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Is it safe to store CDs in a place too damp for vinyl, VHS, or diskettes?

Discussion in 'Techno-Magic' started by SlickRCBD, Dec 22, 2016.

  1. SlickRCBD Gems: 23/31
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    My mother wants to know if she can safely store the original CD/DVD-ROMs for her computer in the basement. Things like installation media.

    Back when I was a kid, said basement has ruined vinyl records, VHS tapes, and 5.25" diskettes because it tends to get a bit damp and they got warped. For this reason nobody has put any type of [magnetic] storage media in the basement in well over 25 years.
    However, CDs and DVDs seem a little different. Would they be OK? I've been advising her not to do so, but I just started re-thinking that.

    P.S. Am I wrong saying an elderly lady that is not very technically inclined that blue-ray DVDs are like high-density DVDs, and just like with those old high-density 5.25" disks being incompatible with the Apple IIGS's 5.25" drive (she remembers when I asked her to get some blank disks at the start of the '90s and got the wrong ones...several times until it sunk in), Blue-Ray is incompatible with her DVD player.
     
  2. Blackthorne TA

    Blackthorne TA Master in his Own Mind Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    I would say no.
     
  3. henkie

    henkie Hammertime Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Burned disks I would especially not recommend to keep in a damp cellar. For normal CDs and DVDs it should be less of an issue, I'd expect, but I'd still not recommend it, they might be made from mostly inert material, it's not entirely inert.

    Blue-rays being essentially higher density DVDs doesn't seem that inaccurate, as long as it's clear that they're not compatible (same as CDs and DVDs, really).
     
  4. Keneth Gems: 27/31
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    Dampness shouldn't affect CDs, DVDs, or BluRays. They're not even particularly affected by extreme temperature changes (not counting the popcorn you get if you put a CD in the microwave).

    Honestly, storing anything on CDs and DVDs these days is kinda stupid, but if you absolutely you had to, they call them "compact" for a reason. You can buy basically airtight folders with hundreds of disc sleeves in them that should be more than enough to hold and store a lifetime of those worthless things in a size small enough to store anywhere.
     
  5. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    I assume various airtight container solutions are widely available in the US so if you wanted to be extra sure, you could just go with those?
     
  6. SlickRCBD Gems: 23/31
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    Software you buy in a store still comes on CDs or DVDs, although some of this goes back to the early 2000's.
    All of the stuff from before that is in my possession.
    I'm talking about the re-installation CD for her copy of Microsoft Office 2003, or the old copy of The Print Shop she occasionally uses, or the re-installation CDs for my old XP computer I gave her before her current computer, or the DVD I burned with Windows 7 and the companion one with all the drivers for her computer in case I have to reformat and reinstall everything on it again (I don't give her the administrator password for her own computer because she's not very computer literate and can not seem to learn. I've had her run "Discovering Windows 98" and later "Tour Windows XP" repeatedly over the years to re-learn the basics, and wish they included a similar tour in Windows 7 and later. ).
     
  7. pplr Gems: 18/31
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    Mentioning Windows 7. Would she want to move to it since XP is seen as more hackable and is not supported anymore or does she not use the internet?
     
  8. SlickRCBD Gems: 23/31
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    Not without giving up that old parallel printer. The newer computer doesn't have a parallel port, and XP uses the drivers for Windows 2000.
     
  9. pplr Gems: 18/31
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    Can a Win 7 driver be found for that printer and is the computer too old to handle Windows 7?
     
  10. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    USB to parallel LPT cable adapters are a thing, so you don't actually need a parallel port any more.
     
  11. SlickRCBD Gems: 23/31
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    The computer is too old to handle Windows 7. It can barley handle Windows XP. Drivers are an issue. I'm not going to deal with those issues, the issue was storage space for stuff that isn't even stored in the same room as the computers. She wanted to move the stuff that "is never used" into the basement because she has a bad knee and wants to put stuff she needs upstairs and stuff she doesn't need like backups and installation media downstairs. However, as I indicated, we learned the hard way almost 30 years ago not to store vinyl records or VHS tapes down there. Lost a lot of valuable '45s.

    Sorry, but this is my mother's computer, and I've had the arguments. She's not a tech, I'm the tech, but she doesn't always listen to me, saying that I'm always looking for the latest toys when I should follow a practice of "if it's not broke, don't fix it" and how she can't afford to be buying new stuff all the time when the old stuff still works.

    I apologize for the rant, but it is what I've been dealing with all my life. I know about modern stuff, buy try convincing HER of that.
     
  12. Merlanni

    Merlanni ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Recognizable. Does she have a smartphone?:eek:
     
  13. SlickRCBD Gems: 23/31
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    She was just finally convinced to get an iphone 5 last year, with a lot of peer pressure from her friends who all use iPhones, back when they were on closeout with deep discounts because the stores wanted to get rid of them, but only uses it for texting and phone calls that she could have done with her flip phone. I used to have the same model of flip phone.

    Once in a while she might check e-mail on it or use the web browser, and she's used the GPS navigation twice, both times calling me and asking how to get it working. I doubt she's used it more than that since the last time she called and asked for help with the GPS was about a week and a half ago.
    I don't think she even knows all that the phone can do, or how to use it that well although I've tried to show her. Then again, I've repeatedly had to have her run "Discover Windows 98" or "Tour Windows XP" to refresh her memory on basic stuff like using the taskbar and manipulating windows so think about that. I wish they hadn't dropped the tutorials in Windows 7.
    I've got Android, so I do tend to look a bit incompetent helping her because I'm not that familiar with the iPhone since I rarely get to handle one. I usually do a quick search on my on phone or computer to find the feature.
     
  14. T2Bruno

    T2Bruno The only source of knowledge is experience ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    It's perfectly safe. They won't spontaneously combust or anything. But I would recommend backing them up to a hard drive. We put all of our CD's on the hard drive and have them stored in the basement. The kids play them every now and then.
     
  15. ConjurerDragon

    ConjurerDragon Ich dien ★ SPS Account Holder

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  16. SlickRCBD Gems: 23/31
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    Mom doesn't have "tens of thousands of dollars" to spend on fixing something that has always been that way. Especially since she might need to spend $10,000 to fix the familyroom which was added on by the previous owner and seems to have skimped on the foundation as it is now sinking.
     

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