It is very good practice to backup your music files as well as Serato software data. Serato software will automatically create a backup of the _Serato_ folder in the Music/My Music folder on the computers system drive.
The reason we recommend users make their own backup is in case the folder that the _Serato_ folder is in becomes corrupt or is accidentally deleted. We highly recommend users backup their _Serato_ folder and music files to an external hard drive or another computer.
If you are running a beta version of any Serato software you should definitely be backing up your data due to the uncertain stability of beta software.
1. Make a copy of the _Serato_ folder on your internal drive
- OS X : Go to users/username/music, copy the _Serato_ folder by right-clicking on it and selecting 'Copy _Serato_'. To paste, right click and select 'Paste item'
- Windows : Go to My Music, copy the _Serato_ folder by right-clicking on it and selecting 'Copy'. To paste, right-click and select 'Paste'.
TIP : You may want to rename them, have one copy on your internal hard drive and another copy on an external hard drive or USB stick. This way if anything goes wrong on your internal you have it backed up on your external and vice versa.
2. Make a copy of the _Serato_ folder on any external hard drives
This folder has information for the tracks stored on the drive.
- OS X/Windows : Copy the _Serato_ folder from your external hard drive. To paste it right-click and select 'Paste/Paste Item'.
Similarly with your internal drive, you can keep the backup folder within the primary folder or you can move it to a different drive.
Note : As mentioned previously, having a copy of the folder on both your external and internal is recommended so that if either drive crashes you will still have a backup.
3. Make a copy of the music files on your hard drive
Find all your music files and put them into a folder. Move this folder to your storage drive. If you ever need to restore from the backup use the 'relocate lost files' function to refresh the file path location that Serato software has for these files.
Keep a tidy library so backing-up becomes easier. Missing files become a pain when they are from various locations. It's good to have them all in one folder so you can quickly relocate all lost files together. Just drag and drop this folder onto the 'Relocate Lost Files' button to scan for missing tracks.
- See 'How-to : Use the Relocate Lost Files Feature' for more information
Pro Tip: Open Serato DJ, click on your 'All' main library crate and press 'Control + A / Command + A' to select your entire library. Now drag these files to your external hard drive in the files panel (you may want to make a music folder in your external to put them in). You will asked whether you want to Move or Copy the files, select Copy. Just like that you have made a copy of all the files in your Scratch Live library.
Formats for external hard drives
A file system format is how a computer stores and organizes files and data to be read by it's operating system. Different operating systems organize and store their data differently.
- The file system format for a Mac OS is called Mac OS Extended, sometimes called HFS Plus.
- The file system format for Microsoft Windows is called NTFS.
- Both Mac OS and Microsoft Windows are able to utilize the FAT file system format.
Mac OS is able to read the Microsoft Windows file system format, however it can not write to it. Microsoft Windows can not read the Mac OS Extended file system format at all.
Many Serato software users that use an external hard drive find that tag information (cue points, loops, overviews etc) doesn't save when they exit and re-enter the program. This is often because the external drive is formatted to the incorrect operating system therefore it can not be written to and therefore tag information can not be saved.
Luckily hard drives can be reformatted. If you are running a new Mac book Pro but your external hard drive is formatted to your old Windows PC (NTFS) then you will want to reformat the external drive to either Mac OS Extended or FAT32 so it can be both read and written to.
Note : There are two limitations of FAT32.
1.) It only supports file sizes of 4GB or less.
2.) Some Mac applications may not run from the drive as FAT32 does not adequately handle the permissions structure of Mac OS X.
To find out what file system format your external hard drive is right-click on it and select 'Properties' (Windows) / 'Get Info' (Mac).
How to (Re)format your External Hard Drive with Mac OS
- Backup ALL data on the drive - formatting will erase everything (See pageOne)
- Open “Disk Utility” (Applications/Utilities/Disk Utility)
- Click on the External Drive
- Click on the “Erase” tab
- In “Volume Format” select either Mac OS Extended (Journaled) or MS-DOS (FAT32).
- Click “Erase”
How to (Re)format your External Hard Drive with Microsoft Windows
- Backup ALL data on the drive - formatting will erase everything (See page 1)
- Open 'My Computer'
- Right-Click on the External Drive
- Click "Format..."
- Select either 'NTFS' or ExFAT ('FAT32')
- Click 'Start'. When it has finished you will be able to use the external hard drive.
If you are having any problems and need further help please click here to start a help request.