DVD or Thumb Drive?

We get this question all the time these days. “Should I have my 8mm films or videotapes transferred to DVD or Thumb Drive”?

Our response is: “Thumb Drive“!

A few years ago everyone had a DVD player in the living room or in their computer. Not any more. Computer manufacturers stopped including them either to save money, or to force you to buy another of their products. However DVD players are still available as a stand-alone plugin unit and some stores still sell cheap DVD players. BUT… is it worth the money to buy one?

We ask: “Do you watch tv or movies on your computer? Do you store your music or movie files in the cloud?”

USB Flash Drive

Transferring your media to a thumb drive is your best choice these days. It provides the convenience of easily sharing it with family or friends or online. It’s on a media device that you can plug into any computer. The files are in a universal mp4 format that PC’s and Mac’s can read. Best of all the price of thumb drives have come down. Shop around because we buy them in bulk and might be able to give you a better price.

Editors Note: Please read our post: “How long will a USB Flash Drive retain its data when unplugged“?
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How long will a USB Flash Drive retain its data when unplugged?

USB Flash Drive

Most manufacturers claim their flash drives will retain their contents for at least 10 years, but there are a number of variables that can shorten that time span.

If the flash drive was new when you copied the data onto it, it should be safe for at least most of those estimated 10 years.

If the drive was used however, I wouldn’t count it it lasting more than one-half to two-thirds of that time. Also, keeping the drive stored in a cool, dry location will help maximize the life of the data stored on it.

If your data is really important to you, I would back it up onto a second USB drive and give it to another family member or a trusted friend (who doesn’t live in the same house) for safekeeping. And after a few years you can transfer them to a new USB drive.

That way if one drive becomes lost, damaged or simply stops working you’ll have spares tucked away that you can use to retrieve those precious files.

Better yet, you could buy several thumb drives and hand them out to various trusted friends and relatives. After all, they are quite inexpensive these days.

A couple of other long-term storage options that I recommend are burning your data onto blank DVDs and/or uploading them to the cloud or one of the many free online storage services that are available these days.

When it comes to safely storing files that you simply cannot afford to lose, it’s wise to always do two things:

1 – Store at least one additional backup in another physical location.

2 – Keep multiple backup sets (in the form of USB drives, external hard drives, CD’s or online cloud storage services).

Source: Rick’s Daily Tips
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