I found the responses to @bluebones’s post about backing up really helpful — I hadn’t considered using tools like
git to backup my projects, instead I’ve just been (inelegantly) copying my entire project directories onto a cloud folder.
But the posts there don’t really address which files in the project directory to backup when you’re creating a backup.* So my question is: When I’m backing up an Ardour project, should I always backup (copy) the entire project directory? I see two potential problems with this solution:
One the one hand, maybe it’s too much to copy — project directories seem to contain files/data unnecessary for my backup purposes: e.g. I don’t think I need the
dead sounds/folder for my backups, and perhaps the
interchange/folder consists of unused samples/audio that I don’t need, and make my overall project directory bulky?
On the other hand, maybe it’s not enough to copy — perhaps there are some audio or MIDI files used by the project that aren’t copied into the
interchange/folder? (e.g. Does Ardour copy all imported audio samples? And are soundfont files used by a fluidsynth also copied in?) Or perhaps there are some plugin presets or instances whose data is not stored in the directory — or does the
plugins/folder always contain that data?
To address the first issue (too much), which folders can I leave out when I’m backing up a project directory? — or should I copy everything? To address the second issue (not enough), does Ardour have a ‘consolidate’ functionality, that gathers all files (audio, MIDI, plugin presets, etc.) used by a project?
*P.S. My reason for backing up is incase my computer wipes out all my files, which happened recently. While I could easily reinstall the required plugins when this happens, I imagine recovering individual files — audio files, MIDI files, plugin presets, drum samples, soundfonts — would be painful, unless I backup well.
EDIT: I should clarify, when I say “plugin presets”, I’m referring Ardour’s “preset” function, the three buttons to the right of the pin configuration button, which allow you to look through existing presets, save a new one, or save the current one.