Oh my god. It’s here. Your USB drive has arrived, and it’s like a tiny brick of GOLD. Moments that will never happen again, memories that are already starting to fade, faces you may never see again. They’re all on this stick, this feat of modern technology. Your entire wedding day, sitting in the palm of your hand. We must cherish it, forever!
When it comes to looking after your Wedding Film, there are several things you can do to make sure you never lose it:
1. Back up
USB drives are pretty incredible. But they’re not indestructible. They can be broken, they can get lost, and they can also randomly decide to stop working. The only way to guard against this is to back up your files. This is the first thing you should be doing when you’ve received your USB (after watching your films, of course). Copy the files to your computer, copy them to another hard drive or USB drive, upload them online to Google Drive or Dropbox or something similar. Whatever you do, just make sure that USB is not the only copy you have.
2. Store it well
It probably goes without saying that you should keep your USB drive somewhere safe. But what does that mean?
First of all, it means somewhere you can remember. This tiny treasure can easily become lost, especially when you’re two children and a new house down the line, and you don’t even own the chest of drawers you used to keep it in.
Secondly, this means storing it somewhere where it’s not going to be damaged by water or extreme temperatures (yes, that does mean that the fridge/oven/garden are not ideal places). Likewise, it doesn’t need to be stored in a safe guarded by alsatians – just keep it in a drawer or a cupboard somewhere.
Oh, and keep the lid on too – this protects the USB connector from getting damaged or from getting dust inside, which can stop your computer from being able to read it.
3. Use it properly!
I know you’re eager to watch. You’re just seconds away from being able to cringe at footage of your own two left feet. But slow down.
Using a USB drive properly means making sure your computer is booted up and logged in before you plug in the USB. Apparently, plugging it in beforehand can risk an electric surge or shock to the USB drive, which wouldn’t be ideal. So wait before you plug it in, and then wait again before you unplug it! Don’t just yank it out to throw back in the fridge cupboard. You’re supposed to ‘Eject’ it first. This is done by right clicking and selecting ‘Eject’ or ‘Safely remove’. On Windows, you’ll then be told when it’s safe to remove, whilst on a Mac the drive will simply disappear from your Finder window and you can then unplug it.
So there you have it: three steps to preserve your wedding film. Of course, after the first point, not much else matters, because you’ll have it backed up (hopefully more than once). Nevertheless, if you do happen to forget to back up, and your safe-guarding alsatians have an off-day, bear in mind that I keep all files for one year after the date of your wedding. This means that at any point before your first wedding anniversary, I can always send you another USB drive at a small cost.