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originally posted by: intergalactic fire
You should keep em.
Data stored on optical devices(cd, dvd) is much safer and will last a lot longer than on a magnetic device.
Off course it depends on the quality of the cd and how you store it.
If you keep them in these closed cylindrical containers in a dark, low humidity environment they will easy last 20 years.
How long will your external drive last? Little by little data will get corrupted, files get un-readable, so 5-10 years if you're lucky.
If you want to keep data for a long time i believe optical is the best way, good quality and storage is a must, not like one of the posters photos above
The downside, it's a lot of work.