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Old Dec 17, 2004, 4:57 PM   #1
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I am new to the Forum but not new to photography. When I walked past my favorite Photo Shop just yesterday, I noticed a new "WARNING" poster in the window. It's regarding the storage of immages on CD-ROM. Ist it true that they will self destruct or loose the immages after 5years? If so, would you be safe to "make a copy" the ones you want to keep every 4 years in order to preserve what you have?

I have some which now approach 4 years and I am concerned. Where can one read up on this subject? Are the more expensive CD's better then the "cheapies"

:sad:
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Old Dec 18, 2004, 12:11 AM   #2
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retinaman wrote:
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I am new to the Forum but not new to photography. When I walked past my favorite Photo Shop just yesterday, I noticed a new "WARNING" poster in the window. It's regarding the storage of immages on CD-ROM. Ist it true that they will self destruct or loose the immages after 5years? If so, would you be safe to "make a copy" the ones you want to keep every 4 years in order to preserve what you have?

I have some which now approach 4 years and I am concerned. Where can one read up on this subject? Are the more expensive CD's better then the "cheapies"

:sad:

Good CDs will last for, in theory, 30 years. Some of the best write media is made by Taiyo Yuden.

http://www.t-yuden.com/recordablemedia/index.cfm

http://www.yenra.com/how-long-cds-and-dvds-last/
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Old Dec 23, 2004, 8:14 AM   #3
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If it was me, I'd back up files on different media. You could try cdrom, and maybe dvd. And as a further backup, can grab two big hard drives and use them for storage. Store the same things on both drives. If one drive fails due to aging etc, then at least the chance of the other one still working is good..so then grab another drive and then transer all the info across. A big external USB type drive wouldn't hurt either. I think that spending time and effort to back things up saves a lot of heartache and pain.

For cdroms, I heard that even if the material is stable...the thing is like ..made of plastic or whatever. And a plastic is a fluid..so it's susceptible to creep, which is a slow movement of the liquid...where the shape of the cdrom distorts...given time..maybe a long time.
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Old Dec 23, 2004, 9:18 PM   #4
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Kenny_Leong wrote:
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If it was me, I'd back up files on different media. You could try cdrom, and maybe dvd. And as a further backup, can grab two big hard drives and use them for storage. Store the same things on both drives. If one drive fails due to aging etc, then at least the chance of the other one still working is good..so then grab another drive and then transer all the info across. A big external USB type drive wouldn't hurt either. I think that spending time and effort to back things up saves a lot of heartache and pain.

For cdroms, I heard that even if the material is stable...the thing is like ..made of plastic or whatever. And a plastic is a fluid..so it's susceptible to creep, which is a slow movement of the liquid...where the shape of the cdrom distorts...given time..maybe a long time.
Ideally one would have a computer solely for this purpose, backing up. It'd be a RAID-1 HD setup plus a fast boot drive separate from data. The RAID-1 could be 2, 3, or 4 disks.
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Old Dec 23, 2004, 10:32 PM   #5
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You may be interested in this document:
http://www.itl.nist.gov/div895/carefordisc/index.html

It is oriented toward librarians but has a lot of useful information for the rest of us too. Note that long estimates of CD lifetimes generally assume the kind of optimal conditions that most of us cannot achieve.

Refreshing your media periodically as you suggest is a good idea, as are the other suggestions about keeping multiple copies on different kinds of media.
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Old Dec 24, 2004, 10:20 AM   #6
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It's very simple- If you live Ten years after you burn the CD.

1) Longevity is Ten Years

2) Longevity is a lifetime

I burn high quality CD's, Then a DVD of several CD's and back up on an external harddrive. I archive at another location in case of fire/flood/theft.
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Old Dec 25, 2004, 10:12 AM   #7
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I've been reading a lot of stuff on this and I think that making prints are your best bet. Burning to cd's or dvd's that will probably not be readable or at least instantly recognizable in the far future will just, in my opinion, relegate them to the dust bin. Just who is all this valuable stuff being archived for anyway? Your descendants ten generations down? ha!

Just my two cents. The stuff you do is most likely valuable to you-only in rare cases to the tenth generation.

I say use paper copy.

SLK
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Old Dec 26, 2004, 7:27 AM   #8
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Prints will degrade eventually. Digital doesn't degrade if you just look after the information. As long as you know how to decode the jpg or whatever file, then you'll always be able to 'see' it.
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