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Optical Discs vs Flash Drives for Storage?

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Viper69

Member
Joined
Feb 26, 2003
As portable USB Flash drives are increasing in size, I'd like people's opinions, what do they think is a safer (in terms of failure rate) to store data on

1. USB Flash drives
2. Optical disks, CD-R/RW DVD-R/RWs

Granted flash drives are more convenient and smaller, but I wonder if disks would be better?
 

ATMINSIDE

Sim Racing Aficionado Co-Owner
Joined
Jun 28, 2012
I would be more inclined to trust a flash drive, personally.
Buy a nice one with a long warranty and you'll have the best chance of a long lifetime from it.
 
OP
V

Viper69

Member
Joined
Feb 26, 2003
I would be more inclined to trust a flash drive, personally.
Buy a nice one with a long warranty and you'll have the best chance of a long lifetime from it.


Not saying you are wrong, but what's your thinking behind that? I'd be concerned the chip or parts of the chip would give out. Hence why I learn a bit towards optical discs.
 

Robert17

Premium Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
I vote up ATMINSIDE's thoughts. Discs tend to get scratches, flash doesn't. USB ports are pretty ubitquitous, disc drives generally are fading (I've yet to see a tablet, netbook or smart phone with a DVD drive, USBs on all of them). And the flash drives' firmware are allowing much faster R/W speeds with each generation. My 2¢.
 

saturn

Disabled
Joined
Dec 31, 2015
Most CD-r dvd-r and whatnot only last about 5-8 years before braking down. Don't know about blue rays.
Cheaper disks will not last even 2-3 years wile good disks will last up to 10years if your lucky. Good flash drives provided they don't get used much should last a life time. But they are can fail from a lot of things like ESD and and whatnot, but CD can get scratched.

Tape is the best way to back things up long term if you can care for them. I have 20 year old floppy's still in use my self.
If you ask my the best thing to do is have backups on multiple formats.
 

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
Optical disks degrade as was mentioned above. The best way for a consumer to do it (tape is really better for enterprise), is multiple formats... perhaps a HDD, Flash drive, Optical...
 

Janus67

Benching Team Leader
Joined
May 29, 2005
Use as many as you have available. Don't trust a single media or location to hold all of your backups. Flash drives just die, no warning. Optical media gets scratches and perm marker ink can cause bleed through issues. As I understand it blurays have a longer expected life time than cds or dvds
 

ATMINSIDE

Sim Racing Aficionado Co-Owner
Joined
Jun 28, 2012
As mentioned, my thinking is because the optical media will degrade over time.
 

caddi daddi

Godzilla to ant hills
Joined
Jan 10, 2012
cd's and dvd's degrade just sitting in a jewel case, if they see sun it's even faster. flash drives backed up to hdds looks like the way to go.
I work in four locations that can be far from each other and just starting to use the "cloud" for storage of stuff I need at all four, starting with dropbox, it works well enough but I might find some thing better as I learn a little more.
 

woboy

Member
Joined
Apr 14, 2011
Location
Waterbury, CT
Keeping flash drives safe and labeled can be a nuisance. I save my prescription bottles (of which I use a lot). It is easy to tape labels to or insert labels in orange plastic pill bottles. A plastic sealable case (10x14x6 vegetable) holds a good number and I can find and read my labels.
fwiw
 

JrClocker

AKA: JrMiyagi
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
Flash drive > DVD

DVDs go bad. Many new laptops do not come with DVD slot. Many new cases do not have external drive bays. However, you can always carry around a portable DVD drive.

Copy important stuff to multiple locations (multiple Flash drive, HDD, etc.)
 

TaCoSwInDeZ

Member
Joined
Nov 7, 2008
Location
Huntsville, Al
I prefer multiple formats and locations. For my most precious items (photos and music mostly) I have two copies on two separate hard drives as well as a 2TB external USB drive. I use microsoft Synctoy to make sure all folders are kept up to date with one another. I lost all my music once (only about 15 Gig's of MP3's at the time) and I swore never again would I have that happen so that's when I decided to have no less than 3 separate locations in case any 1 hard drive died I would have at least 2 more backups lol.
 

saturn

Disabled
Joined
Dec 31, 2015
Optical disks degrade as was mentioned above. The best way for a consumer to do it (tape is really better for enterprise), is multiple formats... perhaps a HDD, Flash drive, Optical...
Yeah tape is not the best for home users. Its more of a work place thing.

Also keep in mind that pressed disks will last longer then burned disks. But the glue will rot with age, the more layers the faster it will rot. This is however mostly a problem with double sided disks.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disc_rot