If you are an apple head…I’m sure there is an equivalent but I’ve never bitten the apple so I can’t tell you what it is. Ok. Snipping tool is easy. For creating your web site you will want to have your web development app open and then another web site. Most browsers let you use tabs. This first creation will take some time and I will tell you is my least favorite part but if you spend the time, you will save so much time in the future it will be worth it. So…open the snipping tool. It is easy to use. Go to the web site of the company you want. I usually navigate to the login page. Then use snipping tool and select the area around the logo. Cut. Then click the save button and save it to a directory. I created a directory just for logos. Put them all in the same place. Make it easy on yourself.
I don’t scan them in. I don’t save them. I don’t care about them other than reconciling them to Quicken. I struggled with this one as it was a piece of paper and that means data and I don’t delete data. But I reasoned it thus. I checked all my vendors, banks, creditors etc. They all with a few exceptions had statements on line available to me for 7 years. A few did not. Those few weren’t important enough for me to care. I figure these guys got skin in the game and they care more about my statements being kept and backed up than I did. After all if they lose the information then I don’t really owe them anything do I? And since both my husband and I both at one time worked in the IT department of a few banks we know these guys got backups of their backups of their backups of their backups and they don’t just throw the NAS drive out the window in case of fire they have entire data centers off site sitting there just waiting for a fire so they can operate from them. So why waste my time, my bites, etc. to store what they care more about storing. Once I reconcile a statement I toss it. These days since it’s all digital I don’t ever even see the paper. Email notification of a statement. On Monday I process whatever statements are in my email folder for statements (which is all auto sorted for me by Office365 and a few Outlook rules) and I reconcile the ones that are there and I actually delete those emails. Probably the only emails I delete. So now I’ve got the original statement stored at the bank, credit card, utility company site and another one stored at Finovera.
Finovera is a great product that is still struggling but seems to keep trying. Their competitor gave up decided it was too difficult and they had a great product. I for get their name but Finovera stepped in and is still trying. Basically you open a Finovera account. Again this is FREE. And you tell it who you do business with and they have almost everyone I used to do business with except like the City water department and some odd things here and there. You set up your accounts with login and password and grant them access to your account. So far I’ve used them a few years never seen any data breaches. They login to your accounts and retrieve your statements for you. So instead of logging into 7 different credit cards I login to Finovera. On the dashboard it tells me what’s going on. Sometimes things need to be adjusted as companies change things. If an account isn’t working you’ll notice as it has a red line and says it needs attention. If things are working right then on the right side you will have a list of bills you need to pay. It tells you when things are due and how much you need to pay. It downloads the statements for you and stores them so all those statements are all saved and easy to be accessed without having to login to the individual company. They even are set up to let you pay your bills through them. I think there may be fees with that. I’ve never used them. I have everything set up for auto pay since I’m on the road I don’t want to worry about missing a deadline. About every other week I login to Finovera look for new statements which are listed on the right side and reconcile my accounts in Quicken. Delete the action items when they’re done. If an account needs attention I fix the problem. Sadly they keep having problems due to businesses constantly changing. That’s what killed their competitor but these guys haven’t quit yet so I’m not quitting on them. I like having statements saved for me.
Yep..I have a directory on the NAS called Movies and it is every DVD we ever purchased. Now I did also sign up with Vudu and they used to do $1 convert your DVDs to digital through Walmart. You download their software. Took me a few days. I would put a disk in it reads the disk if it has an agreement with that movie company then it adds it to your video queue with Vudu. I did this with over 400 movies we owned and at time about half were in their system. I haven’t done in since we went on the road because I can’t stream as easily. So the rest of the DVDs that weren’t Vudu’d we copied (for backup purposes only) so that we could view them in the RV without having to carry around all those DVD boxes. Try putting 6 kids 4 cats, 2 dogs and a mom into a 38’ x 8’ space and everything you need to live. There just is no room for DVDs. Although we did used to carry the entire collection of Star Trek Next Generation, Voyager, Deep Space 9 and Enterprise. We finally got those copied off. So that NAS drive. It takes up the same amount of space no matter how much we put on it and it has included in it a streaming video server. DLNA is the proper term for it but basically any kid with a PC or a tablet in our RV when the NAS is on can pull up any video we have in our video library and play it and our wonderful Samsung 48” K4 tv which isn’t our 78” curved 4K but still has a great picture can stream anything from that NAS as well so we can have movie nights when there is on internet and watch some of our favorites.
Both exactly the same. And that GoodSync program. One thing it does is every night it takes everything from the NAS and it copies it to One Passport drive called Primary. And on other nights it takes everything on the NAS and it copies it to one Passport drive called Secondary. So every stinking bite of data is in this RV in at least 3 locations. Why? Well RVs are precarious things. I’ve heard horror stories of them catching fire and you having seconds to get out before there is nothing left. Although the NAS sits in front of the emergency exit window and I have told the kids in case of fire pick up the NAS throw it out first then climb out the reality is anything could happen. When we leave the RV for more than running to the grocery store I will grab the Primary USB and throw it into my bag with my little Surface Pro laptop. That’s it. Everything I could possibly need in a tiny little space. Why don’t’ I just use the passport drives instead of a NAS? SPEED. Those things are dog slow. If you knew our old fat dog Scout you’d understand. They are fine for backup in emergency and occasional use but they aren’t built for lots of data moving and they definitely aren’t built for sharing. With the NAS the kids can all be getting school work off it at the same time, I can be editing videos stored on it and someone could be streaming a video off it and none of us will see much speed degredation. But those little passport drives. They are just slow. So for now our videos are the only thing that we could lose if the RV burst into flames and we couldn’t get anything out and only some of them haven’t made it up to Amazon drive yet.
Remember MultiCloud? CloudHQ is the other part (not at all related company) but you need two things. You need to be able to see all your clouds and manage them manually and that’s MultiCloud but you also need to be able to make things work for you without you doing anything and that’s CloudHQ. Cloud HQ lets you link to all those clouds. They have a free service that does most of the personal cloud sites and they have a paid account which lets you use Office365 Dropbox Professional and other business type things. It’s affordable. I will disclose again they are the only ones who give me any benefit for mentioning them and they will give you a 1 year business account for blogging about how great they are. But I’d do that anyway because they are. I set up all my accounts in CloudHQ one time. I set up a sync. Again like GoodSync for my PC it does the same thing but in the cloud. Here’s why this is important. On Multicloud which I love in order to move data I drag and drop it or click move and you can see down in the little window at the bottom it is moving things and I believe it will use up data on my PC to make that move. I might be wrong here but I believe if I log out it will stop that action and not complete it. I must be signed in to actively do anything. And there are times I want to see all my files and search them them and MultiCloud is fantastic for that. But there are times I just want things being moved and I don’t want to spend time doing it, I want it automatic and I want it done without using my precious internet data. Like GoodSync you can set up one way syncs or two way syncs. So think backup or keep both copies exactly the same. You can decide for each sync if files should be deleted or over written and whether or not backup copies should be kept as files change.
I have CloudHQ set up to take Drop box and sync it with Amazon Cloud. Those are actually real time synced. If one changes the other updates. I also have google drive set to back up to Amazon drive. It took maybe 15 minutes of work to set up the accounts and set up the syncs and then it just runs every day all by itself. Every cloud drive I use is backed up to Amazon drive by CloudHQ and I never spend any time with it. Now my files are in one location that I choose based on what it is and then it is on my NAS drive so I can access it if we have no internet and my NAS drive backs up with GoodSync nightly when we have internet and keeps things backed up to Amazon and my photos are backed up on google and OneDrive and Amazon cloud and well you can see that I have everything stored in at least 2 cloud places and the NAS so short of an EMP being set off and rending technology useless I should theoretically never lose anything.
GoodSync comes into play again here because I have jobs set up that kick off on different days so that my PC isn’t running all night long. I already mentioned the job that moves the OneDrive photos to the NAS drive photo directory for the month. That one actually deletes the original after it copies. I can tell quickly if it’s working because my camera directory on OneDrive is empty. I also use it to backup my Google drive. Yep..I have a job set up that daily takes the gdrive folder on my pc and copies it to the gdrive folder on my NAS. Since those are my most often changed files I wanted them backed up to the NAS in case my PC failed. Since we are mobile I don’t have internet every day. When we’re in Canada I get very little internet so all our internet backups are delayed. If my PC were to crash on a day that I haven’t had internet access then I would lose any changes I made to my most often changed files stored on Google Drive. So GoodSync every day just makes a copy to the NAS. It is not allowed to delete any files in case I accidentally deleted something and it will overwrite older files with newer ones. It runs automated in the background unattended. I do nothing but make sure my PC is turned on for the day. It logs me in if I’m not logged in.
In addition to copying the google drive it then does a serious of different jobs on different days. I figured out it was better to break things down to smaller jobs rather than running just 3 jobs which could do everything I need. GoodSync runs an analysis of the two directories to be synced. The analysis can be time consuming if you have a lot of files or a lot of directories. Remember my categories earlier? You can use that to make the jobs smaller and work more efficiently.
This isn’t all the jobs I have set up but it gives you an idea of what you can do. GoodSync is the ONE company I’ve found that can sync to Amazon Cloud. Remember that UNLIMITED storage I get every year for $59.99? Yep..I use it to back up everything on my NAS drive. And since GoodSync only tries to sync what has changed. After the initial set up and the initial sync it is a small job to run nightly. I have one job to backup my Google drive to Amazon Drive. I have one that backs up my Public directory to Amazon Drive (that’s where those root categories of Home Management, Finances, etc. are stored), I have one that backs up my pictures directory to Amazon Drive, I have one that backs up my Videos direcotires to Amazon Drive. Now that one still hasn’t finished. I let it run every week and those video files are quite large so it has never finished it’s initial sync. It will get there eventually. When it does then it will only need to upload new videos added that week. It’s getting closer but again we are on limimted cell phone data plan internet so I don’t have the 100Gbps I used to have in the b&s. (Man my b&s had it’s advantages!) So basically any directory I have on my NAS or on my PC that is important gets backed up again automatically at night while I sleep to my Amazon Drive. GoodSync is smart. It adds directories it needs and it maintains the structure I set up so it makes my AmazonDrive cloud look fantastic!
YouTube is about the only free thing I’ve found so far. Unfortunately the YouTube upload is painful to me. It works but it’s not fast. I’ve decided the best thing to do is break videos down into smaller videos. So I took the time to take all those old home movies and I used a USB transfer adapter for my old Hi8 video camcorder and I sat there and let it run for weeks putting one tape after another in and copying off those old tapes. The videos are all on the NAS but they still aren’t finished editing. This is the last job and the longest and the one I’m not the most qualified to do but it will get done. So far we’re up to 2008 on old home videos. What I decided to do was use an editor I’ve tried several and I’m not the best qualified to tell you which one is best. I’ve tried the Cyberlink products and I’m currenting using them and I’ve had the Pinnacle products. To me they all work about the same but I was having some serious issues with Pinnacle crashing so I switched to Cyberlink stuff. None are cheap. There may be some free editors but the ones I’ve tried have never been worth the trouble. So I’ll open one of the large video file and begin slicing it up. For us it’s usually birthday, birthday, some kid activity, maybe a sport depending on the year, birthday, birthday, Christmas. So it’s pretty simple. I clip it for each thing and I’m not the video person I’d say publish it but I think they call it something else. I save them all as MP4 because that seems to be the standard and then you have to decide the quality. I think I chose the 2K. I was doing the 4K when we were at home because I upscales and does a lot to those old videos without me knowing how to fix them and on our Samsung 78” Curved 4K television those old videos looked amazing in 4K. But now that we’re mobile and uploading a 4K video is a bit more challenging I opted for the 2K and the kids will just have to suffer. At least they aren’t getting old real to real projections with no sound. When I upload to YouTube I tag the video for the kids. Year, month, who was in it and what it was and where. Hopefully some day they will appreciate that all their home videos are on YouTube and they can share them with their family. I have them all blocked for private right now. I’d like to find another video thing but again video is not my thing so that was the best I could do and new tvs these days have YouTube built in so it seemed like the best option and I haven’t seen any limits on how many videos you can have or any Gb maximum so I’m hoping it stays that way. If something better comes along we’ll try it.
Now videos getting backed up somewhere else is still one of my challenges. Where?
Another FREE item you can download from Google. Again it’s not perfect but it’s pretty good. I open it manually at the beginning of every month. It goes out and gets all the new photos that I have taken that were moved to my NAS drive without me doing anything but snapping the picture. I do like to tag my photos. Not sure if it’s worth the time and trouble but I at least tag them with the year and the month and let it to it’s face recognition and let it automatically tag the kids faces. It does a fantastic job of automatically finding matching faces. Even with 6 kids who at various stages of life sometimes look a lot a like I am forever impressed with how I can tag my daughter as an infant and it can find that child’s face even at 16! Sometimes I have to tag a few of the photos and I ignore strangers or extended relatives. I pretty much only tag my kids and my parents. Other than Aunt Sue. Aunt Sue got tagged last year when she went to Alaska with us so she’s that exception to my rule. Once it reads in all the photos and I tag anything I want to tag. I do like to tag locations at least state or country so I can find them easily. I have Picasa set to store the tag in the file. Now I’m NOT the photo expert. I do let my phone save location data to the photos. There’s tons of info available you can see in Picasa it has a decent editor but I don’t spend much time with it. For me it’s a simple way to see all my photos in one place and browse them through. Sort of a scrapbook without all the effort. But then I do one more thing with Picasa. I click on the last month’s directory and I click UPLOAD and I upload it to google photos. Again set it to the FREE size which is smaller. But when it uploads it uploads the photos to an ALBUM which is titled for the directory. Remember my naming structure 2016 07 July was the last one I just did. So now I can go to Google photos online or on my phone and pull up that album and see all the photos for the month not just see photos by day they were taken. So now I’ve probably got two copies of the same photo stored at Google but that’s ok. I don’t care because…It’s FREE! It’s easy and it’s sorted my way so I can find things. The first backup from the phone was just in case my phone was lost damaged or stolen before I got my photos moved. I never intended it to be permanent but I don’t like how Google organizes daily photos. I prefer my way so I’ve got redundant redundancy again and it cost me very little time at all. If I didn’t tag anything it would seriously be about 3 clicks to get it set to upload once a month. Simple. Cheap…
I tried Free File Sync and it’s good too but I liked Good Sync better. Interface was just better and it can be set to automatic. So. Remember the OneDrive temporary photos. GoodSync will sync things for me when I set them up. I can do either one sided back up type syncing or two sided actual keep things in sync. I can choose whether missing files are added or whether removed files should be deleted.
I set up one GoodSync job to take all the photos from my OneDrive photos folder where my camera uploaded them to the cloud and the cloud downloaded them to the OneDrive folder. Now GoodSync runs daily and says…is there anything in that drive? Ah I see that. And each month I change the location. I have a end of month routine that takes me maybe 15 minutes to do to make sure everything is working and setup. I should explain that I store my photos by the following. Directory for the year. Under the year directory 12 directories one for each month. At first I just did 01 – 12 but I found with Google that it was better to do say 2016 08 August. A little redundant but once you start uploading to google you’ll find out why. Searching… Trust me having the year and the date is easier. Why not just have all years and all dates in one directory not the sub directory? Because I hate seeing a bazillion directories. I’d rather click on 2016 click on 2016 08 August. Why 08 and August? Because I don’t want to think 08…..um…August. 08 for sorting because if you do January February, then things are not in chronological order. Many years of data analysis has taught me some things you just should do even if they look redundant.