Hints & Tips on going paperless !

  freaky 20:49 26 Sep 2006
Locked

I have a lot of customer files stored in filing cabinets which I need to keep for a minimum of 6-years plus. I am running out of filing space so would like to tranfer a lot of the files to CD.

I have all the necessary gear for doing this: -

a)PC
b)Scanner - CanoScan 5000F
c)DVD-RW
d)CD-R's and DVD-Ram and DVD disks.
e)CD storage cabinet with index(on order).

Would greatly appreciate some Hints & Tips on commencing this transition....one of which is what medium to use for the copies i.e. PDF.

Other queries may arise, but there is a lot of work involved and I want to start in the right direction !

All posts will be greatly appreciated.

  STREETWORK 20:59 26 Sep 2006

This will take you some considerable time, but there are software solutions, such as 'paper port' that will keep you up all night. This will put the documents into a picture format which you can OCR if you want to. It will also file them in folders, etc ready for any storage. 6 years for a CD should be OK...

  terryf 21:09 26 Sep 2006

BUT, I have some CD's written about 5 years ago on a slow cd burner that were unreadable on a new faster cd rom. The reverse also happens, I went to help at an old peoples computer club and my cd full of goodies was not readable on an old machine (win95). The disk was written using nero winxp and had been read on various peoples machines while teaching. So IMO if you do backup up on CD, you need to check them from time to time to make sure that they are still readable. I had to use diagnostic software to recover my old CDs

  freaky 21:49 26 Sep 2006

OK, there is a danger that CD's can become corrupted with time, but if you use a reputable make and keep them in their cases away from light/heat and magnetic exposure...then there should be no problem.

I have many CD's from years back that function OK.

  Stuartli 23:13 26 Sep 2006

You also need to make more than one copy of each CD in case of damage.

Might be better to use DVD disks - Imation has claimed that some of its DVD media (usually rebadged Taiyo Yuden products) will last up to 100 years.

Don't ask me how they can prove it though...:-)

  terryf 23:16 26 Sep 2006

Freaky, are you using the same device to read these old CD's as wrote them? my point was that CD's written by an older drive were unreadable on a more modern drive for me.

  freaky 09:26 27 Sep 2006

"are you using the same device to read these old CD's as wrote them? my point was that CD's written by an older drive were unreadable on a more modern drive for me".

The CD's I was referring to were not created by me, they were CD's I had purchased in the past i.e games, utilities etc. These still work using much newer drives.

  freaky 10:00 27 Sep 2006

I agree with what you say, but when do you stop making further copies!

The alternative solution is to use another HD e.g. an external for storing these archived paper files. Then comes the problem that in X-years when you need to access some archives, the drive is so old that it will not function with your updated PC.

  StephenRogers 10:31 27 Sep 2006

just wondering about whether you could use web based email as a back up for the files, eg googlemail?

  freaky 10:53 27 Sep 2006

There are commercial organisations that will do what I want, but at a price! I would prefer to do it myself.

  freaky 11:16 27 Sep 2006

An alternative storage medium that might overcome the problem of CD detioration, is DVD-RAM disks. I believe Imation supply these with 2.6GB capacity. E-Bay are offering these @ 0.99p each.

DVD-RAM disks from what I have heard, are very reliable.

Been using Panasonic DVD-RAM in conjunction with my DVD Recorder for about a year with no problem. Also use them occasionally with one of my PC's that has an LG DVD-RW that will read/write to DVD-RAM.

Any opinions on this suggestion ?

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