How and how often do you back up projects

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ComputerArt.Club
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How and how often do you back up projects

#1 Post by ComputerArt.Club » Fri May 04, 2018 10:09 am

How and how often do you back up projects, particularly in progress projects.
Do you keep multiple versions of the same game or just the most recent version?
Do you back up to the cloud or some other way?
Do you back up the script files and assets separately or everything together?
How do you organise the backups if you are doing multiple versions?

Usually for most other types of projects (video, art, etc.) I have multiple versions of everything and I keep every version of every update... but that is a little more complicated for Renpy given the problems multiple script files can cause and that the code is looking for a specific file name.

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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#2 Post by Empish » Fri May 04, 2018 10:15 am

For my tutorial stuff, I usually don't bother with backups, because it's relatively short, simple and is often posted online in some fashion or other.

But for my own work or commission work, I usually use various online drives, be they gdocs or dropbox to contain snapshots and/or deliverables. Once I have a few updates past that point, I delete the older backups unless I think they're important. I think if you're concerned about updates in place, you can start using git/github for your renpy projects as it'll allow you to check out whatever commit or branch you want.

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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#3 Post by Mutive » Fri May 04, 2018 10:32 am

I dump it into Dropbox every week (if not more frequently). It just seems prudent.

I do a bit of versioning, especially if I know I'm making a big enough change to the programming that it may take a while either to undo or fix all the bugs. (I tend to store these on my Google Drive. Not sure why I use different storage services, but eh.)
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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#4 Post by Rastagong » Sat May 05, 2018 5:48 pm

i use a dedicated version control software! (Like almost everyone, I use git.)
It doesn't seem very common among writers to use this kind of solution, and it's definitely not very accessible if you're not used to it at first… but it really makes VN development and writing safer.

As long as I remember to commit my work regularly, I know I can restore any piece of code I wrote at some point, any sprite I used but later deleted, no matter how far in the past. In a lot of ways it makes experimentation easier, because I know I can always revert my mistakes.
Having a remote repository (usually on Github or Bitbucket), is also very useful both because it's a backup in and of itself and because it really makes version comparison easier.

I think I've seen a few projects aimed at democratising git for writers, and I'm not sure if that's the way to go, but I hope people consider this solution at all in some way!
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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#5 Post by ComputerArt.Club » Sun May 06, 2018 3:06 am

Rastagong wrote:
Sat May 05, 2018 5:48 pm
i use a dedicated version control software! (Like almost everyone, I use git.)
It doesn't seem very common among writers to use this kind of solution, and it's definitely not very accessible if you're not used to it at first… but it really makes VN development and writing safer.

As long as I remember to commit my work regularly, I know I can restore any piece of code I wrote at some point, any sprite I used but later deleted, no matter how far in the past. In a lot of ways it makes experimentation easier, because I know I can always revert my mistakes.
Having a remote repository (usually on Github or Bitbucket), is also very useful both because it's a backup in and of itself and because it really makes version comparison easier.

I think I've seen a few projects aimed at democratising git for writers, and I'm not sure if that's the way to go, but I hope people consider this solution at all in some way!
Thanks for this, I might give this a go. Hmm, I now have lots of questions about this software. I expect I'll need to do a bit of Googling.

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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#6 Post by Rastagong » Sun May 06, 2018 3:56 am

ComputerArt.Club wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 3:06 am
Thanks for this, I might give this a go. Hmm, I now have lots of questions about this software. I expect I'll need to do a bit of Googling.
It can... definitely be tricky to learn. Even among regular users, it's common not to know all of the features of git, because it's such a vast collection of tools. I definitely stick with a few regular commands, and google a lot whenever I get into more fringe cases.

Bitbucket offers a beginner tutorial here! And if you find using the command line too difficult, on Windows at least, git offers a graphical interface in the package too. There may be interfaces on other platforms too!
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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#7 Post by mikolajspy » Sun May 06, 2018 6:58 am

I'm syncing my entire "RenPy Projects" folder to Google Drive.
From time to time, mostly after major improvement, I also copy the files to several external drives, just in case.
I assume my projects are only getting better and I will never have need to revert some changes :P

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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#8 Post by Mammon » Sun May 06, 2018 7:54 am

I SHOULD back up my work every time after I worked on something. It would be real convenient if I'd do that... What I do is backing up my project whenever I think of it and realise I haven't done it in a while. This thread will be my reminder to do it right now, and then there might be a while until I think of it again. I use some online place like dropbox and put my work on an usb stick as two backups. Whever I do something like remove a big part of a sprite or writing, for example if I don't like the head and want to make a new one, I always save the current under a different name and throw it into a map labelled old so that it's not gone forever.
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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#9 Post by IronForPistons » Sun May 06, 2018 1:55 pm

I also use Git, backed up to Bitbucket. Personally, I find the command line for Git to be unwieldy, so I use SourceTree for Git commands. In my experience, SourceTree is really easy to use once you understand how Git works. Like Rastagong, I highly recommend BitBucket's Git tutorials for getting started.
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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#10 Post by Fuseblower » Sun May 06, 2018 2:13 pm

Well, I do the same stuff the others do here, putting stuff on external drive and on my site but I also have this really handy little USB memory stick on my key ring. This way I'm always carrying my projects with me.

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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#11 Post by Imperf3kt » Sun May 06, 2018 5:14 pm

I have several TB of free space across several hard drives and a couple of SSDs and about ten disused flash drives.

So my solutiin is simple enough: every time I've completed a feature I was working on, I'll make two or three copies and put them on a different storage drive.
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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#12 Post by kivik » Mon May 07, 2018 3:32 pm

Another git user here. I used to use GitHub starting out until I wanted private repos and switched to my own private servers. I may have to check out BitBucket though, it sounds like it's ideal for me!

My setup involves my /game folder being synced to a cloud drive automatically. I commit (not often enough) when I feel I'm in a good place, which is rarely since I'm always doing 2 or 3 things at once!

I use rsync to two different locations as well: one when my code is stable after I've done some major testing, it's sync to another cloud drive. The other rsync is to my "build" folder where I exclude the git files, as well as my dev_test folder, where I put scripts that my label_start skips to - this way I won't have to remember to restore the game flow to normal play.

Once I've built a distribution, I upload them to my cloud drive as well per build version. This means I essentially have a backup of every stable version of my game - because let's face it, it's not hard to extract and decompile the code back.

So all in all I have:
- 1 x git repo
- 1 x live cloud sync
- 1 x stable cloud sync
- 1 x stable local build minus test codes
- All stable builds

That's 3 local copies, 3 remote copies (git + 2 cloud), and numerous distribution builds.

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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#13 Post by MI_Buddy » Sat Jul 14, 2018 7:03 pm

I'm going to echo Git and Sourcetree, and also mention a case I haven't heard yet where using Git is incredibly helpful:

If you're collaborating on a project, it's way easier for everyone to connect to the project stored on the server then to share whole copies of the project back and forth, especially as it increases in size.

In the (probably) rare case you're working with someone with limited bandwidth as well, this can be a lifesaver working together. I did this with someone who had limited data, and it worked great for us both, because when you get updates from a remote Git repository (which is basically just your project stored in the cloud) you only download the updates, not the whole project all over again.

I have a short file talking about Git definitions and stuff to hopefully demystify it if it sounds scary to anyone here, it used to scare me but I'm so glad I got into it and strongly recommend it for backups and tracking: file here

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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#14 Post by Saithir » Mon Jul 16, 2018 1:47 am

Contrary to everyone else I use GitLab instead of Bitbucket, not sure why, there was probably something I didn't like about Bitbucket in the past, I don't really remember now. Doesn't really matter, as the principle is the same and they too have free private repositories.
MI_Buddy wrote:
Sat Jul 14, 2018 7:03 pm
If you're collaborating on a project, it's way easier for everyone to connect to the project stored on the server then to share whole copies of the project back and forth, especially as it increases in size.
That is true, but it's not the main reason of using any source control with multiple people working on one project.

You can work on the same file at the same time as someone else, and (within reason) git will help you merge both sets of changes into one file.

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Re: How and how often do you back up projects

#15 Post by MI_Buddy » Mon Jul 16, 2018 10:48 am

@Saithir True, totally forgot to mention that! Most projects around just have 1 programmer, but you can still have your writer and programmer have at the same code and update it simultaneously, which is super-awesome.

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