[conspire] DVD as backup media

Greg Dougherty gregd at molecularsoftware.com
Sun Aug 10 23:36:52 PDT 2003

The problem is that a tape drive with reasonable capacity just costs too damn
much, so it leads people to look for any alternatives.


On 8/10/03, Rick Moen <rick at linuxmafia.com> writes:

> Just posting some comments I made to a friend in private mail.
> > I am sure that your next machine will have a dvd burner. When you
> > consider that a dvd holds over 6 times as much as a cd, it makes
> > a great backup and think of how many fewer disks it would take
> > to hold all those different cd's full of distros you have.
> I suspect DVDs make good archival media but really dreadful backup
> media, for pretty much exactly the reasons that CDR[W] have been a dumb 
> choice before them:  Prices for DVD-R media seem variable and subject to
> gimmicky conditions, but generally run about $1 per disk in bulk, give
> or take.  Full-size DVD-RW media seem to run about $3 per disk in bulk.
> Experience with CDRW suggests that erasure is slow and doesn't work
> properly very many times in a row.
> DDS3 tape media are cheaper per gigabyte at acquisition and have vastly
> greater service life.  Also, backup software is capable of cataloguing
> contents of backup sets on those tapes such that you can restore
> specific files as of specific dates, at will -- but not for DVD-R[W].
> People are forever suggesting completely unsuitable and/or uneconomical 
> media for backup.  This used to surprise me, but doesn't any more.  The
> common thread seems to be that the person making the suggestion owns
> hardware that makes that kind of backup physically possible, and isn't
> really familiar enough with real backup economics and logistics to see
> why it's a non-starter.
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