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OT: long term backup of media to hard drive

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Nickel
OT: long term backup of media to hard drive
on Jul 3, 2007 at 3:26:47 am

Hi. I know this is OT but this is the most helpful forum on the COW. I was wondering if anyone has been backing up their media, projects, etc. to hard drives for long term storage. If so, do you recommend a particular drive? Hard drives have gotten to be so inexpensive it seems silly to spend time dumping projects to removeable media. Of course, the long term viability of the drive would be an issue. Thanks for any insights.


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Michael Slowe
Re: OT: long term backup of media to hard drive
on Jul 3, 2007 at 9:25:33 am

I happened to have a LaCie d2 Fire Wire Hard Drive so am storing a copy of a 29 minute film. The production is in uncompressed 1920x1080i and fits on the drive OK but I did have problems bringing it back to my Media 100. I seem to remember having to re make some mixes and titles etc. I would not like to have to rely on this drive for archiving the only master, I don't think a LaCie would be reliable enough but in future that will have to be the archive system when we are all tapeless I imagine.


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Kieran Matthew
Re: OT: long term backup of media to hard drive
on Jul 3, 2007 at 10:33:19 am

Hi Nickel,

For the last three years I have been storing all the media from my projects on portable harddrives. I discovered that most of my clients want to constantly update projects - making a tweak here, changing a grpahic there - so this has been invaluable.

I also had a bad experience with the first generation of recordable DVDs where the discs blanked themselves wiping out a year's worth of work. So compared with that, the harddrives are reliable enough for me.

I use whatever hardrive is on offer at the time, mainly Western Digital and the like, but check that they offer a suitable guarantee. I use 320Gb drives as I feel that they are resonably mature technology now, and if one were to fail, the loss would be more acceptable than say 500 or 750Gb - eggs and baskets so to speak. Critical media is backed-up to two different drives, and I always store the project files separately on CD off-site.

For my own sanity I check the drives regularly and move the data around.

HTH

K


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Nick Griffin
Re: OT: long term backup of media to hard drive
on Jul 3, 2007 at 5:58:15 pm

I've been doing this for a couple of years now using very low cost "bare" drives moved in and out of a cheap external drive housing. Mind you we don't do this with every job, just the ones which as Kieran describes get tweeked now and then. As for safety, the most critical jobs live on two separate drives. That, and powering up the drives once every 6 months, is probably a fairly safe strategy.

Oh, and Michael - I don't believe that LaCie makes drives. I believe that they simply package drives in their own housings. Personally I have no idea which drives are more or less reliable, but I feel reasonably safe using Seagate Baracudas.


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Nickel
Re: OT: long term backup of media to hard drive
on Jul 3, 2007 at 7:30:45 pm

Hi. Thanks to all for the feedback. I'm curious - what does powering up every 6 months or moving the data around do for the drive?


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Nick Griffin
Re: OT: long term backup of media to hard drive
on Jul 3, 2007 at 8:30:03 pm

I power up just to keep the drives semi-active. But this is NOT based on any science or actual functional knowledge whatsoever. Love to hear from someone who knows facts on this. Maybe the drives should be spun once a month or once a year.

Your second question is far easier. Moving the data around means that it's re-written and therefore would be made up of stronger magnetic fields. I believe that hard drives utilize some degree of redundancy to overcome small faults in the data. Re-writing the data every few months/years/whatever would therefore make the data more reliable. I also have to assume that this would ideally mean writing to a new (or newly formatted) drive.

But, as stated above I'm no drive science expert. I know more about how drives are marketed than how they work inside.


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Videoguy
Re: OT: long term backup of media to hard drive
on Jul 4, 2007 at 5:36:02 pm

If memory serves me correct, hard drives can suffer from a long term effect called stickion (not sure on the spelling). When inactive for a long period, the motor can refuse to start up. Sometimes a little bump can get it started, sometimes not. It is suggested that you power up a drive once or twice a year to help prevent this. Whether this is a problem with current made drives, I'm not sure.


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