Top 5 Ways to Avoid Catastrophe in Production and Post

Studio Daily by Nathan Adams

It’s no surprise that rapid changes in technology and dramatic drops in budgets have forced many experienced producers out of their comfort zones and into uncharted waters. To make matter worse, networks and studios often still expect the impossible for a fraction of the budgets of years past.

As a consultant far too often I get called in to “fix” problems that could have been avoided with a little planning and understanding. The really big budget productions rarely have these issues because they can afford to deal with things on set and/or in post. But for low- and mid-budget productions most of the catastrophic problems I see in production and post could be overcome by following these five important guidelines.

1. Backup and Archive are different, yet equally important. A backup is a temporary copy that you make every day—or hour or shot—to ensure that there are multiple copies of specific data, until that data can be permanently archived. An archive is a permanent copy (or copies) that can also be used in disaster recovery, or final conform, but often just ends up on a shelf in a secure location(s) away from the rest of the media. Everything that’s shot on a card, disc or drive needs to be backed up immediately to at least two locations (three places if you can), and one of those locations should be a RAID-protected hard drive. A SINGLE HARD DRIVE IS NOT AN ARCHIVE. LTO tape is an archive. It’s cheap, it lasts a long time, and it takes deliberate effort. Additionally, if you take your data integrity seriously don’t “drag & drop” files to backup and archive. Instead, use software that can safely migrate data and run a checksum to make sure that all information has been moved entirely, safely and without corruption. read more...

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