Hi guys, i find myself in the following situation, and not too sure what is a good
over the years, ive ended up with quite a bit of “data”, on various storage media.
Data is quite diverse:
ranging from family photos, document scans, large multi-versioned multimedia
projects, family video conversions from cinefilm, games development content, anims,
backups, sound and graphic icons/librarys etc. (small files/larger files)
(even huge collections of doom2 wad files and game mods - which even now there are
massive websites doing well for that niche)
a) on old ida/pata drives (still working but not sure for how long) (15yrs)
b) on older cd’s (a good few hundred or so main ones) (10yrs)
c) on data dvds around 100 (last 5yrs) (mainly compressed data)
d) on cd/rw (since approx 10yrs)
e) on iomega zip disks (10-15yrs approx)
Total data probably about 1tb compressed to (estimate 1:10 ratio) say 10tb uncompressed).
(heh, have about 100 of these - back in the day, friends often would offer me cheap
Mac formatted ziptools disks (macs werent nowear as popular as pcs back then) for a
few quid… this was excellent for me as pc formatted ones were ranging from about
£4 in massive bulk deals, to around £11-15 for a 1 off) - ended up getting them to
go through all the departments buying up old mac tools disks, and i simply re-formatted them and they were perfect LOL - got super deals
lord sugar would be proud of
while i probably have more data then i “actually” really need if i was to sift
through it all - i dont have super amounts of time to do that and just want to
ensure i can still access that data in the future.
ive heard (from Suite b i think) that the drives only last for about 20 years, and
on various websites that different cd dye materials can only last so long, before
they simply dont work anymore) -
buzzwords include short life strategy, metal azo, something cythaninene, long life
but dont use much, or use as much as you want but only for 5 years etc…
on the zip disks, ive been using TIP from Steve Gibson (grc)
that seems to work quite well, at only about 1min per zip, taking around 2 hours
every 3 months or so.
on the drives, ive started (dumping) folder contents onto the drobo (for data
rather than installed program files etc)
on the cds/dvd (optical media), am not sure if i should just dump it all onto a
drobo, or if its quicker, (or more cost effective) to buy or rent a basic cd
duplicator, and to just buy a set of cheap blanks and basically clone all the old
ones onto new ones?
unless ive made a mistake, even for standard level brands, the cost per GigaByte
seems to still be cheaper than hard drives. eg 33p/gb hd, vs 10p/GB on a good dvd
but they needing another whole shelf to put them on lol
or is it better to pay a hosting company each month and get some sort of
protected/backed up area with encypted tunnel to be able to access it when needed
(not sure how much that wouldcost though)
Peter B Clements (of quickpar fame) had good info and tools (before his site got done by tukish hackers) with people using some kind of universal base version of an atapi cd reader (which would apparently always create the same byte-level cd extracted image data, upon every runtime), which was used to create a master parity quickpar set, and in the event of a scratched disk it would be used to read each and every possible bit of info, and then when used with a set of par2 data you could effectively re-create an iso image to then make a fixed new cd. (that was the theory but i cant seem to find more about it recently)
i dont know how many of you are in the same boat - but i guess as time goes on we’re all collecting or generating more data each year that theres probably a lot of you in a similar boat?
always good to hear your thoughts