Use instaport.me and REWIND to Archive your Instagram Photos

No doubt you’ve heard about Instagram and how they are planning on using users data according to its new privacy policy. Instagram, the media, and the users are in a cyber-argument over this topic, but at the end of the day it is your personal choice where you’d like your data. Using Instagram as a photo sharing method is great, but hoping to also use it as an archive of your photos doesn’t work out so well.

Whether you decide to keep your account open or not, we at DIGISTOR thought we’d let you know there is a way to download all your Instagram files to your PC or Mac, then archive them to Blu-ray disc for safe keeping.

Using instaport.me you can download all your Instagram photos to your computer in a single .zip file. You can unzip this file in your photos folder so you can easily view them. Also using REWIND you are now able to select the photos you’d like archived to Blu-ray disc. It’s simple and secure!

Side note: instaport.me is being hammered right now, and may be very slow at responding. Give it some time to settle, and then export and archive away! instaport.me has opened up secondary servers for overflow and is able to give you your Instagram photos within a few minutes of request!

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5 Reasons to Use Blu-ray for Permanent Backups


Cloud backup, external hard drive, USB drive, tape or optical drive; it’s easy to be confused with so many options for backing up your data and files.

There are pros and cons to every backup solution, but if want to permanently backup your photos, video, music and other data then archiving to recordable Blu-ray is the clear choice. Here are 5 reasons why:

Cost – Blu-ray drive prices have come down significantly over the past few years, but more importantly the media prices are now as low as $.04 per GB.  Not too bad for a permanent data storage.

Longevity – High quality Blu-ray discs have a hard coat, scratch resistant material and can provide up to 50 years or longer archival life.

Security – Archiving to Blu-ray gives you a physical copy of your data that is not vulnerable to online data breach and can easily be stored in a safe or offsite location.

Capacity – Blu-ray discs are available in capacities of 25GB, 50GB, 100GB and 128GB allowing the average user to permanently archive a lifetime of photo’s on just a handful of discs.

Ease of Use – Using REWIND Archiving Software you can easily archive or restore all of your photos, video, music and data in 3 simple steps.

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How to: Update and Continue an Archive in REWIND

Adding files to your archived Blu-ray discs is as easy as starting the archive to begin with. Using REWIND to store your files to Blu-ray means you can continue your archive, even if you started your archive on a write once BD-R disc! Yes, you can continue burning to this same disc until it’s full, then REWIND will span multiple discs to keep your files safe no matter how many GB’s you have!

We put together a little video showing how to update and continue an archive you started using REWIND.

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How To: Archive your iTunes folder Permanently

As your iTunes collection grows, you may want to keep a permanent local copy of all your created playlists, XML files, library files and apps! Let’s face it, if you lost your iTunes collection, and had to redownload all your GB of apps, plus reorganize your music into the playlists you want, you’d be at it for days.

Here’s a quick <1min video on how to ensure a permanent copy of your iTunes folder by archiving to Blu-ray with REWIND®

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Insurance policy for digital photos

Just think about how many different insurance policies a typical household might have:  medical, dental, life, homeowners or renters, personal articles, auto, long term disability and my favorite the personal liability umbrella.  Some would say that we live in a world of insurance overload.  Perhaps, but insurance makes us feel safe and we sleep well at night knowing that we are protected.

That’s why it is so surprising that most people make little or no effort to protect their most valuable and irreplaceable digital assets such as photographs, videos, music and other personal data files. The average consumer does not have their data properly backed up or archived and could easily lose a lifetime of precious data at any time.

An external hard drive is great for managing continuous backups and day to day changes in your data and the cloud is perfect for sharing, collaborating and meeting basic backup needs.  However, I would not consider either of these solutions a real strategy for the long-term preservation of your digital data.  Why?   Well the reality is that hard drives will eventually fail; they might last a year, they might last six years.  The only certainty is that they will eventually fail.  While cloud backup solves this problem by offering redundant offsite backup, it opens the door for a host of other concerns and you should really think twice before offloading your permanent data storage to the cloud.  “Another Day another Cloud backup company”

To truly ensure the long-term protection and preservation of your digital photos and files, it is important to properly archive to a data storage media that is specifically designed for longevity such recordable Blu-ray. DIGISTOR’s Personal Archive Recorder comes with everything you need to permanently archive and easily manage and restore a lifetime of personal digital files. We like to think of it as an insurance policy for your digital data.

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Pros and Cons of Data Storage Devices

There are lots of choices when it comes to backing up or archiving your data and digital assets.  While everyone’s needs are different and there is no one-size fits all solution, we took a look at the most common data storage devices used by consumers or professions for backup and archive. Here are some of the benefits and pitfall associated with them.

External Hard Drive: When considering the price per GB, ease of use and ability to quickly restore files, it is no wonder this is the go-to backup solution for most people. I myself have at least 3 of these in my home office.

What most people don’t realize when choosing a hard-drive only backup solution is that hard drives are not designed for longevity. While you may occasionally see a lifespan of up to 7 years, the average hard drive will fail in 3-5 years. If you don’t have a backup of your backup and/or a permanent archive of your data, it may be impossible or prohibitively expensive to recover your files when your hard drive fails.

Another thing to consider is that your backup data really should be kept separate from your computer. In case of fire, theft or other disaster your hard-earned backup would most likely be rendered useless if left sitting on a hard drive right next to your computer. While most hard drives these days are portable and can easily be stored separately, the average user leaves their sole backup drive sitting right next to their computer.

USB Flash Drive:  While flash drives are generally much more expensive on a per GB basis, they share many of the same benefits as a traditional HDD solution; easy, quick to access and portable.  Flash is also a great media for sharing or easily distributing data.

However, flash also shares one of the biggest drawbacks of HDD which is longevity. Most reports estimate the lifespan of USB flash drive about the same as HDD, depending on use and storage environment.  This number can vary greatly depending on the quality; it is important to stay away from cheap USB flash drives if using for backup.

Re-writable CD/DVD: On a cost per GB basis CD or DVD can be an inexpensive storage solution since many people already have CD or DVD drives. The lifespan of a CD or DVD is generally longer than a hard drive or USB flash if you take care of the disc, and keep it free from scratches. You are also more likely store a disc offsite or away from your computer. The biggest drawback is the capacity. It also takes more work to burn a CD/DVD disc than it does to setup an automated backup to HDD and most people are not disciplined enough to manually manage their backups on a daily or weekly basis.

Cloud Storage / Online Backup: On the surface online backup seems like the answer to all your backup concerns; inexpensive monthly payments (or even free if you don’t have much data), easy to setup and automate backups, offsite copies of your data managed by a 3rd party and access to your files from any web browser.

However, when considering an online backup provider it is really important to do your homework, look at the fine print and consider the following:

  • Cost – while it is certainly possible to enjoy very inexpensive or even free online backup if you have a small amount of data, the cost can grow very quickly if you have large files such as videos, photo’s and music. And remember, this is a monthly or yearly rental fee; when compared to the average life of a hard drive or other backup solution this can really add up.
  • Bandwidth – probably the most overlooked issue today with online backup. The first problem is actually getting your data transferred to the provider. With the bandwidth available to the average consumer or small business, it could easily take 2 months or longer to simply upload a few hundred GB’s of data to an online backup provider.
  • Restore – sure you can access your data, but how long does it actually take to restore? With the 250GB data cap limitation of most consumers, it could be impossible to fully restore if you need all of your files back at one time.
  • Migration to another storage media or provider – how easy is it to move your data to another solution?
  • Who owns your data? – what happens when you cancel your membership or can no longer afford the service. Does your data disappear?
  • Is the provider really an online backup service or a provider of online sharing and collaboration tools? There is a difference.

This is not a bash against online backup; this is clearly where the market is headed and some of the benefits may outweigh the disadvantages.  However there are still many roadblocks and pitfalls to consider before jumping into a cloud only backup solution. We will tackle many of these issues in future articles.

RAID – RAID may win the battle in capacity and redundancy but can be expensive compared with other storage media options for consumers and small business. RAID systems also tend to be quite difficult to set up and manage, even for expert users or IT professionals. While RAID can be effectively used as part of a backup plan for large users and enterprises, it is not an ideal solution for the average user or for permanent archiving.

 

 

Tape – While tape is often used as part of a backup plan for large enterprise, it is generally not cost effective for the average consumer, professional user or small business.  With an estimated longevity of 7-10 years, tape is not ideal solution for long-term archiving.

Recordable Blu-ray (BD-R): In our opinion, archiving to Blu-ray disc is the easiest and most cost effective method for the average consumer, small business, photographer or video professional to permanently store their data. While not necessarily the ideal solution for daily backups, let’s look at some of the benefits of using BD-R for long-term storage:

  • Longevity – a high quality blu-ray disc can provide 50-100 years archival life due to low sensitivity to light and a hard coat scratch resistant material protecting the data.
  • Media Capacity –  25GB, 50GB & 100GB on a single recordable disc (BD-R)
  • Costs – the most cost effective option for long term storage or permanent archiving of data with media costs as low as $0.04 per GB.
  • WORM media– (Write Once Read Many) media which is a necessity for a true archive or permanent storage.
  • Quick random access – allows you to easily find and restore a single file or files in a large archive.
  • Security – archiving to BD-R allows a secure, permanent copy of your data that can easily be stored in a safe or other offsite location.
  • Ease of use – archiving to BD-R is even easier than burning a CD or DVD.  DIGISTOR’s REWIND archiving software is designed for the specific purpose of easily archiving all of your digital assets. This includes:  Archive or Restore in 3 easy steps, endless archive across multiple discs, automatic scans and updates of archived folders or files, and the ability to use the software on both PC and Mac.

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Blu-ray BDXL Writable Discs Are Here to Stay


New advancements in optical disc technology are continuing to make their way into the consumer market.  For instance, BDXL is the newest format in the Blu-ray category. BDXL consists of 100GB BD-R/RE and 128GB BD-R discs.  Boasting even more capacity, these discs should (at one point or another) be part of your archive arsenal.

But you don’t need to wait to enjoy the benefits of Blu-ray.  You can start enjoying the benefits immediately with units such as the DIGISTOR line of Blu-ray products.  For those concerned about future compatibility with this new format, fear no more.  All DIGISTOR Blu-ray drives and the include REWIND™ software, comes with built in support for BDXL straight out of the box.  This hardware/software combination, along with REWIND’S endless disc-to-disc spanning, means your archive can truly be limitless.

In addition, there’s already so much out there for existing dual layer (50GB) and single layer (25GB) counterparts.  Watch as prices on these BDXL discs drop and most likely have a trickledown effect on single/dual layer discs as well.

By adding just 1 additional layer (3 total) to the typical 50GB disc, there’s now 100GB available space at your disposal.  How can this be done you ask?  Simply by putting more data on each layer (33.3GB to be exact).  Think of how many of us have small hard drives with data we want to keep, and ideally stored on something other than conventional USB flash, hard disk or SSD that’s completely vulnerable to electrometric fields I might add.  Simply put, no other format has this much capacity and electrometric immunity that Blu-ray XL can deliver.

Let me help by breaking it down to the all the various formats available on Blu-ray discs:

25GB BD-R single layer – A solid, reliable, most cost effective powerhouse that’s the fastest of the bunch for writing – up to 16X on some burners.  Due to their simplicity, they’re inherently the most compatible for use with stand-alone Blu-ray players and PS3 gaming console.

50GB BD-R dual layer – Offers more space per disc with a reasonable price premium.

100GB BD-R and 125GB triple/quad layer:  The latest and the greatest, requiring new Blu-ray hardware and updated software to burn. DIGISTOR supports BDXL media in REWIND, and we also sell 100GB BD-R discs.

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Not Just Another Backup Program

When speaking with friends and business acquaintances about our new software release (REWIND Archiving Software) the initial response is usually something like “um, sounds interesting but aren’t there already dozens of backup programs that do the same thing?”  It takes a quick explanation about the differences between backing up and archiving and then comes that Aha! moment.

Even if you regularly back up, the typical hard drive will fail in 3-5 years. Unless you maintain a regimented personal backup policy including multiple copies in multiple locations (which most people don’t) or are technically gifted enough to setup and maintain a comparatively expensive RAID system, your data and files are at risk art panels for inflatables.

Of course a cloud backup solution will solve some of these problems by offering redundant, offsite storage.  However, most people fail to consider several important factors before moving to the cloud.   For instance, how long would it really take to restore your all your files from the cloud?  If you have a significant amount of data it could take weeks or even months to restore.  The annual costs is also something that can quickly add up if you have large files such as photos, music or video and what happens if you have a financial setback and can’t pay for a year or so – what happens to your data?

So why is archiving with REWIND different? Well, unlike a backup, an archive is a permanent copy of your digital data such as photos, music, videos and files that you want to keep forever. Rewind allows you to easily archive all of your digital assets to a recordable Blu-ray disc which when properly used and stored have lifespan of up to 50 years or longer. If you need to restore your data, it’s as simple as inserting a disc and selecting the files you need.

Archiving to Blu-ray is not a new concept and there are several established providers of enterprise level archiving systems that utilize Blu-ray technology.  But until now the options for personal archiving have pretty much been limited to off the shelf data burning software that were not designed for ease of use for archiving or restoring.

If you want to protect a lifetime of digital photos, music, video and other precious data we encourage you to give archiving with REWIND a try.

Show Press Release: DIGISTOR Ships First-of-Kind Archiving Software for the PC and MAC

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DIGISTOR Ships First-of-Kind Archiving Software for the PC and MAC.
________
REWIND offers unparalleled ease-of-use for permanently archiving and restoring of digital files.

CAMPBELL, CA — July 26, 2012 — DIGISTOR announced today that REWIND™, its novel archive and restore application for the PC and MAC, is now available for retail purchase and is shipping with select hardware bundles.

REWIND software allows users to easily and securely archive all of their digital assets such as photos, movies, music and documents on scratch resistant 25GB, 50GB or 100GB Blu-ray recordable discs for permanent storage. With an embedded restore application, REWIND offers the ability via a simple 3 click process to restore files directly from the archived disc(s) to any computer without software installation required.

Compatible with all Blu-ray burners, REWIND is designed with an exceptionally user-friendly interface that can be configured in 3 simple steps as shown here: http://youtu.be/UpBmcJS_YlA. It also features unique cross-platform compatibility for use on PC or MAC. REWIND also offers several unique features such as:

• Automatic file and folder tracking:
Automatically tracks the files and folders selected for archive. File tracking keeps individually selected files up to date in the archive. Folder tracking will track changes and new files or folders added to the tracked folder

• Easily update archives and span multiple discs:
With REWIND it’s easy to update an archive as digital assets grow and can keep an archive going forever. REWIND will continue to burn to the Blu-ray disc until it’s full, then it will span to multiple discs allowing users to continuously grow an archive.

• Finish Later – Pause your archive mid-burn:
REWIND features a unique Finish Later feature, allowing users to pause an archive mid-burn and finish it later picking up right where they left off.

• Restore Anywhere:
Easily restore to any computer by simply inserting an archive disc and running the Restore app from the disc, no software installation required! Have a large archive that spans multiple discs? No problem! Simply insert the last disc in the archive and the restore application shows files across all discs and will request the discs needed for restore.

“As the amount of digital data continues to grow at an explosive rate, it’s more important than ever to maintain a secure, permanent copy of precious digital files” says Brian Friss, Vice President of DIGISTOR. “Previously, consumers and small business were reduced to backup to massive hard drives or cloud environments not under their control. REWIND is the first software of its type designed to offer reliable, scalable and easy to configure, digital archiving at an affordable price.”

REWIND is available online at www.amazon.com and www.digistor.com with a suggested retail price of $39.99. REWIND will also be bundled with all DIGISTOR Blu-ray drives beginning July 26, 2012. For more information on REWIND or other data storage or multimedia products offered by DIGISTOR, please visit www.digistor.com.

About DIGISTOR

DIGISTOR, a division of Sunland International, LLC, is a leading innovator, manufacturer and distributor of digital archiving products and secure storage solutions.

Serving the industrial and global OEM market since 2001, DIGISTOR provides industrial-grade archiving and digital-video storage solutions to consumers, professional users, SMB’s and specialized industries such as photography, broadcast, videography, medical imaging and security/surveillance.

DIGISTOR™ and Rewind™ are trademarks of Sunland International, LLC.

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3 Steps to a Perfect Personal Archive

Archiving your digital assets, especially your can’t-live-without documents and photos, is more important now than ever before. Everything we create, save, and share is on our PC or Mac computers. Fortunately, archiving your entire digital life has become more affordable, and amazingly easy with the release of DIGISTOR’s consumer friendly archiving application called REWIND™. DIGISTOR has seen an increased interest in Blu-ray burners and 50GB BD-R media for archiving use, especially in the Mac community as of late. REWIND™ allows your PC and Mac to turn into a powerful permanent archiving machine.

You will need:

  • A Blu-ray burner
    • DIGISTOR offers a great slim sized external Blu-ray burners for ease of installation, and portability. One Blu-ray burner can be transferred to all the PC’s and Mac’s in your house!

     

  • Blu-ray recordable discs

     

  • Archiving Software
    • This is where REWIND™ comes in. We’ll be going over the 3 easy steps to creating a perfect personal archive with REWIND™. You don’t have to use DIGISTOR brand Blu-ray burners and Blu-ray media with REWIND though. If you already own a Blu-ray burner, we will be offering REWIND™ as retail software next month.

Step 1: Give your Archive a Name

Yes, we said this would be amazingly easy. A full step dedicated to giving your archive a name. REWIND™ can continue to span discs once the Blu-ray is full. You don’t have to limit your archives to just one specific group of photos like “Our Vacation to Hawaii”. You can broaden out your archive and save every byte of your photo albums and start an archive called “World Travels 2012”. Some other examples might be “Entire Music Archive” or “Scanned Documents”.

Step 2: Select Your Files

REWIND™ has a great file browser for maneuvering your computer and selecting files to archive. The thumbnail view makes it a breeze to view a large icon or thumbnail views of photos. Easily select a file or folder by choosing the checkbox next to it. You can click ‘n drag to select multiple items at once. For large archives, the select all button works really well. Visit the Pictures shortcut on the left, hit “Select All” and bam, you have all your photos selected for archiving.

An additional easy to use feature for selecting files and folders is the drag ‘n drop ability to add files and folders to the archive by choosing them from your regular PC or Mac file system and just dragging the files or folders on top of the REWIND™ Select Files window. The files and folders are now automatically selected in REWIND™.

 

Step 2b: Review your choices in the Preview Files Tab

Not really a full step in itself, REWIND™ gives you a list view to review your choices and make any final decisions to remove a file or folder.

 

Step 3: Create Your Archive

Yes, step 3 is nearly as simple as Step 1! All the settings are already chosen for you, but we’ll review them here anyway. If you’re using an External DIGISTOR Blu-ray burner, make sure it is plugged in, switched ON, and loaded with your favorite brand of BD-R or BD-RE media. The Choose Archive Burner dropdown only shows Blu-ray drives which means your burner should automatically be selected.

Select your archive speed from the second drop down. REWIND™ also does this for you by automatically selecting the maximum speed the drive and media can burn together.

REWIND™ gives your disc a name, but you have the chance to change that on this step as well. The disc name will have an appended disc number after it has been burned.

REWIND™ can verify the data while writing to the disc. This is checked ON by default, so you can have peace of mind that your data was verified as it was written to the disc. This does lengthen the overall burn time, but for important long term archives it’s worth the wait.

Click Archive it!

That’s it! You’ve archived your favorite documents, pictures, music, or all of the above!

Remember to write the name of your archive and what disc number it is so you can have a pleasant restore process if needed in the future.

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