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Windows 7: Generally speaking, how LONG??

19 Oct 2010   #1
SevenNerd

Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 
Generally speaking, how LONG??

How long can a hard drive retain data?
I'm not talking about constant use here. Lets say I buy a brand new drive, throw a few files on it and then set the drive aside for 50 years. Will the data still be there? It's use that destroys hDs not time? or


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19 Oct 2010   #2
zigzag3143

Win 8 Release candidate 8400
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by SevenNerd View Post
How long can a hard drive retain data?
I'm not talking about constant use here. Lets say I buy a brand new drive, throw a few files on it and then set the drive aside for 50 years. Will the data still be there? It's use that destroys hDs not time? or
Data is stored as magnetic impulses which degrade over time. Use does damage a HD but so does time. usually the MTBF (mean time between failure) value is an indication of how long.


Ken J
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19 Oct 2010   #3
SledgeDG

Windows 7 Ultimate x86
 
 

I would think the life time would significantly improved if you could hang the drive on a computer like every 2 years or so, shift some data around, run a defrag so the magnetizing would be refreshed.
If you store that drive right (cool and dry) it certainly outlasts every Tape/CD/DVD/Flash drive.

-DG
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19 Oct 2010   #4
mikedl

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

I think your biggest issue might manifest itself in the incapability of obtaining proper hardware and drivers to read your stored disc in the distant future.

The information on a stored HDD might outlive you but I wouldn't trust its veracity after more than 10 years.

As far as DVD's go, I've read claims from manufacturers of a life span between 30 and 100 years.
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19 Oct 2010   #5
GeneO

Windows 10 Pro. EFI boot partition, full EFI boot
 
 

+=1.

You will have to refresh your hardware way sooner than 50 years or you won;t be able to read it on anything. I wouldn't trust any optical media that uses dye for any period. Your best bet right now is to use the latest magnetic technology - disk or tape, make two copies, and refresh it every 5 years.

Gene
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19 Oct 2010   #6
karlsnooks

MS Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-bit
 
 

Ask the manufacturer.
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 Generally speaking, how LONG??




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