[rescue] Backups

Charles Shannon Hendrix shannon at widomaker.com
Fri Jun 24 21:25:05 CDT 2005

Stuff like this really should be in geeks.  In the past it seems like
you can never move discussions to the other list, but I'm crossposting
this one to geeks.

Tue, 21 Jun 2005 @ 14:04 -0400, Nadine said:

> Ouch.  I haven't done a lot of experimenting with media.  For the
> most part, I've been buying the cheap stuff, as I am using it more
> as "short term" storage more than anything else.  Except in the case
> of game backups, so I tend to use "name brand" for those.  I don't
> worry too much about the storage issues, as I don't tote them around
> outside the house, generally (just "disposable" mp3 disks that I toss
> music/audio books onto for road trips).

I actually would like for mine to live for awhile, because it is all I
have right now.

I do a lot of full backups onto CD, so I figure after doing this awhile,
I've got quite a lot of redundancy there.

What I'd really like to do is tie it together with an md5-keyed database
of files so I can find them easier.

> > Taiyo Yuden still make their media in Japan, and it is still reportedly
> > a consitently good buy.  Not sure if they made DVD media though.
> I've also read their's is the best.

Their CD media is the most compatible.  Supposedly the Phenyl* stuff is
more stable because it has metal in it.  I don't know if TY makes any
metal stabilized cyanine or not.

> Iirc there was some indication that some media worked better in
> some burners, too, so it really is a question of individual experi-
> mentation.  Tough to build a matrix for this kind of stuff, and be
> complete.

Each drive has a database of media descriptors with strategies for
burning them.  So does a lot of burning software.

The problem is that a company might buy a CD press (perhaps used) from
someone and fail to change the ID number.  If they don't do as good a
job, or run the machine long after it has worn out, it will fool the

> I do not have a first gen dual-layer Lite-On DVD burner.  Mine was
> purchased around 6 months ago.  I have not yet tested it's dual
> capabilities, but I have had no issues burning DVDs at this point.

Ah, it should have the newer burn chip in it.

> I've backed up a couple of things I own for testing, after removing
> the "extra" stuff to get it to fit on a single layer ("cheap"
> media). So far, they've worked fine in the handful of DVD players
> I've tried.  I haven't been able to test it for console backups--the
> consoles are not here.

I want very much to backup some games with *insane* copy protection.

Of course, usually what I do is buy a game and then use the pirate
utilities to disable the copy protection.  It's pretty bloody stupid to
have to get out a CD to use software that is on my hard drive.  That's
one big reason I have hard drives!

> Yeah.  I haven't spent much time looking into this. I've been
> avoiding spending excessive hours after work on my computers.

Me too... except that I haven't succeeded.

> > Kind of a hokey industry... you'd like to think they made it all work
> > before shipping...
> C'mon, you've been working in the computer industry long enough
> to know how unlikely that is!  (Sadly.)

Yeah, well...

Another issue with CD/DVD backups is that a lot of the rescued hardware
we like to play with can't use them, but can still use some fairly
recent tape drives.

I think it would be funny, just for kicks, to do something like
interface a CD burner to an older IBM mainframe.

Then write JCL to burn a CD calling "IEHBURN" with gobs of parameters to
control the operation.

shannon "AT" widomaker.com -- ["There is no such thing as security.  Life
is either bold adventure, or it is nothing -- Helen Keller"]

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