Page 1 of 1

Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 06 Jun 2018, 10:49
by Kellemora
Research has come a long way on the glass disks for data storage!

Still costs too much for home consumers, but with a glass disk holding 3000 terrabytes, we'll only need one, hi hi. ... rage-glass

Worth a look-see!

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 06 Jun 2018, 12:55
by yogi
With the prospects of virtual reality and artificial intelligence developing the way it is, 360 terabytes of data may not be enough in a few years. Also, it is one thing to be able to read the disks easily, but quite another thing to write on a nano-structure level. The cost of that laser certainly must be beyond most normal human beings. I like the idea of being able to preserve data for a few billion years. We can only hope beings that far down the timeline would have the technology to decode whatever it is we store in glass. :mrgreen:

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 07 Jun 2018, 11:18
by Kellemora
I remember the controversy about what type of media to send into space.
Logically, the data storage devices we had at the time were hi-tech, and possibly could not be figured out, so a solid gold audio recorded disk, like a record player platter, was used, because it was the simplest of all available technologies.
If they continued to make CDs and later DVDs in the same manner as they made the first non-public distribution types, we wouldn't have the trouble with them that we do now. The exposed metal film corrodes fast. They say the CDs rot, which is one way of putting it.

So far, I've not found a single data storage device that has held up as good as the old 5-1/4 floppies.
Because newer computers can't accept 5-1/4 drives, I began copying several of my old 5-1/4 floppies to CDs
I still have to keep the old 5-1/4 floppies for license reasons.
When I was making tri-fold advertising brochures, each company I did work for had their own fonts, or I had to buy the fonts for commercial use.
Also, when I was doing transcription work, we had to mail floppy disks back and forth.
When we were using the 5-1/4s we could mail just one back and forth without ever having data loss.
When we went to 3-1/2 floppies, which appear more rigid, we had to send a minimum of three copies, since so many could not be read at the other end. I usually made five copies and sent them in two separate envelopes. Often three were not enough to get a good read.
Of course now with the Internet, we just send things back and forth almost instantly. Or work directly on-line.
Glad those days are over!

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 07 Jun 2018, 15:48
by yogi
These days it's all done in the cloud. Floppies are obsolete and CD's are rare as dinosaur bones. Thank goodness for that. Solid state memory is still with us, but I have a feeling even those will disappear within my lifetime. Back in the old (really old) days we did all our data retention and disaster recovery backups on magnetic tapes. I was in that end of the business for about a dozen years and only had to use the tapes once to recover a system. It worked just fine, believe it or not.

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 08 Jun 2018, 11:36
by Kellemora
My first computer, if you want to call it that, was a Heath/Zenith Octal Entry.
I picked up a paper-tape drive 'very used' for it. I actually liked what I could do with that punch and reader.
Then I got the Apple I motherboard, a cassette tape player for the data and program tapes.
About the only thing I used the paper tape punch machine for after that was to make long tickertape banners, hi hi.
We've come a long long way since those days!

I've been through and have seen numerous pictures of these massive server farms, and I still don't know how they store all the data they collect.
When I ask, I usually get an answer like, whoever is running the data is who is storing the results on their own equipment.
That makes sense, but what about all the places who store their own data?
I know one of the games I play, they store their data on their own data centers located all around the world.
Apparently data centers are a separate entity than server farms, which have limited storage capacity.

I'm still leery of using a cloud to store my important data I don't want discovered by others.
Although I realize security is increasing regarding everything, even so, they still get hacked.
At what they charge for cloud storage, I really couldn't afford to put all of what I have in a cloud anyhow.
Although, I'm learning a few tricks for storing some things safe on-line and for free.

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 08 Jun 2018, 13:13
by yogi
I read a few things about Google's data management. All they do outside is rent space. They build their own servers, write their own operating system, and I'm pretty sure they have some custom chip facilities as well. Their servers are walled off from the rest of the building, plus the rooms in which the equipment is running is totally dark. No safety lights, no LEDs blinking, no power switch indicators. Their service techs go in with miners' caps and clean room dress. That's about all we know regarding how Google manipulates it's data storage and can get back to you in a few milliseconds with millions of records. I've always been suspicious of that retrieval time because it takes a lot longer than that to read the first page. Who knows what they are doing while we are reading the results?

I worked with a guy who built one of those first computers. The front panel was a row of toggle switches and that was how you entered data. I'm thinking it was 8-bit, but it might have been 4. Yes, 4-bit CPUs were around in those days. I don't recall if there was permanent storage inside the computer. About that time I was involved with a PDP11 which required those toggle switches to set up the boot address. After that it ran off paper tape input. We graduated to mylar tape eventually, but that played havoc with the tape punching machine. LOL As you say, those were the days my friend, I thought they'd never end. But I was damned happy when they did.

Your fears about cloud storage are justified, but they have come a long way with securing what you put out there. I'd guess that your cloud data is about as safe as your LAN when it comes to hacking by bad actors. The only thing that should prohibit you from using cloud storage is the price. Then again, it wouldn't be that difficult (just guessing) setting up a cloud of your own. NAS should work well for that purpose. Of course that won't stop the Chinese or the Ruskies from compromising your cloud, but at least you will have control and not somebody else.

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 09 Jun 2018, 09:59
by Kellemora
Don't forget, my fear of using a NAS became REALITY when my NAS went south.

I keep a backup of my data files on two external drives which ARE NOT attached to my system, only long enough to transfer the days files from one backup to another. Even then, there could be problems, which is why I do things redundantly to the point of overkill.

My wife lost all of her photo files due to a faulty Windows backup program. She's still mad over that too!

Plus, I lost several that were stored a jpg when I got a Ransomware attack through her computer into my ntfs formatted external drives on each computer. At least they didn't get to the files that were on an external backup not connected to the system.

I only used a tape backup for a couple of years, and this was only to back up the entire accounting system. It was a part of the accounting systems package. I forgot the name of it already, drat. It was popular for a long time. Since 286 machine days.

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 09 Jun 2018, 14:14
by yogi
USB SSD drives are pretty cheap these days. They would be perfect for archiving backups off line. It might save you a little redundancy work too if you keep maybe 3-4 generations of backups on different drives. They don't have the mechanics nor the software that is required to run NAS servers, which is another beautiful feature. All you need is a computer that can sense an external USB drive, which I believe would be any computer made during the last dozen years or so.

Ransomeware is a bitch. Your off line files are not safe until you sanitize ALL your network devices first. That includes mobile phones and tablets. I feel for you on that one and hope to never be required to sanitize my network. I might just be inclined to toss it all and buy new virgin equipment. :mrgreen:

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 11 Jun 2018, 11:56
by Kellemora
We have several of the little USB sticks. I carry a couple of them in my pocket with some data I share, and also to see if static or anything else causes them to fail. So far, none of them have stopped working.

We have a few devices that use the slip inside little flat memory cards. The first downfall we found with those is the device itself only accepts a specific size. I took the one out of my camera to use in my GPS and put a bigger one in the camera, and found neither devices would work. The GPS was limited to 1gig, and the camera to only a 6gig. So I put them back. Had the 12gig new one sitting around here for a long time, until my wife's niece had something it fit in and worked right.

I was able to clean up my wife's computer and reinstall the OS to a wiped hard drive. It was the only Windows computer on the LAN. I've also made backup drives as Linux drives instead of using ntfs. The ransomware only hit the ntfs drives, even though they were connected to Linux computers. Another lesson learned!

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 11 Jun 2018, 13:31
by yogi
I read an interesting comment quiet a while back. It had to do with using two or three OS's in a pseudo firewall configuration, i.e., to run one OS inside the other. The host acts as a firewall for the guest. This sounds like virtual machines to me but both Linux and now Windows have built in subsystem layers that will run each other's code. This is not a virtual machine or an emulation, much like WINE for Linux. Anyway, the point of using two different OS's is that most hackers specialize in only one. That explains why only your NTFS files were affected by the ransomware.

Those SS memory cards were a scam from day one, IMHO, for exactly the reasons you point out. They were designed to work with specific equipment and were rarely interchangeable. That's not what you want for critical backups. USB is a standard protocol which can be used on any computer. The only thing better is cloud storage. But, of course, the cloud is vulnerable in ways that an off line USB memory would not be. The first generation of USB memory was not as reliable as what is being sold today. If you only use USB memory for backup, you should not have a problem with them in your lifetime. I have a USB (1 TB) hard drive that I use to store images of my Windows OS. I don't have anything business critical, but I keep the images to recover from any disasters that may be imposed upon my live system.

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 12 Jun 2018, 11:18
by Kellemora
I'm at the library quite often and I see students in there doing their homework, sometimes on their own laptops using the libraries WiFi, but often using the libraries desktop computers which are much faster than laptops.
The thing I noticed is they all seem to plug a USB stick into the computer to copy their work to before deleting it from the library computer or they work directly from and to the USB stick. Not like a Live CD though, just for data.

Although I've never used it myself, I do know the Library has access to an on-line version of msOffice.
I know this because I've looked at the menu of available programs on the libraries computer and their are only the standard programs available with a Win7 install. So far I've not seen a desktop at the library using Win10.
So I watched a student, and they go to a browser first, usually IE, then connect to msOffice via a link in the toolbar.
Set the Save-To to their USB stick. Then they get to work.

On another note: They must be making Routers with Built-In Modems now.
I'm basing this on some comments made on a website about having to give the MAC Address of their Router to their ISP.
As far as I know, the only MAC Address you give your ISP is the MAC Address for your Modem so they can register it.
What else is connected to the Modem, such as a Router is not something they need to know or register.
Either that or people are starting to call Modems Routers, hi hi.

One last question: How safe are water cooled computers? Any fears of them leaking water?

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 12 Jun 2018, 12:57
by yogi
My oldest daughter, who lives in Florida, has cable service. Their cable box, modem, and router are all in one physical box. My ISP has always provided the modem and would rent a router to me if I wanted one. They didn't have to provide any hardware, but it was all part of an incentive package. The MAC address uniquely identifies each individual unit which is connected to the network, and I believe it's possible to obtain it via a ping or tracerout. Every once in a while a stray "guest" attaches itself to my wireless LAN. The device's MAC address is visible to me and that is how I block access, i.e., via MAC address exclusion.

I don't know what you read regarding sending MAC addresses to your ISP, but those tech forums are notorious for being overly populated with people who don't know what they are talking about. That's one of the downsides of any tech forum. You never know who knows what. The only thing that has to be registered with the ISP is an IP address associated with a domain name. That's needed to set up their DNS server, but even that information is public on the whois network.

The kids at the library most likely are using the USB memory as external data storage. They might be able to run software from the USB stick, but I'd guess the library sys admin has ways to stop that from happening. Microsoft does indeed have a web version of Office. Google does the same. These apps are limited in what they can do, but for most kids doing homework it's more than adequate. You would not be able to write your doctorate thesis on the web version of Office, but a book report or English class essay would work fine.

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 13 Jun 2018, 12:09
by Kellemora
You also have to be super careful when working on your computer and looking for what codes to type in.
Folks on websites are often trolls looking to mess up your computer even more, even on the trusted websites.

We are in a battle with Comcast for charging us rental on equipment we own.
Caught them again charging us for a TV Adapter, and we don't have TV Service through Comcast, Internet Only.
The FCC fined them 2.3 million dollars, but that didn't stop them from continuing to charge bogus rental fees.
All total, we have paid out over a grand in rental fees to Comcast, not shown on the bill they send to us, which only shows the total due for the month. We were unable to access an itemized bill until March of this year, and this is when I began questioning what each charge was for.
Due to the statute of limitations, we requested a little over half of what they stole from us back.
At best we only got back about one-tenth and that was as a credit toward future bills. Already used up in two months time.
Our state laws say we can go back 6 years from the Date of Discovery.
The FCC says they are now only libel for 90 days.
Our state could fine then 10 grand for each months bogus charge, because the frau and I are senior citizens.
But I would need physical copies of the bills, and Comcast does not keep billing records more than 1 year old.
I don't believe this, because a person from Comcast told me she checked all the way back to when we opened the account and we have always been charged modem rental fees. She also said they own the modem currently connected, so would not remove the monthly charge.
In my fight with them, I have sent them purchase receipts for the modems, TWICE, to two different representatives, and it took my contacting their headquarters to finally get them to quit charging us for our own modem.
At this point, I know they are not going to give back any more than they already have, so I'm working with the Attorney Generals office to see if they can fine them at least for the three months I do have billing statements for, after they received copies of my receipts.
If I could get service elsewhere I would, but they are the only cable company here.
We don't have DSL which is too slow anyhow, and satellite is way to expensive.
The rich and powerful always win, even when they are completely in the wrong.

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 13 Jun 2018, 13:30
by yogi
Getting them to pay for past malpractices would require lawyers above and beyond the state's AG office. Comcast knows that and are sticking it to you just because they can. Can you say "net neutrality?" No, you can't because that concept is now officially dead. Comcast and all the rest of them can legally rob you blind from now on out.

It may still be possible to rent a switch from the phone company. If you got a couple dozen interested neighbors to share the expense, you could start your own ISP. There also are existing private internet access points (VPN's), but I don't know what you have down there in TN. It may not be worth getting them to serve the area in which you live.

Then there is this: ... t-service/

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 13 Jun 2018, 15:31
by yogi
One last question: How safe are water cooled computers? Any fears of them leaking water?
Looks like I forgot to give you my considered opinion on this one. :grin:

The infamous "Silver Yogi" was making too much noise for my sensitive ears - among other things. When I researched replacing it, I looked into liquid cooling first. I do not recall seeing any negative comments about leaks, but that just means I didn't see them in the places I looked. Thus I do not know how safe they are, but the lack of comments about leakage damage is encouraging.

I didn't go with liquid cooling. The db noise level wasn't that much lower than the standard fan you get with a new processor. Plus, all the systems I saw needed an external cooling tower to cool down the liquid. On the plus side the piping for the cooling system can add an enormous amount of visual interest if you are into colored lighting inside your computer cabinet. Other than that I could see no compelling reason to go with liquid cooling.

My solution to noisy cooling systems came about in pieces. As I looked into individual components for my new system, some interesting options became available. The Power Supply, for example, had the usual fan, but it only turned on when it was needed. As it happens, that fan turns on only for a brief period during boot up, which is when a ton processing is being done. Likewise with the nVidia graphics card. Those fans are extra quiet and multi-staged. On rare occasion they will start spinning, but that's only while playing some high end games that are very demanding of resources. The Intel processor ships with it's own fan, but there are other options. I found a company called Cooler Master which has what seems to be an infinite variety of processor fan choices. Since I was thinking about maxing out the system I got the biggest fan that would fit on top of the processor and still fit into the cabinet. This fan too only turns on when needed and is controlled by the mother board's temperature sensors. The cabinet itself is amazing. It's from Corsair and made of steel. One side panel is tempered glass and the other is solid. The top is home to an 8" fan that is silent and on continuously. It's located directly above the processor and the mother board is set to sync it with the temperature thereupon. There is another 8" silent fan on the front panel with an air filter in front of it. This one too is always on low speed. The rear panel has a smaller 5" fan and I can't tell how often it is on. But it too is controlled by the mobo. Thus, you can easily see, there is a maximum flow of air through the cabinet with an enormous volume possible. I've seen all four processor cores hit 100% (during a Microsoft Defender sys check) for several minutes. From what I can tell the fans never hit full speed, but they did ramp up a bit. The best part of all this is that the whirling blades are barely audible under max load. I have not put the system to it's ultimate test and overclocked it. That would certainly test out the cooling power of all those fans. I'm confident that the cabinet full of fans and the special PS were cheaper in aggregate than would be a dedicated liquid cooled system. Admittedly it's not as "cool" looking, but it's all under my desk anyway. Nobody would see it if it were lit up. :mrgreen:

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 14 Jun 2018, 10:45
by Kellemora
The noise from fans don't bother me. But I really should build a cabinet to hold all of my computers with an air filter and intake fan. The cooling fins on my CPU's get clogged up really fast with dust.
I built this room almost too airtight and have had to add exhaust vents in here just to get fresh air.
My thought by making it almost airtight was it would have less dust. What a joke!
I tried using positive pressure through a filter pulling outside air in, that sorta worked.

The reason I was asking, my wife's son said he would give her his old computer.
That was 6 months ago and he hasn't gotten around to unloading his stuff off it first.
I found out it was water cooled, something I knew nothing about.
At first I thought this meant it had to be connected to a water line, hi hi.
Then I find out the water recycles, like you said, through a cooling tower.
In this case, the cooling tower is inside the larger than normal cabinet, so still has plenty of fans for the power supply and cooling tower.
He is a gamer, so his computers were always a hundred times more powerful than anything I ever owned.
I think this particular computer he is giving her, some day, cost over 3 grand 4 years ago.
The one he has now cost in the neighborhood of 6 grand. But I think that includes his peripherals.
Me, I spent about 300 bucks for most of my computers, 400 for the later ones.
Don't need a newer one now that I have the Silver Yogi, this one is GREAT, even without the graphics card. Fast!

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 14 Jun 2018, 14:11
by yogi
Well, I'm only a part time gamer and don't know a lot about it, but I did do some research before I built my system. There may be people who would argue that liquid cooling (I don't think it's water actually) is mandatory in some circumstances. I've not heard of or read about any such requirement specifically. Air cooling will work just as well and is a hella lot cheaper. It's not the eye candy gamers like, but in my case it's all hidden away and doesn't matter what it looks like.

It's hard to believe what kind of home computer would cost 6-grand. In fact I'd venture to guess the graphic cards in that computer is more than 50% of the cost. Your wife will go bananas if her son is including the high end graphics card with the giveaway. It does make a difference playing games.

Air tight rooms are good, but what you really need is a high efficiency air filter. Dust particles measured in microns will invade your space through the microscopic pores in the walls, not to mention what you bring in on your clothing and skin. The best you can hope for is to clean the air and not be too concerned about what is getting in through the cracks.

Re: Glass Disks to replace CD, DVD, and USB Sticks

Posted: 15 Jun 2018, 11:39
by Kellemora
I did have a multi-stage filter as my first attempt to keep the room air clean.
It had several filter pads, the smallest pad being 5 microns. The other pads were to keep the 5 micron pad from clogging up so quick. Well, it clogged up fast, like once every three days, in a closed room, and finally burned out.
That's when I installed a system to bring fresh air through a high quality type furnace filter into the room, causing the room to be under positive pressure. This did work well, but I still had too many contaminants created inside the room for it to do what I wanted.
My best bet was to evacuate the area of most contamination to outside, and this has worked the best, and the cheapest too. Have had no more problems since going this route, however, the computer CPU fins still got clogged with everything I tried. No biggie to pop the case open and blow out the fins with an air compressor a couple of times a year.
But I think it would be great to have the computers in a cabinet with filtered air blowing into the box at a fairly high speed to keep everything cooler.
I did learn it does no good to place a filter over the air intake on the computer cabinets. All this does is make more air go into the jacks and ports filling them with dust, not good.
Now if I was rich, I could probably afford a tall cabinet with blade computers, but wouldn't know how to work it, hi hi.
Of course, if I really was rich, I could hire an IT guy and start a personal private server farm.