Previous 1 2 Next 26 Replies Latest reply: Nov 22, 2010 9:27 AM by Chris CA Go to original post
  • frozenhead Level 1 (5 points)
    Broke my heart in school when we had to switch from punch cards to fortran. I was never as good with fortran and I've long since forgotten it. Only got a C in that class. I impressed the girls with my HP 35. Winters were colder back then too-- one time the 10 K Turkey Day Races started at 40 below. Froze my ear lobes.

    Perhaps I should ask as a new topic, but any opinions about "archival" blu ray media compared to dvd? I've been using some blu ray disks that are LTH- type that are supposed to be more durable. Are they? Do blu ray and dvd disks need to be "gold" in order to be "archival?"
  • Rufus Level 3 (625 points)
    dgbmunger wrote:
    What experience has anyone had burning archival gold DVDs on a new MAC PRO? Is 18X speed (top speed) enough on a 2.8 GHz or would more be better?

    You have this backwards. For archival purposes, you want to burn as slow as you can. The slower the burn, the better.
  • Rufus Level 3 (625 points)
    Frozenhead, let's just say that I've been around the block. (I started on Apple IIs in the mid 80's.)
    If you haven't copied those floppies yet, you're wasting your time at this point. The data is long gone.
    What I'm saying is that you should have copied any floppies you owned to cd about 20yrs ago.
    My floppy disc images were backed up to optical media probably around '92-94... and has since been reburned to dvd.
    The challenge today is to find a machine that can run not only the native media (800k floppies), but one that can actually run the software.

    For me, about the only stuff that old that I consider useful is all my IIGS software. Anything for Mac that old is simply not worth keeping, unless of course you have a working Mac relic that you are hanging on to. (I still have my IIGS.)

    Optical media works, and works well when it's used correctly. Magnetic media such as floppies, Syquest, ZIP, and EZ discs were pretty much useless a decade ago.

    I'm about to start dumping OS9 stuff..
  • frozenhead Level 1 (5 points)
    You may have a lot more confidence in optical media than the Library of Congress has. The best quality stuff may last as long as a hundred years IF correctly burned and stored properly and in a good environment, but it may last 5 years or less if not handled and stored optimally.

    Regarding correct burning speed, I'm not sure if I agree that slower is better. I've read otherwise-- using other than recommended burn speed, whether slower or faster than recommended, may cause errors-- personally I'd buy good media and go with the manufacturer's burning speed recommendation.

    Modern burners are often sophisticated enough to identify media and apply appropriate burning speed. So maybe the answer here is to just leave the burner alone and let it do its job. If the burn is checked and verified, what's the difference between a verified 1X burn and a verified 4X burn?

    Sorry if I'm wrong, but again, I'm skeptical of the longevity of digital media. We shouldn't assume that even "archival" media, like what is being discussed here, or optical media in general, will actually last. Places like Library of Congress, Wilhelm, and ASTM have ongoing research and there are so many other factors in addition to burn speed. The empirical science seems less reassuring than your own fortunate experiences. You may be luckier than most.

    I may not agree that slower is always better and in fact it could be worse. I'd contact the manufacturer and go with their recommendation.
  • The hatter Level 9 (60,930 points)
    Disk Utility can't burn a Windows 7 ISO to DVD UNLESS it is burned at reduced 2x speed. Done on (or probably under Windows) no such restriction. Not that I know why, only having had to help others learn the hard way. Something though must be amiss there.

    Yucca Mountain anyone? (without the nuclear waste of course!!)
  • frozenhead Level 1 (5 points)
    Yucca is too dry.

    Wonder why the difference in burn speed between platforms.
  • Rufus Level 3 (625 points)
    frozenhead wrote:
    The best quality stuff may last as long as a hundred years IF correctly burned and stored properly and in a good environment, but it may last 5 years or less if not handled and stored optimally.

    The point I'm trying to make is that 5yrs is plenty!
    By that time, the next media type comes along and you must reburn everything anyway. As long as this is done before degradation happens, then the data stays good.
    Burning data to a disc and expecting that disc to last 20, 30, or 50 yrs is like buying a new car and expecting it to do the same. Even if you took immaculate care of the car, in 20yrs the new cars are better, more fuel efficient, etc.
    I can now fit approximately 70 cds of data on a single 50GB BR disc. Why would I want to keep all those old style discs (even if they could last 30yrs) if I could use a single piece of modern media?

    Again, the only exception to this is if you have a legacy machine that you need to use old style media with.

    Message was edited by: Rufus
  • frozenhead Level 1 (5 points)
    5 years MAY be plenty IF you do everything right. Many folks don't compare digital media to cars-- they assume digital media lasts a lot longer. I think your comparison to car longevity is more accurate.

    You know how to protect your data. However for every one of you there are many others who don't know. Your strategy (and mine) is to copy and update reasonably often. Most folks assume mass produced cds and dvds are just like home burned media-- looks like it, smells like it, tastes like it. Wrong.

    I don't think there is any such thing as archival digital media. You have to transfer archives every several years and update to contemporary formats when necessary if you want to be able to access your stuff in the future.

    By the way, in the 1990s, I started trying to copy and archive my floppies less than 5 years after I had purchased them, and that was not soon enough. Hopefully optical media, especially the best (like Taiyo Yuden) will have better longevity.

    After we have copied things over and over, from one platform to another and from one medium to another, can we assume our contemporary copies will continue to be identical to the originals? That doesn't always turn out to be true. How do we know if degradation has occurred? We may not even know.

    I appreciate your feedback and personal experiences. Makes me rethink my backup strategies. Perhaps I'm more paranoid than needed. Thanks!
  • romko23 Level 2 (395 points)
    And how old r u? 20?
  • Chris CA Level 9 (78,695 points)
    Your profile states you are 23 years old. How did you get a computer in 1985?
  • Rufus Level 3 (625 points)
    Chris CA wrote:
    Your profile states you are 23 years old. How did you get a computer in 1985?

    Not sure what you're looking at as my age is nowhere in my profile that I'm aware of, besides, I don't want to be 23 again! (I'm 54.)
  • Chris CA Level 9 (78,695 points)
    Not sure what you're looking at as my age

    As indicated in my message ( "in response to: romko23" ), my response was to Romko.
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