By technical editor Matt Allard:
Backing up the material you shoot is a pretty tedious chore. Often I have to do this late at night after a day’s shooting. This is when I’m the most likely to make mistakes due to tiredness. Sometimes I’m dealing with multiple formats and cards from different cameras and it is very easy to forget to copy a card, duplicate the same card twice by mistake, or not copy the proper file structure. Just one small mistake backing up and I would lose valuable work.
Recently I’ve been testing out an automated card copy utility for video and photo files called ShotPut Pro. Made by Imagine Products it is available for both Mac OSX and Windows platforms. The software gives you the ability to make multiple copies across multiple drives at once and then verify all these files. Why is verification important? It is all good and well to just drag and drop files from place to another using regular file copy, but if those files are corrupted or missing in transfer you run you the risk of losing them. By using ShotPut Pro I can copy the exact contents to as many drives as I have hooked up at once and then get verification that every single file has been copied identically.
The interface is easy to use and they have some great short tutorial videos on their website to get you up and running quickly. I looked hard to find faults in the product but it does exactly what Imagine products says it does. My only small complaint is I wish the licenses enabled you to put one copy on your desktop and one on your laptop, but unfortunately the license only lets you use it on a single computer and you need to buy another for a second device.
While copy and verification is far from sexy it does give you piece of mind that what your shooting is getting copied and backed up correctly. Is it really worth not backing up and verifying your precious work? Well I think you will know the answer the first time you lose material.
Imagine products currently have a July sale on and of you buy one copy of ShotPut Pro you can get another copy for 50% off.