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Sometimes, my files become corrupted without me noticing - this happens to my photos a lot. This doesn't bother me when I notice it because I have backups. It's growing to be a pain to manually go over all the photos from time to time (I have tens of thousands). What can I do to automatically detect if a file has been corrupted?

So far, the only method I have found is to use MD5 checksums. But I haven't found a way to automate this.

For example, if I have a folder with 500 pictures, how I do determine if the MD5 checksums for the photos have changed since last time I checked?

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In order to compare if file corruption happens you a copy to compare to. This means backups. I would first figure out the reason your having a problem with file corruption to begin with. There are hundreds of cloud backup solutions, automatic file duplication software, and other solutions. –  Ramhound May 12 '13 at 9:32
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Anyone else with access to these "tens of thousands" of pictures? Are these pictures stored on the system you use everyday or an external drive (i.e., USB, NAS, etc.)? I agree with @Ramhound you have a more serious issue(s) if your files are being "corrupted without me noticing". –  packets May 12 '13 at 11:10

1 Answer 1

I haven't used this software before, but I believe it to be a valid answer to your question.

http://corz.org/windows/software/checksum/

[...] providing secure verification against tampering, virus infection, file (and backup file) corruption, transfer errors and more, digital fingerprints can serve as an "early warning" of possible media failures, be they optical or magnetic. [...]

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