How long can an iTunes library stay uncorrupted?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by StephenCampbell, Jul 20, 2012.

  1. StephenCampbell macrumors 65816

    Sep 21, 2009
    I have most of my music only on my computer and on my time machine drive. Is this a reliable way to keep it indefinitely? I'm thinking super, super long term. Fifty years from now will I still be able to listen to all this music I bought? Why or why not?
  2. macs4nw, Jul 20, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2012

    macs4nw macrumors 601


    I see no reason why you wouldn't be able to enjoy your music that far into the future providing the year 2062 finds you alive and well of course, however Fifty years is a long time!! In the short term you could burn your music collection onto multiple DVD's and/or pick up another good quality hard drive-they're not that expensive anymore-thus having a back-up to your Time Capsule back-up. Preferably do not store either one of these in the same physical location as your computer with TC. Of course there's also iCloud.

    Longer term, the chance that any of the currently ubiquitous formats like DVD or Blu-ray will be around fifty years from now would probably be close to NIL, so you would have to keep moving your music collection to new formats as they become available. Good luck!
  3. StephenCampbell thread starter macrumors 65816

    Sep 21, 2009
    Yeah.. that's the thing. Will data still be stored as 0s and 1s in fifty years? Will I still be able to access all this music if I hang onto it through whatever technology changes come? It seems dubious.
  4. macs4nw macrumors 601


    I don't believe you need to worry about that. After all we are still able to listen to music that was recorded in the late 19th century, and played back originally on a grammophone with a vinyl disc and a steel needle.

    I think the real question is: Would you want to listen to it 50 years from now?
  5. Destroysall macrumors 65816

    Feb 28, 2012
    United States
    Just grab a Hard Drive and throw it in an external disclosure. Then save all your music onto it. That way, all your music will be safe. You can also go out and purchase the CD copies of your music. Most of my music collection, I have CDs of. The small percentage I don't have were purchased from the iTunes store or other online websites such as or the Bowers & Wilkins 'Society of Sound' and places relative to those.

    You should be fine either way.
  6. barredfreak macrumors 6502

    Jan 9, 2012
    I suppose you could keep it for 50 years to come, if you had a backup of your backup of your backup.
  7. StephenCampbell thread starter macrumors 65816

    Sep 21, 2009
    Absolutely. Most of it is already several hundred years old... another fifty is nothing.

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