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pamk
02-05-2006, 07:05 PM
does anyone use these instead of CDs to archive your photos?

rprii
02-06-2006, 06:43 AM
I have used a Maxtor external drive for about 6 months . . . works great and is very fast (high speed USB port). Beats the heck out of opening up your PC and adding a drive. However, nothing is perfect and I still archive my really important stuff to DVD. Hope this helps.

WightWalker
02-06-2006, 07:56 AM
I still archive my really important stuff to DVD. Hope this helps.
Any recordable medium is vulnerable to failure; experiences that I've encountered is that DVD is more prone to data curruption that CDROM.

As you know, even film had a limited life before that degraded, so in truth, there's no permanent solution to storing anything other than backing it up onto different media and/or method i.e. use different brands of DVD or CDROM and hold a backup on hard disk or ZIP drive.

If it's really important, store it on a remote server where the data is backed up - that's got to be pretty fullproof.

Ishkabibble
02-06-2006, 12:11 PM
I have been a computer technician for approximately 15 years and backups are my strong point. I do NOT recommend using a hard drive for your only backup, but as one of a couple techniques, it's great. Here are some reasons not to use only a hard drive for backup:

Drive failure (quite common)
Viruses (more common)
Oops I dropped it
power surges
data corruption
accidental deletion or overwriting of originals

I could go on, but clearly it isn't enough.

I do not recommend CD backups due to media design issues. If you look at a CD, you will note that there is a thin metallic film on the outside of the disc. If this is damaged, you disc and data on it is toast. At least that section of it anyway. If this layer lifts (common if you apply sticky label your discs), your disc and data is toast. If you write on the disc and the ink causes the binding agent to seperate, your backup is toast. The vital layer is on the top surface, exposed to the elements or whatever might come in contact with it. This is not the case with DVD discs.

Take a look at your DVD and you will note that there is a layer sandwiched between two sheets of plastic. Scratch either side (within reason) and you will be okay. Use a sticky label and you are safer on DVD than CD. I personally use DVDs for backup and recommend them to everyone. 35 cents will backup 4.5 GB worth of data; make two copies and keep one in an alternate location. In my case, I do use a hard drive, but only so I don't have to constantly pull out my backups. Also, quality matters. If it seems to cheap to be worth buying, it isn't a good choice for backups. The quality of the binding agents and materials within do differ. Also, always burn vital information at your lowest speed. It increases accuracy and disc compatibility.

Hope it helps,

Chris

Ishkabibble
02-06-2006, 12:19 PM
Last minute thought. I purchase two brands of discs and backup to one of each. This way if there are any issues with seperation or disc quality, I am less likely to be affected.

Rhys
02-06-2006, 01:29 PM
Last minute thought. I purchase two brands of discs and backup to one of each. This way if there are any issues with seperation or disc quality, I am less likely to be affected.

And purchase a good brand such as Sony.

TheObiJuan
02-06-2006, 03:39 PM
I have been using a 350GB external HD and love it.
I highly recommend it for another form of data backup.

AnalogueToDigital
02-06-2006, 06:58 PM
one of the things I like most about digital, is the ease with which you can ensure your precious photos are stored safely. I think a BIG advantage of optical (thanks for the advice about DVDs ishkabible) is that you can store them away from your house. A backup in the same room (or even house) as your PC is not a safe backup! Think fires, floods, or theft :eek:

My advice is to backup to optical and mail some copies to friends!