Food for thought, most magnetic media (5-1/4", 3-1/2", tape, etc.) tend
to degrade between 10 to 20 years. After that you have about a 50/50
chance that it will be readable. Not to mention that 10 years in
computer time is eternity. Will you be able to find software that will
run on the current operating system that can read the files? If you are
going to store the files, CD-R or an equivalent is best. Also, just
keeping a copy of the old software is not good enough. Every 5 versions
or so, you should "update" the files to the current format, or they will
be gone forever.
Good luck, no matter how you store it.
Jake Watson, E.I.T.
Salt Lake City
> There is no easy answer. It seems different engineers have different
> practices or policies. I must agree with Roger that saving design documents
> is more appropriate than discarding them. Also, I agree with Dennis, that you
> cannot be liable for over design however you will lose clients if they
> believe the "engineer down the street" can design for less money. ( Now I
> wonder who his insurance carrier and lawyer are?)
> In New York, I was told, " If you sign and seal a document, then you are
> responsible for it, forever" however long that may be. That's why I save all
> my documents.( One reason I have a Basement).
> John G., P.E.