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Proper location for long term storage?

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January 21, 2005 11:11:00 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

I have been keeping my very valuable disks, both program and data, in a
"fireproof" safe in my apartment - but far away from the computer and
regular usb backup drives.

The safe, which also had a sizable quantity of cash stored there, has
become damp and musty. A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.

Obviously, this is not a good system as I'm under an impression that
disks should not get damp :-)

Is it really better to keep valuable disks in a safe or would it be just
as good to keep them on a bookcase shelf?

Louise
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 21, 2005 11:11:01 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

I think the better plan is to just give me the musty, stinky, moldy
cash. Viola, your problem is solved.

Irwin
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 21, 2005 11:11:01 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

In article <MPG.1c5b2df058691b879897c9@news-server.nyc.rr.com>,
Louise <none@nospam.com> wrote:
>I have been keeping my very valuable disks, both program and data, in a
>"fireproof" safe in my apartment - but far away from the computer and
>regular usb backup drives.
>
>The safe, which also had a sizable quantity of cash stored there, has
>become damp and musty. A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
>which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.
>
>Obviously, this is not a good system as I'm under an impression that
>disks should not get damp :-)
>
>Is it really better to keep valuable disks in a safe or would it be just
>as good to keep them on a bookcase shelf?
>
>Louise
>


Inexpensive document safes are frequently intended to protect only
documents and are based on chemistry that emits water in a fire and
the ducuments, after a fire, are safe but damp. It sounds like you
might have one of these. These boxes destroy tapes and CDs in a fire.

You shoud have multiple copies of your backups and one set shuould
be taken of-site. Taking them home, from work, or vice versa.

backups should be stored in reasonably constant temp and humidity.

It isn't rocket science.


--

a d y k e s @ p a n i x . c o m

Don't blame me. I voted for Gore.
Related resources
January 22, 2005 1:38:25 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

"Louise" <none@nospam.com> wrote in message
news:MPG.1c5b2df058691b879897c9@news-server.nyc.rr.com...
>I have been keeping my very valuable disks, both program and data, in a
> "fireproof" safe in my apartment - but far away from the computer and
> regular usb backup drives.
>
> The safe, which also had a sizable quantity of cash stored there, has
> become damp and musty. A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
> which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.
>
> Obviously, this is not a good system as I'm under an impression that
> disks should not get damp :-)
>
> Is it really better to keep valuable disks in a safe or would it be just
> as good to keep them on a bookcase shelf?


Buy a large bag of Cat Litter Crystals/Silica Gel, fill a few old socks and
put them in the safe. Dry the crystals out in an oven every so often as
required - or find out where the dampness is coming from.
January 22, 2005 4:20:31 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

In article <1106340909.661393.41160@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com>,
ebct@hotmail.com says...
> I think the better plan is to just give me the musty, stinky, moldy
> cash. Viola, your problem is solved.
>
> Irwin
>
>
Why didn't I think of that :-)

Louise
January 22, 2005 4:36:21 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

In article <css2hd$l6n$1@panix5.panix.com>, adykes@panix.com says...
> In article <MPG.1c5b2df058691b879897c9@news-server.nyc.rr.com>,
> Louise <none@nospam.com> wrote:
> >I have been keeping my very valuable disks, both program and data, in a
> >"fireproof" safe in my apartment - but far away from the computer and
> >regular usb backup drives.
> >
> >The safe, which also had a sizable quantity of cash stored there, has
> >become damp and musty. A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
> >which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.
> >
> >Obviously, this is not a good system as I'm under an impression that
> >disks should not get damp :-)
> >
> >Is it really better to keep valuable disks in a safe or would it be just
> >as good to keep them on a bookcase shelf?
> >
> >Louise
> >
>
>
> Inexpensive document safes are frequently intended to protect only
> documents and are based on chemistry that emits water in a fire and
> the ducuments, after a fire, are safe but damp. It sounds like you
> might have one of these. These boxes destroy tapes and CDs in a fire.
>
> You shoud have multiple copies of your backups and one set shuould
> be taken of-site. Taking them home, from work, or vice versa.
>
> backups should be stored in reasonably constant temp and humidity.
>
> It isn't rocket science.
>
>
>
Major problem is that home and work are in the same location. Therefore
very frequent offsite updates are not practical.

The safe is a Sentry made for the home/office. They say "2 hour fire
protection" and "water resistant".
http://www.sentrysafe.com/Products.asp?m=A3810

How would I know whether it is designed to emit water - they certainly
don't say anything to indicate that and they do say it's water
resistant.

Although a bookcase would provide relative temperature and humidity
constancy living in the northeast does present temperature and humidity
changes. It also provides absolutely no fire protection.

Louise
January 22, 2005 4:46:58 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

[This followup was posted to comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage and a copy
was sent to the cited author.]

In article <css2hd$l6n$1@panix5.panix.com>, adykes@panix.com says...
> In article <MPG.1c5b2df058691b879897c9@news-server.nyc.rr.com>,
> Louise <none@nospam.com> wrote:
> >I have been keeping my very valuable disks, both program and data, in a
> >"fireproof" safe in my apartment - but far away from the computer and
> >regular usb backup drives.
> >
> >The safe, which also had a sizable quantity of cash stored there, has
> >become damp and musty. A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
> >which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.
> >
> >Obviously, this is not a good system as I'm under an impression that
> >disks should not get damp :-)
> >
> >Is it really better to keep valuable disks in a safe or would it be just
> >as good to keep them on a bookcase shelf?
> >
> >Louise
> >
>
>
> Inexpensive document safes are frequently intended to protect only
> documents and are based on chemistry that emits water in a fire and
> the ducuments, after a fire, are safe but damp. It sounds like you
> might have one of these. These boxes destroy tapes and CDs in a fire.
>
> You shoud have multiple copies of your backups and one set shuould
> be taken of-site. Taking them home, from work, or vice versa.
>
> backups should be stored in reasonably constant temp and humidity.
>
> It isn't rocket science.
>
>
>
I just found more information on the Sentry Safe site about how they
work:
"Next, the double walls filled with Survivacast® shield the contents
from the heat of the fire. Survivacast is an insulation that
encapsulates water. As the water converts to gas in the heat of the
fire, an endothermic reaction occurs which absorbs the heat."

Is this the water-emitting chemistry you were referring to? If so...the
answer seems clear - this is NOT good fire protection

Thanks for your help.

Louise
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 22, 2005 12:08:48 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

In article <MPG.1c5b781ba7a432c49897cc@news-server.nyc.rr.com>,
Louise <none@nospam.com> wrote:
>In article <css2hd$l6n$1@panix5.panix.com>, adykes@panix.com says...
>> In article <MPG.1c5b2df058691b879897c9@news-server.nyc.rr.com>,
>> Louise <none@nospam.com> wrote:
>> >I have been keeping my very valuable disks, both program and data, in a
>> >"fireproof" safe in my apartment - but far away from the computer and
>> >regular usb backup drives.
>> >
>> >The safe, which also had a sizable quantity of cash stored there, has
>> >become damp and musty. A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
>> >which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.
>> >
>> >Obviously, this is not a good system as I'm under an impression that
>> >disks should not get damp :-)
>> >
>> >Is it really better to keep valuable disks in a safe or would it be just
>> >as good to keep them on a bookcase shelf?
>> >
>> >Louise
>> >
>>
>>
>> Inexpensive document safes are frequently intended to protect only
>> documents and are based on chemistry that emits water in a fire and
>> the ducuments, after a fire, are safe but damp. It sounds like you
>> might have one of these. These boxes destroy tapes and CDs in a fire.
>>
>> You shoud have multiple copies of your backups and one set shuould
>> be taken of-site. Taking them home, from work, or vice versa.
>>
>> backups should be stored in reasonably constant temp and humidity.
>>
>> It isn't rocket science.
>>
>>
>>
>Major problem is that home and work are in the same location. Therefore
>very frequent offsite updates are not practical.
>
>The safe is a Sentry made for the home/office. They say "2 hour fire
>protection" and "water resistant".
>http://www.sentrysafe.com/Products.asp?m=A3810
>


>HOW would I know whether it is designed to emit water - they certainly
>don't say anything to indicate that and they do say it's water
>resistant.
>
>Although a bookcase would provide relative temperature and humidity
>constancy living in the northeast does present temperature and humidity
>changes. It also provides absolutely no fire protection.
>
>Louise

If you RTFM for the product you'll find that the manufacturer
specifically says NOT INTENDED FOR COMPUTER MEDIA. That would be a
clue.

A house is not particularly good for humidity unless an expensive
humidy control system is installed and used. You'd know if you had one
by the electric bill. Unless you use year-round HVAC there is too much
temp variation.

A bank safe deposit box is good. Bank vaults have a controlled
environment.

--

a d y k e s @ p a n i x . c o m

Don't blame me. I voted for Gore.
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 22, 2005 1:05:41 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

Louise <none@nospam.com> wrote in message
news:MPG.1c5b2df058691b879897c9@news-server.nyc.rr.com...

> I have been keeping my very valuable disks, both program
> and data, in a "fireproof" safe in my apartment - but far
> away from the computer and regular usb backup drives.

> The safe, which also had a sizable quantity of cash stored there, has
> become damp and musty. A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the
> safe which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.

Is that because its laundered money ? |-)

> Obviously, this is not a good system as I'm under
> an impression that disks should not get damp :-)

Yeah, you can even get mould growth.

> Is it really better to keep valuable disks in a safe

Better to have some fire resistance.

Obviously better offsite for that tho.

> or would it be just as good to keep them on a bookcase shelf?

Not for fire or theft.
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 22, 2005 1:14:32 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

Louise wrote:
> I have been keeping my very valuable disks, both program and data, in a
> "fireproof" safe in my apartment - but far away from the computer and
> regular usb backup drives.
>
> The safe, which also had a sizable quantity of cash stored there, has
> become damp and musty. A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
> which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.
>
> Obviously, this is not a good system as I'm under an impression that
> disks should not get damp :-)
>
> Is it really better to keep valuable disks in a safe or would it be just
> as good to keep them on a bookcase shelf?
>
> Louise
>

Why not dry out the safe by using bags of dessicant? And, 60% R.H. is
well within the non-operating specs for typical HDs.
--
Cheers, Bob
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 22, 2005 1:23:09 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

In article <Q4-dnWDDT-zT82_cRVn-vA@comcast.com>,
Bob Willard <BobwBSGS@TrashThis.comcast.net> wrote:
>Louise wrote:
>> I have been keeping my very valuable disks, both program and data, in a
>> "fireproof" safe in my apartment - but far away from the computer and
>> regular usb backup drives.
>>
>> The safe, which also had a sizable quantity of cash stored there, has
>> become damp and musty. A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
>> which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.
>>
>> Obviously, this is not a good system as I'm under an impression that
>> disks should not get damp :-)
>>
>> Is it really better to keep valuable disks in a safe or would it be just
>> as good to keep them on a bookcase shelf?
>>
>> Louise
>>
>
>Why not dry out the safe by using bags of dessicant? And, 60% R.H. is
>well within the non-operating specs for typical HDs.
>--
>Cheers, Bob

If these safes are in a fire it's as if the contents were
steam-cleaned. Papers are OK but disks and tapes have been subject to
extreme heat and humidity combination. To obsess over storage and then
buy the wrong product isn't really productive.

--

a d y k e s @ p a n i x . c o m

Don't blame me. I voted for Gore.
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 22, 2005 5:19:27 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

Previously Louise <none@nospam.com> wrote:
> [This followup was posted to comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage and a copy
> was sent to the cited author.]
[...]
> I just found more information on the Sentry Safe site about how they
> work:
> "Next, the double walls filled with Survivacast® shield the contents
> from the heat of the fire. Survivacast is an insulation that
> encapsulates water. As the water converts to gas in the heat of the
> fire, an endothermic reaction occurs which absorbs the heat."

> Is this the water-emitting chemistry you were referring to? If so...the
> answer seems clear - this is NOT good fire protection

> Thanks for your help.

One option would be to get an extra safe for the data carriers,
one that is intended to be used for data carrier storage.

They will be tested differently for fireproofness, as paper
can stand much higher temperatures without being damaged.
Storage devices are also sensitive to smoke, another thing
that does not bother paper.

Arno
--
For email address: lastname AT tik DOT ee DOT ethz DOT ch
GnuPG: ID:1E25338F FP:0C30 5782 9D93 F785 E79C 0296 797F 6B50 1E25 338F
"The more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws" - Tacitus
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 22, 2005 5:19:28 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

In article <35f5nfF4mo4qnU1@individual.net>,
Arno Wagner <me@privacy.net> wrote:
>Previously Louise <none@nospam.com> wrote:
>> [This followup was posted to comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage and a copy
>> was sent to the cited author.]
>[...]
>> I just found more information on the Sentry Safe site about how they
>> work:
>> "Next, the double walls filled with Survivacast® shield the contents
>> from the heat of the fire. Survivacast is an insulation that
>> encapsulates water. As the water converts to gas in the heat of the
>> fire, an endothermic reaction occurs which absorbs the heat."
>
>> Is this the water-emitting chemistry you were referring to? If so...the
>> answer seems clear - this is NOT good fire protection
>
>> Thanks for your help.
>
>One option would be to get an extra safe for the data carriers,
>one that is intended to be used for data carrier storage.
>
>They will be tested differently for fireproofness, as paper
>can stand much higher temperatures without being damaged.
>Storage devices are also sensitive to smoke, another thing
>that does not bother paper.
>
>Arno
>--
>For email address: lastname AT tik DOT ee DOT ethz DOT ch
>GnuPG: ID:1E25338F FP:0C30 5782 9D93 F785 E79C 0296 797F 6B50 1E25 338F
> "The more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws" - Tacitus
>
>


Companies that sell computer supplies to businesses have media storage
products in thier catalogs. I do't get those catalogs anymore, but Global
and Inmac are brands that come to mind. Here are some data storage products.

http://www.inmac.co.uk/catalogue/office%20supplies/Stor...

They have, I recall, lots of boxes that look like suitcases with various
enviromental ratings for computer media storage.

You can use these descriptions as a start for a google for other brands.

If you look up "safes" in the yellow pages for a big city you'll find
companies that sell big safes but would at least know what you were
talking about if you call them to see what they had to offer for your
needs.

I'd assume a 2-hour data-grade box would survive 99% of the residental
total fires.


If what you are storing is personal I'd get a safe deposit box at the
bank I did business with. If it's a small business I'd just put the
daily backup tape in my jacket pocket so it went home with me each
night, getting it offsite.

For business, using tapes, if you rotate media on a weekly/monthly
cycle then environemntal issues are not an issue as the data is
written freshly each time, and readback verification will warn you if
you have a problem.

Ambient conditions begin to be important after a year or more, and for
business you need a serious discussin with your accuountant or lawyer
as to what data to keep and for how long before you spend bucks
on a vault.
--

a d y k e s @ p a n i x . c o m

Don't blame me. I voted for Gore.
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 23, 2005 11:51:51 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

"Louise" <none@nospam.com> wrote in message
news:MPG.1c5b2df058691b879897c9@news-server.nyc.rr.com...

> A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
> which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.

You can get silica in cloth packets designed to absorb moisture. Put one of
these in a clear plastic box and leave the lid off. Check water level when
putting more into safe.

Try local photographic shop for a source. Also used to dry flowers...

http://www.romwell.com/books/craft/SilicaGel.htm
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 23, 2005 11:51:52 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

In article <HAJId.2398$JI4.288892@phobos.telenet-ops.be>,
CWatters <colin.watters@pandoraBOX.be> wrote:
>
>"Louise" <none@nospam.com> wrote in message
>news:MPG.1c5b2df058691b879897c9@news-server.nyc.rr.com...
>
>> A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
>> which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.
>
>You can get silica in cloth packets designed to absorb moisture. Put one of
>these in a clear plastic box and leave the lid off. Check water level when
>putting more into safe.
>
>Try local photographic shop for a source. Also used to dry flowers...
>
>http://www.romwell.com/books/craft/SilicaGel.htm
>
>


60% humidity is fine. It's the variation that's a problem
with archival storage. FOr the long term it Silica
would have nno effect on RH, once it saturated.

If we are talking about inexpensive document safes, in a fire the
chemicals emit large amounts of water and saturate the contents.
Add heat and stir.

--

a d y k e s @ p a n i x . c o m

Don't blame me. I voted for Gore.
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 23, 2005 6:18:25 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

In article <cstmpg$fvi$1@panix5.panix.com>, Al Dykes <adykes@panix.com>
writes
>In article <MPG.1c5b781ba7a432c49897cc@news-server.nyc.rr.com>,
>Louise <none@nospam.com> wrote:

snip

>>Major problem is that home and work are in the same location. Therefore
>>very frequent offsite updates are not practical.
>>
>>The safe is a Sentry made for the home/office. They say "2 hour fire
>>protection" and "water resistant".
>>http://www.sentrysafe.com/Products.asp?m=A3810
>>
>
>
>>HOW would I know whether it is designed to emit water - they certainly
>>don't say anything to indicate that and they do say it's water
>>resistant.
>>
>>Although a bookcase would provide relative temperature and humidity
>>constancy living in the northeast does present temperature and humidity
>>changes. It also provides absolutely no fire protection.
>>
>>Louise
>
>If you RTFM for the product you'll find that the manufacturer
>specifically says NOT INTENDED FOR COMPUTER MEDIA. That would be a
>clue.
>
>A house is not particularly good for humidity unless an expensive
>humidy control system is installed and used. You'd know if you had one
>by the electric bill. Unless you use year-round HVAC there is too much
>temp variation.
>
>A bank safe deposit box is good. Bank vaults have a controlled
>environment.
>

Backups to be effective have to have a proper rotation between (at
least) father, son and grandfather, with at least an element of off-site
storage.

Backups have to be done regularly and restores tested on a regular
basis.

How much you spend depends upon what it would cost you if you lost your
data.

I know of one company that did the risk assessment and found that it
would be out of business immediately if it lost its data. Spent a lot
of money on a large (you could have hidden the IT department staff
inside the safe) fire proof safe designed for data storage, with a
large margin of for the period of fire and water that it had to survive.
This was in the days of EDS disks, you know, 11 large dinner plate
platters mounted on a spindle and when removed encased in a clear
plastic cover. The Honeywell system did not provide for tape storage,
EDS would be fine even for back up.

One assumes that the safe and disks survived the fire and the fireman's
water, but they did not survive the descent from the 5th floor IT suite
to the lower basement, nor did the disks.

I have heard rumours, but it could be an urban myth, that some companies
had their IT sites and their off site storage in each of the twin
towers.

The lesson is to run a proper rotation of back-ups, do it frequently and
rotate the media between off-site and on-site. Your off-site store
should be far enough away that a single event will not wipe out your
site and the off-line site. The off-site must not be so far away as to
discourage the regular rotation. You may therefore be able to come to
an agreement with a friend who lives reasonable close by that you
provide off-site storage for each other.

Then you may not need to keep the back-ups in a fire proof safe. You
may need to keep them secure if the data, is sensitive or would be
valuable to some person of evil intent if they got hold of the data.

--
Nicholas David Richards -

"Où sont les neiges d'antan?"
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 23, 2005 6:18:26 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

In article <O5QYvXABB88BFAMt@salmiron.co.uk>,
Nicholas D Richards <nicholas@salmiron.demon.co.uk> wrote:
>In article <cstmpg$fvi$1@panix5.panix.com>, Al Dykes <adykes@panix.com>
>writes
>>In article <MPG.1c5b781ba7a432c49897cc@news-server.nyc.rr.com>,
>>Louise <none@nospam.com> wrote:
>
>snip
>
>>>Major problem is that home and work are in the same location. Therefore
>>>very frequent offsite updates are not practical.
>>>
>>>The safe is a Sentry made for the home/office. They say "2 hour fire
>>>protection" and "water resistant".
>>>http://www.sentrysafe.com/Products.asp?m=A3810
>>>
>>
>>
>>>HOW would I know whether it is designed to emit water - they certainly
>>>don't say anything to indicate that and they do say it's water
>>>resistant.
>>>
>>>Although a bookcase would provide relative temperature and humidity
>>>constancy living in the northeast does present temperature and humidity
>>>changes. It also provides absolutely no fire protection.
>>>
>>>Louise
>>
>>If you RTFM for the product you'll find that the manufacturer
>>specifically says NOT INTENDED FOR COMPUTER MEDIA. That would be a
>>clue.
>>
>>A house is not particularly good for humidity unless an expensive
>>humidy control system is installed and used. You'd know if you had one
>>by the electric bill. Unless you use year-round HVAC there is too much
>>temp variation.
>>
>>A bank safe deposit box is good. Bank vaults have a controlled
>>environment.
>>
>
>Backups to be effective have to have a proper rotation between (at
>least) father, son and grandfather, with at least an element of off-site
>storage.
>
>Backups have to be done regularly and restores tested on a regular
>basis.
>
>How much you spend depends upon what it would cost you if you lost your
>data.
>
>I know of one company that did the risk assessment and found that it
>would be out of business immediately if it lost its data. Spent a lot
>of money on a large (you could have hidden the IT department staff
>inside the safe) fire proof safe designed for data storage, with a
>large margin of for the period of fire and water that it had to survive.
>This was in the days of EDS disks, you know, 11 large dinner plate
>platters mounted on a spindle and when removed encased in a clear
>plastic cover. The Honeywell system did not provide for tape storage,
>EDS would be fine even for back up.
>
>One assumes that the safe and disks survived the fire and the fireman's
>water, but they did not survive the descent from the 5th floor IT suite
>to the lower basement, nor did the disks.
>
>I have heard rumours, but it could be an urban myth, that some companies
>had their IT sites and their off site storage in each of the twin
>towers.

The NYC offices of Sun Systems. A big office that had no offsite
storage for the local data. It was a big office. I had not heard that
teh "offsite" was the other building but it makes sense, or we are
talking about different companies.



>
>The lesson is to run a proper rotation of back-ups, do it frequently and
>rotate the media between off-site and on-site. Your off-site store
>should be far enough away that a single event will not wipe out your
>site and the off-line site. The off-site must not be so far away as to
>discourage the regular rotation. You may therefore be able to come to
>an agreement with a friend who lives reasonable close by that you
>provide off-site storage for each other.
>
>Then you may not need to keep the back-ups in a fire proof safe. You
>may need to keep them secure if the data, is sensitive or would be
>valuable to some person of evil intent if they got hold of the data.
>
>--
>Nicholas David Richards -


The safe isn't important for disaster/recovery. Offsite is _very_
important. I tell small business owners to get in the habit of taking
their daily critical data backup home in their jacket pocket every
day.

In business it doesn't take a fire to make your computer systems
inaccessable, at last for days. Weather can do it. In NYC, doing
disaster recovery planning for Big Bank, I've seen buildings
containing our datacenters put out of reach for hours to days for
reasons like a power substation explosion that sprewed PCBs and
asbestos all over the street in front of a datacenter building. The
police blocked the entire area off for about a day. The bank had
hotsites and switchover plans. The branch and ATM customers never
noticed.

I also had a client lose the use of his entire office space for a week
because of a burnout fire on the floor below. My client had heavy,
heavy smoke damage but no water or fire damage. Exposed tapes and
floppies were unusable but the equipment was all OK after an expensive
D/R cleanup. The client had his data offsite, but didn't need it.

It's called business continuity planning. It starts with a look at
what the critical aspect of the business is and then planing for the
computers, paper files, and freqeuntly over looked, the people.
Sometimes an "loss of income" insurance contract is part of a
contingency plan.
--

a d y k e s @ p a n i x . c o m

Don't blame me. I voted for Gore.
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 23, 2005 8:26:17 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

In article <ct0ibb$fs6$1@panix5.panix.com>, Al Dykes <adykes@panix.com>
writes
>In article <O5QYvXABB88BFAMt@salmiron.co.uk>,
>Nicholas D Richards <nicholas@salmiron.demon.co.uk> wrote:
>>
>>I have heard rumours, but it could be an urban myth, that some companies
>>had their IT sites and their off site storage in each of the twin
>>towers.
>
>The NYC offices of Sun Systems. A big office that had no offsite
>storage for the local data. It was a big office. I had not heard that
>teh "offsite" was the other building but it makes sense, or we are
>talking about different companies.
>

I could not remember the name but now you mention it, it is the name I
heard.

>
>
>>
>>The lesson is to run a proper rotation of back-ups, do it frequently and
>>rotate the media between off-site and on-site. Your off-site store
>>should be far enough away that a single event will not wipe out your
>>site and the off-line site. The off-site must not be so far away as to
>>discourage the regular rotation. You may therefore be able to come to
>>an agreement with a friend who lives reasonable close by that you
>>provide off-site storage for each other.
>>
>>Then you may not need to keep the back-ups in a fire proof safe. You
>>may need to keep them secure if the data, is sensitive or would be
>>valuable to some person of evil intent if they got hold of the data.
>>
>
>
>The safe isn't important for disaster/recovery.

I totally agree, however a safe may be necessary for security or data
protection reasons.

>Offsite is _very_
>important. I tell small business owners to get in the habit of taking
>their daily critical data backup home in their jacket pocket every
>day.
>

Going OTT now. When I started in this business I remember that IBM
used to specify that EDS when taken off site had to be carried in
specially shielded containers to protect them from stray magnetism.
Mind you, you would have had a job getting one of those into your jacket
pocket!

Even punched cards were supposed to be carried in a protected
environment. My first employer had a van whose environment was
specially controlled to protect the cards that it transported. By the
time I started it was recognised that this was OTT. It used to make me
laugh, when we would correct a hand punched card by sticking the chard
back in the card using a specially moistened finger.
--
Nicholas David Richards -

"Où sont les neiges d'antan?"
January 23, 2005 11:53:40 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

In article <Q4-dnWDDT-zT82_cRVn-vA@comcast.com>,
BobwBSGS@TrashThis.comcast.net says...
> Louise wrote:
> > I have been keeping my very valuable disks, both program and data, in a
> > "fireproof" safe in my apartment - but far away from the computer and
> > regular usb backup drives.
> >
> > The safe, which also had a sizable quantity of cash stored there, has
> > become damp and musty. A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
> > which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.
> >
> > Obviously, this is not a good system as I'm under an impression that
> > disks should not get damp :-)
> >
> > Is it really better to keep valuable disks in a safe or would it be just
> > as good to keep them on a bookcase shelf?
> >
> > Louise
> >
>
> Why not dry out the safe by using bags of dessicant? And, 60% R.H. is
> well within the non-operating specs for typical HDs.
>
I have dried out the safe now and it's down to about 45% humidity.
However, that doesn't answer the new information I received when I
discovered that my safe was "safe" for paper in a fire, but not for data
disks.

Louise
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 23, 2005 11:53:41 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

In article <MPG.1c5dd8da14f45cff9897d3@news-server.nyc.rr.com>,
Louise <none@nospam.com> wrote:
>In article <Q4-dnWDDT-zT82_cRVn-vA@comcast.com>,
>BobwBSGS@TrashThis.comcast.net says...
>> Louise wrote:
>> > I have been keeping my very valuable disks, both program and data, in a
>> > "fireproof" safe in my apartment - but far away from the computer and
>> > regular usb backup drives.
>> >
>> > The safe, which also had a sizable quantity of cash stored there, has
>> > become damp and musty. A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
>> > which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.
>> >
>> > Obviously, this is not a good system as I'm under an impression that
>> > disks should not get damp :-)
>> >
>> > Is it really better to keep valuable disks in a safe or would it be just
>> > as good to keep them on a bookcase shelf?
>> >
>> > Louise
>> >
>>
>> Why not dry out the safe by using bags of dessicant? And, 60% R.H. is
>> well within the non-operating specs for typical HDs.
>>
>I have dried out the safe now and it's down to about 45% humidity.
>However, that doesn't answer the new information I received when I
>discovered that my safe was "safe" for paper in a fire, but not for data
>disks.
>
>Louise


What's your question ?

BTW: Humidity has to be in a mid-range. Too low is almost as bad as
too high. Constant temp and humity is called for in any discussion of
media storage.


--

a d y k e s @ p a n i x . c o m

Don't blame me. I voted for Gore.
Anonymous
a b G Storage
January 24, 2005 1:11:52 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage (More info?)

On Fri, 21 Jan 2005 20:11:00 GMT, Louise <none@nospam.com> wrote:

>The safe, which also had a sizable quantity of cash stored there, has
>become damp and musty. A humidistat read 60% humidity inside the safe
>which I think was from the large amount of cash in the safe.
>
>Obviously, this is not a good system as I'm under an impression that
>disks should not get damp :-)

Separate from the issue of whether this is appropriate for data
storage or not, many safes have the ability to use a small heating
device specifically for the purpose of keeping moisture low. One
brand name is Goldenrod, and they typically go in the $20-40 range..

Some folks do this themselves with several small wattage bulbs in
series (say, 2 25W bulbs wired in series). The reduced voltage and
current extends the lifetime on the bulbs pretty dramatically. Some
also use christmas light strings. In any case, it's a good idea to
keep the lights shielded to avoid scorching.

Devices like this are much more practical than dessicant, as they
require little to no maintenance and are very stable. My main
experience is with gun safes, where you want to keep the metal dry and
rust-free but not dry the wooden stocks excessively, and the Goldenrod
works great.



--
Neil Maxwell - I don't speak for my employer
!