Copy pictures form hard drive

Hello! I am trying to help out my mother. She has an old Dell desk top computer. It is an Intel Pentium 3 800 MHZ L2 256 cash. with 512 mb ram. I installed a usb 2.0 card.
It currently has no CD burner installed. She has tons of digital pictures from a 3.2 and 8 MB camera. I would like to get some ideas from the group about the best item to buy. I have an old Plextor external cd burned however it does not work well with the computer, the burner never seemed to work properly on any of my computers. I was thinking of buying either a internal or external DVD burner. Keep in mind she will not be burning any Movies, only photos and copying some of her other files. From what I am reading on external hard drives, they might not be good for long term storage…disk crashes or hardware problems. What should I do.

External hard drives are still the best and most easy and flexible to use. You can drag files into it like on internal one without any burning software and problems associated with burned media.
If you want to purchase an internal DVD burner, it is fine, it will burn any CD.
Mind you burnable CD are loss problem prone than DVD.
Obviously you will need a burning software for your mother’s computer and teach her how to use it.
Do not do packet burning, all kind of problems with reading the files later, but it is one which allow drag and drop function onto a CD or DVD.

The first rule in data storage is redundancy, so the best solution is to burn a copy on DVDs and keep another copy on an external HDD. in this way it’s safer. Also the way CDs or DVDs are stored is important, because for example leaving discs under the direct sunlight certainly will make them unreadable very quick.

Another useful trick is burning data on discs adding in it also some sort of parity data, useful to recover the disc contents if some sectors become unreadable. For this there are various tools, like DVDisaster.

If you already have a good burner, maybe the best thing is buying an external HDD (I suggest a good brand, to ensure quality, like Western Digital or Hitachi). In this way your mom will have a copy on a HDD, and you can use the drive to burn the pictures on DVDs or CDs.

Thanks for the reply. I am worried about the old computer being able to work well with an external DVD burner. The old cd burner I have used in the past never worked well…I had to buy a special brand of CDs that are only available on-line. I was successful about 20% of the time. It worked nothing like my internal dvd burner on [B]my[/B] computer. Convenience would be good with an external DVD burner because I would be able to use it on other computers as well.

Take the drive out of your mothers pc and put it in yours. Make sure you don’t boot to it! Find what you need and go from there.

If mum only uses JPGs, then burning to a DVD is no problem…
If she is Shooting in RAW or saveing as TIFF, then there will be problems…If your mum is like myself, when she opens her DVD n she likes to see the Thumbnails of her photos, they can take ages to show n open…Click on one before the other thumbs are showing n the DVD will/can fail to show anything…(gets corrupted)…SO–
I would buy her a 500GB or larger USB HDD and save ALL copies to that…HDD are cheep today…I’m a bit of a complainer when it comes to buying stuff but I buy a 500GB external HD every other month or two…

I have all my photos on my HD, and on CD-R’s. Plus they are backed up onto an additional hd image…

Have you considered a Thumb Drive? 2 Gb are about $15 US.