Never lose a photograph or video again! (pssst.... use Google Photos)

LeoRex

Retired Moderator
Nov 21, 2012
6,223
0
0
Visit site
The volunteer staff here at AC field a lot of questions and cried for help, but one of the most frustrating we come across is "I've deleted my photos, please help me recover them".

deleted photo.jpg

And we also know that this is one of the most easily avoided problems that we come across... the answer is simple; use cloud backups. There are several out there and most all are free or low priced and extremely easy to use and set up. I'm going to focus on one in particular (Google Photos), but theirs is not the only service available.

First, I thought it would be good to address the privacy concerns...

Let me start by reiterating something that I can't stress enough; Google does not sell your personal information, nor do they share that personal information with a third party. Yes, they collect pretty much every bit of stuff your phone is privy to, but all that information is locked away in your Google account. Google uses that information to then build a sort of digital profile of you, and then they use that profile in other parts of their business, but that profile is scrubbed of any personal bits. They do not give away your info to advertisers or third-party vendors, but they instead act as a sort of go-between... it's akin a marketing rep that hands a bouncer a stack of flyers and asks "Give these to all the sports fans inside that club". They have no idea who gets them, that is unless someone calls the number on the flyer and starts asking questions.

So you won't go on to some random website one day and see a picture of your grammy's 80th birthday party being used in promotional material... unless you go in and explicitly share those photos through something like 500px (who serve pictures to your Chromecast, for instance). And if you share any ANYTHING publically, there is little to stop a third party from snatching it up...

As for security, the photographs and videos you store are as secure as your Google account... which means it is as secure as you want it to be. If you use some of the more secure security features Google offers, like two-factor authentication, combined with a strong password that you don't re-use across all the other site accounts, then your stuff is very secure. I have not heard of any brute-force security breaches that have hit Google, only accounts that have been compromised due to a breach at an unrelated site combined with a weakly secured Google account.... or someone falling prey to a phishing scam.

OK, so now the good stuff... Google Photos... Photos is one of Google's best services that it provides to its users.... it's free, easy to use and has a mountain of features, many of which even regular users might not be aware of.

Screenshot_20170131-104714.png

At its core, Google Photos starts out as a straightforward cloud storage service. The Google Photos app is included in pretty much every phone (it's included in the core apps installed with Google Play Services). Setting it up is simple; launch it. You'll get a pop-up prompt, asking you to enable 'Backup & Sync', and giving you some options which you can change....

Upload Size : This is one of the more important bits... The Google Pixels come with unlimited full resolution photo and video storage, but everyone else has to choose between free 'high quality' storage and full resolution storage that will count towards your Google Drive quota. Now, for photos, unless you really, truly want to keep them at full resolution, or you upbought Google Drive storage, selecting the high-quality option is more than sufficient. I ran some tests a while back and it would appear that Google uses a compression that's similar to about a 90% JPG... and comparing the original and compressed picture results in few compression artifacts or jpeg trash. The picture, even if you start to pixel peep, looks identical. Video is more heavily compressed, which may or may not be a problem.

But... Google throws you 100GB of Drive storage for free, with 1TB running $10/m.

So you are backing your photos up, now what? Well, there's a lot more to Photos than storage.... it does have a web portal, photos.google.com, and the app shares near all of the functionality of the web page. And there, there's some magic. Google uses machine learning and all sorts of other fancy pants tools to automatically index your pictures. You can go into a page that'll show you all the faces it has detected and ask you to name them, at which point it'll go through and classify them, along with other traits... if my wife asks "Do you have that picture we took at the beach, the one with the seagull mosaic? Could we do something with that at all?" There's no need to remember the year, month, etc.... just click on the search bar and type "seagull"... THERE SHE IS..... then a quick run through Photos' built-in editor (which is sneaky good) and

IMG_20160710_175809 (2).jpg

It'll make albums automatically, cool little animations automatically, if you haven't gone in there ever and looked around, please do, it's an amazing service....
 

anon(9983233)

Well-known member
Aug 3, 2016
652
0
0
Visit site
Good information for those who need it. Personally I'll never use Google drive or any other cloud type service to store my images. But again this is sound advice for those who aren't as familiar with saving their data or images on a routine bases on separate devices, CD's or flash drives. As a last resort.. Does anyone recall "paper prints"?.. but even that has it's limits, water damage, fire damage, mold etc..
 

Aquila

Retired Moderator
Feb 24, 2012
15,904
0
0
Visit site
For those scared of google but fine with the even more unsavory companies and their respective security and privacy practices, there are also other services.
 

Ry

Moderator Captain
Trusted Member
Nov 16, 2010
17,656
214
0
Visit site
Good information for those who need it. Personally I'll never use Google drive or any other cloud type service to store my images. But again this is sound advice for those who aren't as familiar with saving their data or images on a routine bases on separate devices, CD's or flash drives. As a last resort.. Does anyone recall "paper prints"?.. but even that has it's limits, water damage, fire damage, mold etc..

One backup should be off site, no?

Google Photos makes it easy.
 

Almeuit

Moderator Team Leader
Moderator
Apr 17, 2012
32,278
22
0
Visit site
Google Photos for me as well. Quick and easy on Android. I set it up to backup only on WiFi and also only when charging... When I go home and plug it in it does the upload without me having to even think about it :).
 

Javier P

Ambassador
Feb 21, 2014
19,480
3
0
Visit site
Google Photos for me as well. Quick and easy on Android. I set it up to backup only on WiFi and also only when charging... When I go home and plug it in it does the upload without me having to even think about it :).

That's my set up as well, only on WiFi and while charging.
 

LeoRex

Retired Moderator
Nov 21, 2012
6,223
0
0
Visit site
Yeah, I learned my lesson on that on a trip to Disney. I had it set to download on any WiFi and after taking a ton of video, I slaughtered my battery... Disney world has a ton of public hotspots, and it spent the entire time uploading.
 

anon(9983233)

Well-known member
Aug 3, 2016
652
0
0
Visit site
Not just one back up but several as the case may be. Just depend on how important the image is or needs to be. But out in the field, uploading to a flash drive suits my needs. But with the advancement in SD cards.. the new 1TB SD card would hold way more images then I could ever take in a life time.. So backing up or saving images isn't that important. Besides there's only one person I need to worry about getting these images stored or saved my wife and I think I've managed this very well for the last 30 years..
 

SpookDroid

Ambassador
Jul 14, 2011
19,228
456
83
Visit site
Not just one back up but several as the case may be. Just depend on how important the image is or needs to be. But out in the field, uploading to a flash drive suits my needs. But with the advancement in SD cards.. the new 1TB SD card would hold way more images then I could ever take in a life time.. So backing up or saving images isn't that important. Besides there's only one person I need to worry about getting these images stored or saved my wife and I think I've managed this very well for the last 30 years..

That would be great if SD Cards were reliable. They're not. And some manufacturers (I'm looking at you, Sammy!) do tend to fry SD cards more often than others.
 

LeoRex

Retired Moderator
Nov 21, 2012
6,223
0
0
Visit site
Yeah... SD media is unreliable, and whenever I have to rely on them, I get nervous until I get get them off on to something more reliable.

Back in the day, the wife and I lost half of a vacation's photos when the card in the digital camera went kaput. This was somewhat early in the day of dig photo, so it was a pain in the butt to find a replacement. Once was enough. So when phone cameras started to rival the P&S units, and cloud backup became an option...

There's a card in my wife's S7 Edge at the moment, but that is solely to give it plenty of headroom. With all the crap loaded on that thing, it leaves only about 4 or 5G for photos and videos, so the 64G card leaves plenty of room.
 

GdayMate

New member
May 2, 2017
1
0
0
Visit site
How safe? Some photos have been inexplicably, totally changed on my systems.

My goal was to keep EVERY PHOTO on the cloud and just some favourites on my phones.
Should I worry?
(Google Photos shares pix, too for access on iphone, tablet or [Win 10] PC. But what happens on the various devices when I delete a pic from one phone? Or from the Google Photos cloud? Does it ever cascade to delete all copies? )

But now, the scary news. Late last Saturday night I took Pic A [bloodstains to show to the vet, a jpeg about 3.2 MB]. Sunday morning, Pics B and C for comparison. All good then. Sunday lunch, at the vet clinic, Pic A was missing and there was a new pic in its place and time, a really lo-res 53KB square pic of a golden mobile phone. The "Details" button showed it as /storage/emulated/0/kbatterydoctor/caches/... .png [where ... is 37 mixed sexagesimal characters {0,1,...,e,f} and hyphens]. Unlike the legit. pix, no camera name or location metadata, but the time was same as Pic A.

The missing pic A occurs on all devices. Also in the first few [Android] screens of recent pics there are maybe three more of these cuckoo pix [same gold phone, gold wallpaper, on golden gravel. too fuzzy to even read the icons.]
The only other recent oddity is finding a [How to] Perform Sunni Namaz app on my home screen when I would be surprised if I downloaded it myself. [not a Muslim, so this specifically Sunni prayer tutor does not appeal]
Avast, MalwhereBytes and AVG scans find no problems. Camera was Sony xperia z3 running Marshmallow [Nougat N/A]
Any ideas?
Where could i look to try to find the replaced file [name and location are different] ? It is not with Pix B and C.

The folder /storage/emulated/0/kbatterydoctor/caches/ does indeed have this pic and about 12 more, most in a similar style. I do run a battery charger app and Google Photos and I have allowed an ?unknown app to move my files to my SD card, but not, i think, in that morning.
 

Trending Posts

Forum statistics

Threads
941,407
Messages
6,908,703
Members
3,157,914
Latest member
carlossinsurance