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Need advice on external storage device for videos

by jigjoe / February 24, 2013 12:01 AM PST

Hi. I have dozens of home video cassettes/dvds and also photos I'd like to back up onto an external storage device for long term storage and safe keeping. Some of the film on the cassettes are starting to tear when they are played so I'd like to keep a digital copy of everything and in one place.

Any recommendations on brands would be appreciated. I think 1 TB would be enough but I wouldn't want anything lower than that. Thanks

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Best Answer chosen by jigjoe

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WD or Seagate
by wpgwpg / February 24, 2013 12:09 AM PST

I think either Western Digital or Seagate would serve you well. The 2 TB drives aren't that much more expensive these days, so you might want to consider them. You should also use it for making full system backups. You can use the free program Easeus Todo Backup Free, which you can download from .

Good luck.

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by jigjoe / February 24, 2013 12:32 AM PST
In reply to: WD or Seagate

Thanks I'll check those out!

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1. That's not storage.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / February 24, 2013 12:10 AM PST

The CNET Storage forum is full of folk trying to recover their stuff from external drives.

2. No.
Let's keep this simple. There is no model that is "storage" as you define it. You can take your chances by not having backup copies. but that's your choice and you would live by your decision.

1TB drives are plentiful.

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by jigjoe / February 24, 2013 12:40 AM PST
In reply to: 1. That's not storage.

Maybe I misunderstood you or maybe you misunderstood me but I'm looking for an external drive to put stuff on, not take stuff off.

Not sure I understand your 2nd point. I WANT to make backups of my videos/photos.

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There are a lot of fine 1TB drives.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / February 24, 2013 12:55 AM PST
In reply to: Huh

All of them let you put stuff on them. But folk often mistake them as "storage" and forget that if there is no backup copy, there is no backup copy.

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Just to be clear..
by jigjoe / February 24, 2013 1:26 AM PST

Ok I think I see what you're saying. So in addition to backing them up on an external drive, you recommend backing them up on another device as well? If so, what do you recommend? Another hard drive? DVDs? Sorry if I'm not getting it. I'm not too tech savvy

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For stuff I can't lose.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / February 24, 2013 1:38 AM PST
In reply to: Just to be clear..

I have 3 external HDDs. They all get synced every few months when I get around to it. However stuff I can't lose is done more often.

Then I have a select group that is on DropBox and if you understand how that works, the content syncs to the office machines, my personal laptop and what's there is "Hard To Kill."

Finally a couple of memory sticks/cards have the digital photo collect which is stuff I must never lose.

YOU have to make the decision how many copies to keep but in the old IT school the number was 3. If you had one of the backups fail, you had 2 to fall back on and would arrange to get a new device or tape back into the rotation.

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by jigjoe / February 24, 2013 1:53 AM PST

Thank you that was very helpful.

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If by storing/storage you mean moving/having the only copy
by VAPCMD / February 24, 2013 12:36 AM PST

of your dozens of home video cassettes/dvds and also photos on an external hard drive....I'll look for you future posts here saying something like 'I can't access my dozens of home video cassettes/dvds on my external drive.....can anyone help ????? Please help !!!

If you truly want to protect the information identified for future use/reference, then you'll need to create a backup plan with multiple copies of the data on stable media including a copy in a different/offsite location.

If you doubt the information provided only need look further though this and other forums regarding data storage/file recovery or backup and the time, energy, effort and money spent to recover it.


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by jigjoe / February 24, 2013 12:47 AM PST

Oh ok so an external hard drive is not efficient for this? I don't know much about backup/file storage which is why I'm here in the first place. What is considered "stable media" besides putting everything on stacks of dvds?

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Might be efficient, simple and easy but . . .
by VAPCMD / February 24, 2013 9:33 AM PST
In reply to: po

long term it's just not reliable as evidenced by the multitude of posts about external drives or drive access failures here, there and everywhere. It's "A" way to store data but should NEVER EVER be the only media for DATA SORAGE or BACKUP unless of course you don't really need/want the data. Externals are by nature less reliable by incorporating cables . . .USB or eSATA, enclosures with logic boards, power adapters and additional handling that makes them more susceptible to inadvertent damage.

So the idea is to have the data and multiple copies of the data including copies on other media and potentially multiple locations. Frankly speaking I always have an internal HDD as my first backup because the transfer/backup is way more reliable than external drives. From there it's 2nd or 3rd external HDDs and some offsite storage. The more precious the data...the better backup you need.


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