How to Keep your DJ Library Safe for Ten Bucks Per Month

I’ve been through countless revisions of music backup routines as a D.J. who also happens to be the owner and head geek of an I.T. company. Read below to find out EXACTLY how I protect myself from losing my Serato and itunes libraries for less than the price of an import 12″

Going all the way back to “I’ll occasionally (translation: never) remember to plug in my backup drive and start a backup, to waiting forever for Time Machine backups to complete before finding out they were “corrupt” and had to be redone to….well, no backup at all for way-too-long stretches of time.

At this point I’ve settled on a couple truths about myself

  1. A backup will only be successful if it’s 100% automatic.
  2. It needs to be easy to to get this library back exactly as I have in the shortest possible time.
  3. I won’t store my library or my primary backup on an SD card or USB drive.
  4. My music needs to be accessible and browsable in the cloud, from anywhere
  5. The solution needs to support iTunes & Serato
  6. I hate Time Machine because it’s slow and buggy.
  7. I’ll only feel safe if my music is backed up in two different places: to the cloud, and also on another computer or network drive that I physically own.
  8. I need to be able to see what my entire collection looked like as a “snapshot” at any point previous point in time.

Awesomely enough, it’s not that hard or that expensive to build a solution that covers all of that — especially if you compare that labor & cost to the inevitable wild-eyed-crying-panic-attack you’ll have when you realize you left your hard drive on the train. or your dog pees on your laptop. or your computer boots up with a question mark and you realize your hard drive is fried. or whatever, I’m sure you’ve got some good stories…every music fan does.

I’m writing this post specifically for the Serato DJ’s I know, but this advice holds more or less true for almost any type of DJ or music fan who happens to be reading this post.

And remember, this is just the way I do it. There’s plenty of other articles from DJ sites (I even referenced some below) that talk about a pretty similar methods, but they won’t tell you EXACTLY how to use a Dropbox account and another always-on computer (or a cheap network drive) that will always have an update version (as well as point-in-time snapshots )of your entire music library.

  1. get a paid dropbox account via link: ($10/month. Or see Google drive or other perhaps cheaper / easier / more complicated / just do it the way I do)
  2. install dropbox on your computer
  3. determine the location of all things that need to be backup up (generally the user/music folder but instructions how to verify
  4. use to sync the Music folder (or whichever as from 3 above to get your library with.
  5. Leave your computer plugged in and powered on overnight — depending where you are in the world you might finish in a night (or it might take a few weeks if you’re in the bush somewhere) but most of your should be done within a few days — you’ll know when your music folder has a nice green checkmark on it.
  6. Now, your entire library is stored in Dropbox, safe and sound. You can browse the song files right on Dropbox, just like the files & folders are on your P.C. — which means any computer you download this to can become your new DJ library with minimal config required.
  7. Now for the fun part. Either find an spare laptop or computer with an external drive connected. Or even better, spend $500 and get a wifi-enabled network drive. And sign into Dropbox on that second device as well. Now, every time you make any change to your iTunes or Serato library, as long as you are connected to wifi those changes will upload to Dropbox, then immediately download to the onsite backup device which is sitting happily in your house while you frolic around the city or world or wherever in the world your music takes yoi.
  8. If you get a new computer, just log into Dropbox, Use macdroptoany to sync your music folder to the system location, and open up itunes / Serato and you’re good to go. Alternately, you can just copy/sync/clone the onsite backup directly onto an SD or USB or external drive or anywhere you need it to get yourself going again. and if you need to see point in time version of your library, can restore the folder from various points in time right out of dropbox (instructions link)

There, now  you’ve got a Disaster Recovery Plan for your D.J/Music life. Congratulation 🙂



What to buy for a cheap network drive setup

  • Wireless Adapter:

About Google Backup & Sync, allows you to use Google Drive instead

alternative google, use backup & sync instead :

“Backup and Sync is an app for Mac and PC that backs up files and photos safely in Google Drive and Google Photos, so they’re no longer trapped on your computer and other devices. Just choose the folders you want to back up, and we’ll take care of the rest.”

Other post with videos etc

Backing Up Your Digital DJ Data

Flimsy Bank Policies Put Your Financial Info at Risk

Many Americans put their money in the bank as a method of keeping it safe and secure. Most do not realize, though, that one policy employed by financial institutions which is meant to protect them could actually be putting their sensitive financial information at risk. In fact, according to the Cyber Forensic Research and Education Group at the University of New Haven, most financial institutions have less stringent password requirements than other types of businesses including social media sites.


Research Group Surprised by Results

The research group looked at the password policies of 17 banks. Of those, the group raised concerns about the password policies of six. It found that the password requirements of some of the country’s largest banks — including Wells Fargo, BB&T Corp., Citibank, Chase, Capital One and Webster First Federal Credit Union — had flimsy policies that did not require industry standards. These six financial institutions represent about 350 million accounts — a staggering number considering the vulnerability of the information.

What Makes These Policies Weak?

What the research group — which was made up of five undergraduates — discovered is that the above-mentioned banks did not differentiate between upper and lower case letters when it comes to their account holders’ passwords. That is, they did not require that the passwords be case sensitive. A cyber security expert and assistant professor at the University of New Haven, Frank Breitlinger, noted that the failure of banks to support case sensitive passwords is both surprising and troubling. He pointed out that many people naturally use both types of letters when they are formulating their passwords. Because banks do not take the simple step of supporting these efforts within their passwords, the security of their account holders’ financial information is significantly reduced.

Another Troubling Discovery

Not only did the research group discover that these financial institutions do not support using case-sensitive passwords, they did not make the experience of reporting security issues user-friendly. Many of them had no listed phone numbers or email addresses to report a troubling security problem. Instead, researchers notified these banks by using their phone hotlines. Representatives for the banks that were reached on these hotlines didn’t seem to understand how to handle the researchers’ concerns or the potential for severe security issues. In addition, they did not notify their in-house IT or security department or seem to understand the need to do so.

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Apple or PC for Law Offices?

Windows long dominated as a popular operating system for law firms. Yet, as Mac gained in market share over the decades, an increasing number of law firms have switched from a PC to a Mac for their practices.

Computer Law Firms

For much of the time, the assumption was that Windows was superior for a business environment for several reasons:

  • The necessary software running on the company computers would work only for PCs
  • PCs were much more cost-effective
  • Computers running Windows couldn’t “communicate” with Macs on the same network
  • Parts for PCs were more readily available for repairs and upgrades

Currently, Mac has gained on the PC advantages, and law firms are reconsidering. Here are some reasons I think that the advantages are now about even.


Attorneys today typically utilize the following software programs:

  • Practice management software such as MyCase or Clio
  • Microsoft Word and Excel
  • Dropbox or Google Drive
  • Google Apps
  • Adobe Acrobat or other related PDF software programs

Each of these programs or apps is available across both platforms.

PCs and Macs can both run Adobe Acrobat and Microsoft Office, and cross-compatibility issues have been eliminated between the operating systems, although older versions may continue to be incompatible.

In addition, practice management software was usually supported on Windows servers with onsite hosting. This remains a common practice for large law firms; however, cloud-based software has become a valuable resource for solo and small law practices due to its ease of maintenance and cost-efficiency.

The remaining programs are cloud-based, which means that any type of device or computer can access and use it. The computational processing provided by cloud-based software is not accomplished by your device, PC or Mac. It is processed by servers elsewhere programmed to recognize and respond to different operating systems.

IT for Both

Although it may be enticing to reduce costs by eliminating the IT support service you have once you move to the cloud or switch from PC to Mac or vice versa, it remains a solid idea to keep an IT service provider on call. Today, your staff has a multitude of devices and operating systems, and you need a provider proficient in all of them.

Network Communications

Designing, building and maintaining an in-house server can be far too difficult for solo and small law practices. The cost of overhead is high especially in relation to the available alternatives.

In addition, having an in-house server to manage emails and documents requires using a sole operating system, which the cloud eliminates. For solo and small practices, sharing documents over a network is facilitated easily via the cloud using Box, Dropbox, or Google Drive. Generally, the hassles are fewer, and you have no equipment to repair or maintain. You can access your files from any type of device, mobile device, smartphone, tablet, PC, or Mac.

Cost and Parts

PCs do have one advantage still over Macs in the cost area. Many computer manufacturers make devices that use the Windows operating system while Apple still makes devices that use only the Apple proprietary operating system. Plus, Apple computers come at a premium price, and some experts might argue that some of the cost is due to cache.

Does it Matter Anymore?

Pertaining to functionality, it probably does not matter today whether your law firm uses a PC or Mac. Sharing documents and contest over differing operating systems is seamless today. You can create professional declarations and other pleadings for court just as easily on a Mac as a PC, and you can share those documents online with colleagues or clients without worrying about cross-compatibility. Most software is currently available for both platforms.

The best answer may be to simply choose which works best for your law firm and staff.

Healthcare Leadership Council Convened to Improve Healthcare

The Healthcare Leadership Council met and developed six recommendations that should be implemented to improve the healthcare system in America. The HLC shared their recommendations during a Capitol Hill briefing. The recommended changes include:

  • Setting December 31, 2018 as the deadline for nationwide health information interoperability. The various medical agencies should be able to easily share pertinent data with each other.
  • Making it easier for the Food and Drug Administration to bring life-saving treatments and technologies to patients. This means reducing redundancy and counter-productive regulations within the FDA.
  • Improving aspects of the care for chronically ill patients through cooperation between Medicare, insurance providers and healthcare providers. It was stated that over half of the medications that chronically ill patients take are taken incorrectly.
  • Updating the physician self-referral and anti-kickback statutes to better protect against fraud and abuse.
  • Improvements to and standardization of the federal and state privacy laws to combat confusion and counterproductive restrictions while maintaining the PHI of patients.
  • Improvements to the Enhanced Medication Therapy Management model to realize the outcome of improving patient’s health.

The recommendations are further explained in the 66-page document that was prepared by the NORC at the University of Chicago. The recommendations have been developed over several months through an open dialogue with senior leaders from various healthcare sectors, key industry voices, and select patient groups.


The HLC has been discussing the recommendations with various congressional leaders and will continue to do so in the coming weeks.

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