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The lifespan of an HP DDS tape

What is the lifespan of an HP DDS 2-4 GB tape cartridge?
HP claims that DDS media will last through 2,000 passes or 100 full backups. In addition, the DDS media will "retain data" for 10 years.

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This was last published in February 2004

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Currently in the process of restoring DDS1, 2 and 3 tapes from the 1990s (it is now 2017) to transfer data to DVD/bluray - and seeing very minimal failure rates. Out of 500 tapes, only a single file or a few files on most tapes have degraded beyond recovery. If I skip the files it fails at, the rest of the tape is easily restored. All tapes were kept in their own plastic cases in a regular filing cabinet with no climate control. Tapes were exposed to varying levels of cold, heat and humidity. All tapes are a mix of standard brand names. Very reliable technology in my opinion. 

In contrast, CD-Rs of the same mix of brand names recorded in the late 1990s have a total failure rate of roughly 5% and the loss is complete. Once any part of the disk has deteriorated, the entire CD is lost. This is probably due to the reflective layer being on the outside of the disk and exposed to the elements. DVDs and bluray should not have this problem since the layer is now sandwiched in the middle. Only time will tell if DVDs and bluray can last as long or longer than DDS technology.
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