Archiving thoughts

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by dimme, Aug 15, 2013.

  1. dimme macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2007
    Location:
    SF, CA
    #1
    I just finished a 2+ year project scanning and cataloging our family photos my father took. The collection spans 50+ years and is over 8000 photos. I have the photos uploaded on flicker for the whole family to view. So not I thinking about long term storage of the digital files. Half the photos are tiffs and the other jpegs. Right now they are on my mac mini server drive which is backed up with crash plan. I also have 2 local backups. I started reading about bit rot and wondering if that is something I need to worry about. The drive the main copy is on is a WD my book running 24/7 I figure I would change out the drive every 3 years or so. The local backups are updated every week along with other files that are on the mini server.
    Can anyone offer and advise or is my setup pretty sound.
    Thanks
     
  2. dmax35 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2012
    #2
    I would buy a cheap drive and carbon copy your image files to it as a master copy and put it in a bank vault or safety deposit box offsite. God forbid any natural disaster to your house you always will have the master to recover from.
     
  3. dimme thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2007
    Location:
    SF, CA
    #3
    Good Idea, I was wondering what maintenance the hard drive would need. I thinking of recopying the files drive every year or two. Will that be sufficient?
     
  4. swordio777 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2013
    Location:
    Scotland, UK
    #4
    Depending on where you're storing your drives that's probably far more regularly than you need to. HDDs are obviously prone to failure, so updating it could potentially present more of a risk than any possible bit rot in a safety deposit box. If you're looking for the maximum security on a physical medium then I'd probably suggest copying to a SSD and only recopying the data once every 6-8 years or so.

    An online backup / storage could be an even better solution - that way it'll be saved to a massive server array where where faulty discs are replaced with no loss of data. That option also ticks the "offsite backup" box.

    With all that said - taking into account the speed that the computing market is moving and Moore's Law, it's almost impossible to know what kind of storage options will be available to us in the next 4-5 years. Rather than actually recopying the data onto the same disc in 4 years' time, you'll probably find it's easier just to buy a completely new disc to copy it to, and then dispose of the old one.

    While bit rot is a very real, I honestly don't think you need to be overly concerned unless you're storing important information on optical media (CD-R / DVD-R discs definitely DO degrade quickly).

    Hope that helps
     

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