QUESTION: If an external hard drive of referenced original Aperture files fails, can one reconnect images to the files backed up during import to a different external hard drive?
Does it matter if one moves the backups done during import from one hard drive to a different hard drive?
I have them in several places and would like to centralize them in a single place.
I have my Aperture library on my Macbook Pro. My most recent projects are managed. The rest of my originals I have relocated to referenced on an external hard drive. I keep an updated clone of that hard drive in a separate location. I use vault to backup the library. Is this sufficient backup?
ANSWER: You have a lot of questions here, but they all boil down to managing your referenced files.
For those not familiar with the term, referenced files are the Masters (often RAWs) associated with the previews in the Aperture library. Referenced files almost always live on an external hard drive.
You can reconnect an Aperture library to a backed up set of referenced files. If you've maintained the same file structure and naming convention for the folders and files, all you have to do is use File > Locate Referenced Files. If you reconnect one file, the rest in the folder will follow suit automatically. Here's an article I wrote about this process.
As a side note, when I use the automatic backup feature on import in Aperture, I select "Project Name" for the subfolder option. This keeps everything nice and tidy, and makes it easy to match up files in your Aperture Library with masters on external drives.