Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Digicam Help > General Discussion

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Aug 3, 2006, 6:40 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 14
Default

I'm relatively new to digital photography and would like to back up the images I currently have on my hard drive to DVDs.(I havethe Roxio Easy CD Creator 5 basic that came with my Dell.) Some people have said not to use the DVD-RW format for storage because it's often not compatible with all computers. However, I'd preferto use the RW format because I like the idea of being able to move files around once I've burned them. So . . . . is it safe/advisable to use the RW format? I understand it may be apersonal preference, but I wouldlove to hear whatyou digital veteransthink.

THANKS!!
4eyes is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Aug 3, 2006, 7:25 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
hgernhardtjr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 516
Default

I personally do not bother with the RWs ... DVD+/-R are now very inexpensive and hold a lot. I archive my shots on DVDs, mess around with them on the computer and my external hard drive dedicated to photos, then rearchive on a new DVD or just add a new (named by date) folder onto one that is not yet sufficientlyfull. That way I ultimately retain a full backup across several DVDs.

Additionally, by their nature RWs are erasable ... accidently leave one exposed in, for example,a HOT, bright car next to a regular R and guess which oneloses datafirst. IMHO and, indeed,personal preference ...
hgernhardtjr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 3, 2006, 8:46 PM   #3
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 14
Default

Thanks for sharing -- you make a strong case for not using the RW format. I'll be interested to seeif others are in agreement with you. In either case, the next step will be figuring out how to burn DVDs using my basic Easy CD Creator . . .

Thanks again.
4eyes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 11, 2006, 8:38 PM   #4
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 4
Default

I am facing much the same situation you are so I would like to comment. First, we have around 10 GB offamily/personal digital pictures that have to be archived. We do the organizing on the internal hard drive before burning them to DVD.

Recently, I had a discussion with other IT professionals that basically state the "usable lifespan" of optical media like DVD, DVD+/-R/RW, CD, etc is not really known at this time. I don't know about you guys, but if I lost any of my pictures my wife would kill me. :lol:

As a result, I recently purchased some software called Beyond Compare 2 from Scooter Software for about $30. This program does a bit wise copy of files from one location to another. I use an external USB hard drive and backup the whole thing as required. Since the program does bit wise comparison, I only have to backup the files that have been changed or added since my last backup. The originals stay on the internal hard drive and the backup works with any computer with USB support.

I don't know what the best option is, but I would rather wait and see on the longevity of optical media before I let my shots go. I hope this helps.
bigslickset is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 12, 2006, 11:53 AM   #5
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 14
Default

Thanks Bigslickset. I'll check out your suggestions. At this point, I'm willing to look into all possibilities. I just know I have to do something soon!
4eyes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 12, 2006, 5:20 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Indian Rocks Beach, FL
Posts: 4,036
Default

Any "backup" system is probably reliable. Backup assumes your data also stays on your main computer. That a DVD you checked for errors and spot checked for the data being uncorrupted would fail at the same time as your computer hard drive is very unlikely. The same is true for an external HD unless you leave it plugged in all the time and a file destroying virus wipes it out along with your main drive. That is probably rare.

Archive is a different matter. If you are going to archive your images or data and remove it from the computer HD you need redundancy. Two DVDs written to different brand media and stored in separate places or DVD + external HD for instance.

To move files around on RW you have to use packet writing programs. With Roxio the packet writing component is DirectCD. If you use mastering software like EZCD you can only erase a RW disc and start over. Packet writing makes the RW act like another drive.

There are some serious liabilities to using packet writing to RW even for backup. Any time the DVD is in the drive the packet writing program is active and the DVD is subject to viruses, accidental erasure etc. Packet writing software also stores the file allocation table on RAM until you properly shut it down. It will write the FAT to the DVD with a normal computer shutdown, but a power failure or lockup will often cause you to lose data. It can be recovered with recovery software, but I don't know of any that is free and will find files on packet written discs.

Any disk you write should be stored in the dark both before and after you record to it. It is laser light that writes the data and light can corrupt it. Some very knowledgeable people thought RW CDs were generally manufactured to a higher standard than CDR. I don't know whether than is true or whether it applies to DVD. My personal preference is gold backed CDs with pthalocyanine dye. I have a stock of them and use one of those and one shorter life cyanine based CD for archive. I also keep the stuff on an external HD. The longest lasting dye type available in DVDs is Azo in Verbatim DVDs. All others use the shorter lived cyanine dye. For some reason pthalocyanine doesn't work with DVD. I know it is considered harder to record to and some very old CD burners had problems with it. All Verbatim Data Life DVDs are made by the parent company, Mitsubishi Chemicals, and are not farmed out or rebranded like most brands are. They are probably a good bet for archive.

But I have generic cyanine based CDs that are still readable after over ten years and the theoretical life of cyanine is around 30 years. You would probably transfer the data to a more current media by then anyway. The important thing is to know what record speed produces the lowest error rate – not necessarily the slowest BTW. And to check the burn for corruption. Nero does a good job of that but I still spot check. And of course keep them in the dark.


slipe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 14, 2006, 7:11 PM   #7
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 18
Default

WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!! how the hell do u fill a DVD let alone a hard drive with PICTURES! i in total like ALLL my pictures, from the internet including, like wallpaper, probabyl wont reach 1GB. props to all you who have SO many pics.
aslanov is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 16, 2006, 2:45 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
hgernhardtjr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 516
Default

In answer to your questionaslanov, ittruly depends onone's age as well as dedication to and interest levelin photography!

For example, my digital-camera-photos alone comprise just under 180 GB of data. That includes photos from 3.2mp through 11mp, JPG as well as Sony and Canon RAW formats. They are backed up on one large usually un-connected hard drive and archived on three separately-stored ever-growing CD/DVD sets. In-work files, amounting to about15 GB, reside on my working hard drive as well as an in-computer backup hard drive. Yes, I take a lot of photos and they are of both monetary and sentimentalvalue to me.

And I am sure there are many photographers who take, print, and/or savefar more photographs than I do or ever will.

Now, if and when I get all my film photos from the past half-century scanned in ... I dread to think how many GB that will take.

Plus my father, several years gone now, had hundreds of film rolls and sheet film photographs taken starting circa 1920 and from all over the world. All are stored properly, though some color filmstock fades rapidly.A wonderful treasury of rare and history-documenting shots ... perhaps I should start digitizing them first!
hgernhardtjr is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 7:25 PM.