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Photo 5 Apr 4, 2008 9:09 AM

hopefully this question and its answer will not only help me but others in the long run. Thanks in advance for any ideas, info etc anyone can offer

I am looking for a long term storage solution for my digital photo collection. Here the factors

- I have limited storage space in my home..... the entire bottom floor (basement) is unfinished and has no heat and air. So the discs would not be in the greatest enviorment

- Someone told me I should consider burning all my CD photo discs to either DL DVDs or Blue ray discs and then putting the CDs into a spindle box and vacuem srinking it in a vacuem type bag.

- Someone else suggested the same thing but for all the discs I currently do not use.

- I will always keep a copy of my photos on a hard drive(s) even if the two slots n my netgear storage central get filled and i put the older of the drives in a fire proof box in the basement. I currently use a 1tgb hard drive and have another 500GB in the device that I use as a system backup drive and for some other misc files that I keep.

- Have approx 200 discs now and I have several very large photo assignments and gigs coming up between now and end of August. I think I have the protenal to add another 30 or 40 discs in short order.


- Does anyone use blueray discs; do you use them for photo storage

- Can the 25GB single write as opposed to the rewritable be written in multi session format or does all the data have to be written in one pass. Same question for the 50GB dual layer version

- Where is the best place to get the drive and discs now

- How long does it take to write a 25GB or 50GB blue ray disc..... I know from a recent experience I have to burn 9 DL DVDs of wedding photos and it took severa hours to get it done. Will burning a 25GB or 50GBdisc take all day long.....

- Should I hold off for the time being and hope that proices will come down by the end of the year

- How stable are the discs. I remember when CD-Rs and CDRWs first came out they used to write fine and fail within a few months. Will blue ray disc hold up for many years (if stored properly)

I am assuming that the blue ray discs woud be best for keeping my older archives stuff (to free up storage space in my office area)and to keep my current use stuff still accessable on regular DVDs/CDs.

Also any additional storage space saving ideas would be appreciate. I am already storing my discs in a 4 drawer valutz unit that can hold 60 discs per drawer in sim jewel cases. I do have room to add one more unit but after that I gonna be out of space. The house is small and the basement as I said is not damp and no heated/air....


TCav Apr 4, 2008 11:39 AM

For long term archival storage of data (whatever kind of data) There's really only one solution: Magneto-Optical.

It's a proven technology that has stood the test of time.

Anything else (CDs, DVDs, Blu-Ray, vacuum sealed, shrink wrapped, etc.) and you're going to have to rewrite the disks periodically anyway.

Whatever you do, good luck.

JimC Apr 4, 2008 12:14 PM

Hard Drives.

Simply transfer everything to a larger hard drives from time to time.

The contents of my first hard drive (a Seagate 5MB drive I bought around 25 years ago that still works), is now on much larger drives, too.

Now, you can get much faster drives that can hold the contents of hundreds of these drives, at a fraction of the cost.

As I upgrade my hard drives periodically (both internal and external), I transfer their contents to larger drives, using the older drives as additional backups.

Photo 5 Apr 4, 2008 12:22 PM

Jim..... i am using a 1TGB hard drive now that has close to 700GB of on it. Sooner or later I am gonna need morehard drives..... I agree with you in using hard drives and they have always worked for mebut I also want to have a second back up just in case something goes wrong which is why I am looking for ideas. Almost all the people I talk with suggest multipule backs of different types.

I have used an 80GB, 300GB, 500GB and now the 1TGB. I remember getting that 80GB for almost $400 years ago. I still have the 500GB and use it as my system backup drive. I got rid of the other two drives giving therm to my father for his new computer that we built for him.


Photo 5 Apr 4, 2008 12:23 PM


For long term archival storage of data (whatever kind of data) There's really only one solution: Magneto-Optical.

What are you using and what Magneto-Optical system would you recommend I look at. My photos are very important to me and want whatever the best large volume storage system their is so your thoughts are appreciated.

Last month I shot a family wedding that got me 11GB of photos in 2 days. So it f\doesn't look like the volume pf photos is gonna stop anytime soon and I have several other large events coming up between now and end of July/August


TCav Apr 4, 2008 2:32 PM

Photo 5 wrote:

... Almost all the people I talk with suggest multipule backs of different types.
You've been talkingwith some smart people.

TCav Apr 4, 2008 2:32 PM

Photo 5 wrote:

What are you using ...
I store my photos on a server,on a3 drive RAID 5 array with a hot spare, and I back up onto tape.

Photo 5 wrote:

...what Magneto-Optical system would you recommend I look at.
Two companies make MO Drives: Sony and HP. I'd say they are equally good. 9.1 GB drives start at about $1,700, and 9.1 GB media cost about $90 each.

Steep, I know, but there's nothing better.

Calicajun Apr 4, 2008 8:47 PM

Another question in the same line for long term archival storage of data. Seeing as the Disc burners we can buy for home uses a different process than commercial companies use for long term storage. Are there companies out there where we could send our home made disk to be copied over to a commercial quality disk for better storage life?

pagerboy Apr 4, 2008 11:16 PM

Blu-Ray discs are $20 each so its still a little steep. I'd do the DVD/hard drive setup. If you are a pro then maybe the magneto-optical drives. Are there model numbers on those MO drives?

TCav Apr 5, 2008 7:41 AM

pagerboy wrote:

... Are there model numbers on those MO drives?

pagerboy Apr 5, 2008 8:51 AM

Thanks. I noticed that those drives are SCSI, have you seen sATA ones?

Wildman Apr 5, 2008 8:53 AM

Online storage is pretty inexpensive. claims unlimited storage for $50 per year.

BillDrew Apr 5, 2008 9:02 AM

TCav wrote:

Photo 5 wrote:

... Almost all the people I talk with suggest multipule backs of different types.
You've been talkingwith some smart people.
What TCav said.

In addition to many copies on many different kinds of media, keep them in many different locations. Your house, your mother's house, at work, a bank vault in Switzerland, ...

And keep moving your backups to new/better/bigger media as it becomes avialable/affordable. How many people today can read a single sided eight inch floppy? Five chanel paper tape? How many DVDs would it take to hold one High deffinition two hour movie?

That gets very ridiculous very quickly, and no backup system will be absolutely safe. The best you can do is reduce the chance of loss to a very small number that will never be zero.

TCav Apr 5, 2008 10:09 AM

pagerboy wrote:

Thanks. I noticed that those drives are SCSI, have you seen sATA ones?
No. These are frequently used in jukeboxes, where the extra intelligence of SCSI devices is necessary. For instance, the host needs to delay the eject command until there is a carrier in position to accept the disk. SATA devices aren't smart enough to do that.

SCSI devices are a lot smarter than SATA devices, and because of the processing power in the devices themselves, they take over some of the workload that the host processor would have to do if it were dealing with SATA drives. I used to use only SCSI hard disk drives in my computers until the cost difference became too great. There are now a lot of SATA RAID controllers available, but they have to do a lot more work than the SCSI RAID controllers that preceded them.

TCav Apr 5, 2008 5:06 PM

There are lots of ways to back up.

I recommend all of them.

Photo 5 Apr 6, 2008 5:26 PM


thanks for all the info. Looks like I am gonna stay with using CD/DVDs and hard drives in my netgear storage central for now. Once blueray gets cheaper and more common i will start to use that to make copies I can put in a safe depostit box and have less discs sitting at home. I plan to move my original DVDs/CDs afer I get blueray discs burned to my cosuins house that has a finished basement and room to store several box of discs for me........


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