Archiving?

Like many here, I use an automated backup program to maintain copies of my music library on a couple of separate drives (one SSD and one HDD). I also use an online backup archive. However, I recently read an article advocating archiving to Blu-ray XL ‘M’ discs which can each store 100 GB and are said to be stable for many decades and thus suitable for archiving. The drives are inexpensive although the discs themselves are relatively pricey currently. For piece of mind backups of music libraries (and photo libraries), however, this could be a reasonable proposition: although I have kept all my CDs, and purchased downloads can be re-downloaded for as long as the vendors remain in business, re-ripping and re-downloading is a lengthy process whereas reconstituting a library from ten or twenty blu-ray discs should be less painful. What do the more tech-savvy forum members think? Anyone doing this currently?

Ask yourself what the future of silver discs is. Does it seem likely that in a decade you’ll be able to easily access a machine able to read said discs? Will said machine gave a ready supply of spares etc. Some people will be okay with the answer to that and some will not. It strikes me you’re trying to fix a problem you don’t really have. Two backups in different formats with maybe one offsite should be fine.

Personally I’ve three backups. All portable HDDs. One off site. All done manually at the end of the month simply because it’s easy to lose sight of automated processes and not notice when they’ve failed or corrupted. A simple reminder in my iOS tasks suffices.

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That’s going to take a long time to burn over many discs and changes will entail you to have to do it over again. It’s not well suited to differential backup.

In my case, 10TiB of music and images would take a silly number of discs.

Tape backup is definitely still popular in enterprises and very reliable. And supports differential archiving. But personally, I find a removable HDD just fine. Ever 5 years or so, I replace the cold backup disk. The cost to convenience ratio is hard to beat.

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Not necessarily, it depends how you store your music. I wouldn’t need to do it over again.

I store my music in folders labelled with the date the folder was created. Every six months or so, I create a new folder and only save music into that new folder. I only ever need to backup the latest folder, as all other folders are never modified. This obviously speeds up the backup process.

If I was archiving to DVD, as long as I only archived the folder that are never modified, I’d only need to do it once. :innocent:

I simply do multiple ‘backups’ to USB powered hard drives with 2.5" notebook size drives internally.

I admit my backup strategy is rather random instead of having identical backups on several drives.

Having burned so many CDs/DVDs over the years I really don’t think I could face backups to optical media with the potential for the burns to fail despite the good capacity of these newer optical discs.

WIth 4TB USB powered external costing less than £100 for many years, optical media would be a real step backwards for me.

One thing to consider perhaps is USB flash drives or high capacity SD cards.

I have a 500GB USB flash drive holding a lot of audio with plenty of space to spare plugged into my Nova, barely larger than my thumbnail.

Solid state storage solutions I think will be good options for audio/data though probably currently still poor for lots of video.

Online backup services are not really up to it for me cost/storage capacity wise as a consumer for media purchases - the plans will get cheaper but are still quite expensive, at least last time I looked. My FTTC broadband maxes out at just under 20 Mbps up which is also limiting though considerably faster than 10 years ago.

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Thanks all. To answer some of the points raised:

  • my expectation is that optical media will continue to be supported for the next decade plus.
  • the suggestion was to archive a music (and photo) library to optical media. In other words, on a periodic basis, new optical discs would be burned containing only the files added to the library since the last disc was burned. This is not a differential backup. It is an archive.
  • The driver behind this was a dawning appreciation of the fact that SSDs do not retain data indefinitely (they leak charge and can lose data well within a decade). HDDs are cheap but are statistically less reliable than SSDs.
    -The proposed Blu-ray XL ‘M’ disc solution is an option - but there are others as noted above.
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My current system backs up to a USB drive on my works PC (remote) and a local storage NAS; so it’s on three systems in total. When I’m no longer able to do remote backup to my office, I’ll probably switch over the AWS ‘Simple Storage Service’ as a once a month backup/sync.

I guess one has to measure effort vs payout. I really am at the stage in my life where if it all went belly up and I lost my music library I would probably shrug my shoulders and load up tidal.

This being said I have it in a number of locations, but I also acknowledge that in reality I probably listen to about 5% of it, with most of my listening coming from new stuff via tidal. I have not purchased a disk since David Bowies Blackstar, what was that 2016?

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Funnily enough I feel the same - I’d be annoyed but I have spent so many days, possibly months making backups of purchased audio/video along with CD rips/transcoding video from DVD/BluRay I own, and as you say ultimately only a small percentage is viewed or listened to.

For home I use a 3-2-3 strategy for all data backups including my music.

3 Data Copies - 1 working with 2 backups.

2 Media Types - HDD (Enterprise Class) and Optical.

3 Offsite - Optical (Stored at my parents house) and two cloud using AWS and Azure in different geographic locations.

Another consideration is to make sure you are not backing up corrupt data.