My Photo Backup Solution

A few friends have asked about how we handle our family’s photo safety. Since I have two kids, a wife and a DSLR, we naturally have TONS of photos. If anything were to happen to those photos, you know who would take the full blame of the loss! This is the system we’ve come up with.

The Inputs

  • My iPhone
  • My Wife’s iPhone
  • The family DSLR

(Since we are both on iPhones, we make use of the Apple ecosystem. If you have an Android, Blackberry, PalmOS, WindowsCE device, YMMV.)


We each run on our MacBooks. We do this so our iCloud Photo Library will automatically sync and download to the MacBook. DSLR photos are downloaded to on my wife’s machine. (I wish we could put both photo libraries on one machine, but I haven’t found a way to get iCloud Photos to sync to two different accounts and iPhoto libraries)


iCloud: Both my wife’s phone and my phone are using iCloud Photo Library. We aren’t using the same account though. They are tied to our iTunes accounts. The bad thing about that is, we don’t have access to each other’s photos. We also pay the extra space fee on both of our devices (which stinks because the $2.99 plan on hers would easily cover the $0.99 one on mine). The good thing is that our photos are almost instantly backed up to all our devices. (

Google Photos: I’ve also installed Google Photos on our phones and laptops. We’ve chosen the free unlimited size plan that downscales your photos a bit. I figured this was acceptable as a redundancy solution. Better to have a lower quality photo than no photo at all. (

Shoebox: I just recently started using them as yet another redundancy option. It works the same as Google Photos. I just have the app on our phones automatically upload as new shots come in. (

Backblaze: In addition to an online photo service, we also backup our MacBooks via Backblaze. Backblaze creates online disk images of your machines and allows you to restore them or even have a thumb drive mailed to you if the machine dies. This backs up our local iPhoto libraries. (

Hope this helps out! Would love to hear your comments or concerns about our setup. Also, if you know how to get two iCloud accounts syncing to one iPhoto library, let me know!