Earlier today I was reading an article in the latest issue of Pro Sound News titled "Audio Archiving: Taking the Long View." It essentially was covering long-term archiving of masters and projects. Its main conclusion is that linear tape - or LTO - is currently the "first choice for archival of digital assets." That line was immediately followed by a quote from Greg Parkin, director of digital solutions for Iron Mountain Entertainment. "The problem with hard drives," Parkin said, "is that they don't spin up in 10 years." Now I realize that Parkin's intent may have been to send a shiver down the spine of professional media entities and drive them to Iron Mountain for solutions like LTO archiving, but it gave me - an advanced music consumer - a scare as well. I have a few TBs worth of audio files - purchased hi-res releases, vinyl rips, collector recordings, CD rips, etc. - pretty much all in FLAC format. I got started with 1- or 2TB drives. I now have 4TB drives connected to my PC, with the original 1- and 2-TB drives now acting as backups to their original content which now resides on the 4TBs. Anything on the 4TBs connected to the PC exists on a 1- or 2TB drive stored both in my office closet as well as offsite. In other words: three copies of everything, stored on and off site. To me, this seems like the most rational and cost effective approach to backing all this up. Still, seeing Parkin refer to 10-year-old drives as candidates that "don't spin up" is kind of alarming. I checked my oldest 1TB drives and they go back to 2009. That's coming up on eight years. True, they are now just used as backups, with their content I regularly access now living on the 4TBs, but if you doubt your backups you're not getting the peace of mind that all this backing up should bring I'd be interested to see any thoughts about this, and if there is any known "common wisdom" that a 10-year-old drive should not be expect to spin up. I'd also like to know if others are backing up by a means other than the hard drives so many of us seems to rely on, or if there are new backup technologies (LTO, even?) anyone is aware of that may eventually make their way down to a consumer level to backup FLAC content. Cheers!