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Old Aug 7, 2006, 10:00 AM   #1
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I'm trying to decide the best format for backing up photos that are now piling up on my hard drive. I posted a question in another forum asking what's the best DVD format (R or RW) for back-up, but have since learned that my system only has a DVD ROM, not a burner (shows you how much I know!!). So now I'm trying to decide the best direction to go:

1. Internal DVD burner for my Dell desktop
2. External DVD burner
3. External hard drive
4. External Flash drive

My main goal is to have a simple and safe way to store my pics for future printing/editing needs. I know I can't just leave them on my hard drive forever. Any and all opinions appreciated!!!
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Old Aug 7, 2006, 11:21 AM   #2
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CD-R using 'gold' archival grade CDs.

External HDD using an independant UPS.

USE BOTH !
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Old Aug 7, 2006, 2:40 PM   #3
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Thanks. Just curious--can you tell me why you prefer CDs over DVDs for back up? Also, why CD-R over CD-RW? THANKS!
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Old Aug 7, 2006, 5:50 PM   #4
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see this site :

http://mam-a.com/products/gold/archive.html




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Old Aug 8, 2006, 2:53 AM   #5
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Looks like their DVDs will last for 100 years too.

http://mam-a.com/products/dvd/index.html

I would trade the 300 year archive down to 100 for the convenience of burning 1 disk instead of 6.


Actually I just use ordinary DVDs and a hard drive backup. And I upload my best photos to Flickr which will store them indefinitely (as long as I stay a member).
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Old Aug 8, 2006, 7:17 PM   #6
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I use a large internal hard drive, 2 external HD's (one portable, and one connected to my network) and use DVD's that I store in a safe deposit box at my bank, that I replace every few months (3-4 times per year). I work on files on several different computers so the network storage is convenient. In any case I have 4 different backups with one always off site.
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Old Aug 8, 2006, 11:08 PM   #7
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Evidently DVDs can't be made with pythalocyanine dye. It is a little harder to burn to than the standard cyanine. Cyanine limits the life to about 30 years regardless of putting a gold backing on it. I think in less than 30 years you would do well to transfer any media to a more current format anyway.

There was resistance to DVD for archive because it uses a lot less space for error correction. But evidently the error correction is more efficient which makes it about a wash.

RW media doesn't last as long as record once. It has a worse reputation than it probably deserves because many RWs were recorded with packet writing which makes the CD or DVD act like another drive on the computer. There are a lot of vulnerabilities to packet writing to RW. But there is no reason to archive to RW since you won't be overwriting.

Probably the best dye type available for DVD is the Azo in Verbatim discs. All Verbatim DVDs and CDs are made by the parent company and not farmed out or rebranded like many common brands.

An external HD is very convenient, but I wouldn't trust a mechanical device for long term storage without some other form of backup like DVD or CD. They are safest when unplugged when not recording to them. But follow the instructions as they aren't hot swappable without turning them off in Windows first.

For about the same price as an external drive you can get a case with an external drive of the same size and speed. That way you can just pop it open when it is full and replace it with another less expensive internal unit. I use that setup and it works well.


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