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'[OT] Life of CDR recordings - Beware! - was Re: [O'
2000\04\24@051013 by Russell McMahon

picon face
>CD-R definitely has it's place.  Great for archival storage
>of source code, accounting data, and other things that you
>want to have around "just in case" for decades.  I've read
>that a reasonably stored CD-R disk will likely last from 50
>to 100 years.


Beware!

There is lots of misleading info around on this but there are some
suggestions that at least SOME of the Cyanine dyes may have a shelf life
after recording of only 5 to 10 years. The are claimed to all have the 50 to
100 year shelf lives.

BUT - reading extended commentaries on this indicates that the truth is
muddy and that the straight Cyanines MAY be OK if the people using them know
what they are doing.
Do YOU know what your Cyanine formulator knows :-)  ?

The early on simple rule was that the Cyanines had a greenish surface, while
the Pthalo-Cyanines had a goldfish surface. I have even heard of a CDR early
on where the gold surface wiped off after a little while which suggests that
for this maker at least the stories were true and they were trying to hide
their products quality :-(.

I have two web sourced files (1998 vintage) which discuss CDR lifetime
(amongst other things) in MSWORD format - of unknown value but they discuss
the issues - I will forward the two offlist to anyone who  asks - either
235K as 2 x DOC files or 80K as a ZIP - please specify. There is no doubt
much other about this on the net.

******* Please ask OFFLIST - not on. *********

If you are SERIOUS about very long time (archival) backup I think you need
to devise a scheme which takes account the possible risks.

eg

- Read manufacturers' claims and storage conditions.
- Make 2 (minimum) copies.
- Test read at no longer than half lifetime
- If any degradation, make new copies of the copies
- If no degradation, make new copies anyway :-)
- Maybe make a few test disks which are read say yearly to  see if there is
a noticeable trend.

Failure to do this could see you applying to a long since defunct CD maker
for a replacement of the media (value $1) to compensate for the loss of eg
your family photo collection. As the saying once went "If you have a $10
head then buy a $10 helmet". If your archive is worth real $ or memories to
you then you may have to put a little more $ and effort into it than using a
single CDR.

Hope these cheerful thoughts may save at least someone's family memories (or
data).


regards


       RM

PS - as I write this lightning flashes outside my window and thunder follows
a few seconds behind.
Wonder if I'll get this sent before my system crashes - better make a backup
:-) ?

2000\04\27@052832 by aipi Wijnbergen

picon face
<x-flowed>>If you are SERIOUS about very long time (archival) backup I think you need
>to devise a scheme which takes account the possible risks.
>
>eg
>
>- Read manufacturers' claims and storage conditions.
>- Make 2 (minimum) copies.
>- Test read at no longer than half lifetime
>- If any degradation, make new copies of the copies
>- If no degradation, make new copies anyway :-)
>- Maybe make a few test disks which are read say yearly to  see if there is
>a noticeable trend.


Hi,

"very long time", what is a long time ? 5 years, 10 years, 20 ?

In 10 years from now, it might be difficult to find a CD driver to read
these CDRs. I would  also suggest that you would buy an extra computer with
CD Reader and put it in a safe place, hope that it would not break by the
time you will need the data.

We keep old data written 10 years ago on MO disks using an old Ultrix file
system. The disks are fine, we had just now lost the MO Drive to read it,
we fixed the disks and not the UNIX workstation that wrote those files
broke. So, the disks are useless now.

Chaipi

</x-flowed>

2000\04\29@030132 by William Chops Westfield

face picon face
   As much as I hate to say this, Paper, or better yet, microfiche, might be a
   better idea if you forsee a need for this data in 10 or so years. However,
   my guess is that most technical data will be obsolete by then

Obsolete or not, 10 years from now, it might be HISTORY.

(BillW wishes he'd kept a journal on "current" media since he became
BillW@somewhere (billw@mit-mc, spam_OUTbillwTakeThisOuTspamsri-kl.arpa, .....billwKILLspamspam@spam@score.stanford.edu,
billwspamKILLspamcisco.com.)  That's about 22 years of history, some of it maybe even
historically significant.  And I wish I had transferred those original
Human-Nets emails to tape, and then to something more readable while I still
had access to a 9track tape drive.  (But I DO still have SOME 20-year old
emails online and accessible.))

BillW

2000\04\29@032045 by Russell McMahon

picon face
If you are serious about paper records make sure that the paper is CERTIFIED
acid free and archive quality.
"Ordinary" paper can have a distressing result with some imprinting means
over long periods.



RM
{Original Message removed}


'[OT] Life of CDR recordings - Beware! - was Re: [O'
2000\05\31@165925 by Marc
flavicon
face
> - Read manufacturers' claims and storage conditions.
> - Make 2 (minimum) copies.
> - Test read at no longer than half lifetime
> - If any degradation, make new copies of the copies
> - If no degradation, make new copies anyway :-)
> - Maybe make a few test disks which are read say yearly to  see if there is
> a noticeable trend.

Another important point:

- select new storage media before your backup system becomes unsupported history.

After all, the discussion was about 50-100 years of data retention.  Think
about restoring a hypothetical <20 year old 8" disk backup today?!   And of
what use is the data today?

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