do a fair amount of file generation... Backup - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Share This Page