The Most common thing we want to know is How Can I Store My Pictures Forever ?
We all take untold number of pictures these days.
The prevalence of smartphones has turned photos into the most commonly lost data.
Your computer has permanent data storage on its internal hard drive.
Data is written onto the hard drive and remains there even when you shut your computer off and unplug it.
The more storage space (this is called ROM, or read-only memory) your device has, the more data can be stored on it.
This also means that the more memory your computer has, the more memory you will need to create backups of your data.
Old School Storage
If you want to go Old School, then you want printed copies.
Printed copies are effective because you have your information literally in your hands.
No power, no problem.
No internet or cloud access, no problem
There is a way to use this method effectively.
The worst way is to just print everything.
Even if you try to organize it, you will fail in the end.
Its just too much stuff.
Instead try this method.
First store everything on the cloud in folders.
Once a year go back thru and sort by last saved date.
Print the stuff that is less than one year old because these are files you use.
The catch is you need to decide what to do with photo’s as well.
Obviously these do not get updated.
We suggest memory sticks mainly.
Print the others you can.
All this being said, it doesn’t help with lost Pictures.
Every storage medium or type on any device eventually will be lost.
Why is this ?
Its the nature of the technology.
Devices fail, get broken or damaged and even if that doesn’t happen eventually nothing will be around to access that old format.
True Permanent storage is Old School.
Print the pictures. Store them in Albums.
Turn them from virtual to Physical Data and you will be able to have them forever.
This is part of the reason that cloud storage has become so popular.
Store your data in the cloud for little or no money, why would you go and buy expensive external hard drives or even flash drives?
If you can upload data to the cloud with one click, why would you spend time creating CD-ROMs full of data?
There are people who do not use cloud storage for certain types of data.
Some prefer to put their photos on CDs to maintain privacy and to lessen the chances of their data being accessed by unauthorized users.
Despite that storing data in the cloud is becoming the preferred method of data storage around the world.
When you are creating backups of your essential data, you will need to consider how long your chosen storage method will last.
In reality, most types of “long term” storage are only guaranteed to last for around five years.
Research the different types of storage and their projected life spans so that you will be aware of know when you will need to plan on replacing those methods.
Types of Storage
Using a super-expensive storage method that only has a three year life span may not be your number one choice.
Most external hard drives can be expected to function well for three to five years.
They may last longer, of course, but there is no guarantee of that.
CD ROMs and DVDs generally last between five and ten years, as long as they are not physically damaged.
Some of their lifespan depends on how much use they get.
The more you use them, the faster they develop problems with memory.
Blue-ray discs are much longer-lasting.
There doesn’t seem to be much consensus on exactly how long they will last.
Some say that a blue-ray disc will last twenty years.
They Can not scratched or exposed to direct sunlight or high temperatures.
As long as they are properly stored, these may be a good investment.
Flash storage – also known as thumb drives, flash drives, or USB sticks – will usually last up to ten years if properly stored.
It is important to remember about flash storage is that the more times you delete data and install other data (this is commonly called a write-cycle) the more the memory becomes degraded and the more glitches you can expect.
M-discs, or millennium-discs will last forever, but its not know if your Data also survives.
Since they only came into use in 2009, there is no way to verify that as of yet.
The company that makes the M-Disc states that they believe the discs will store data for 1000 years.
I hope humanity is still around in the year 3019 to determine the truth of that statement!
In the end, no data storage method (possibly short of chiseling your data into stone ) is truly permanent.
No matter what method you choose, you will need to do regular updates.
Copy data onto more than one type of storage media.
Never trust precious data to only one storage method.
The best method is to maintain our own stored data.
Keep track of the latest trends in data storage technology .
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