- CD-ROM stands for Compact Disc - Read-Only Memory. CD-R is Compact Disc-Recordable. CD-RW is Compact Disc Read/Write or ReWritable. (LegalScans recommends and uses CD-R for document archiving.)
- One CD can hold approximately 20,000 pages of letter-sized, black and white documents. Full color documents or photos can also be recorded on to the CD, but fewer pages will fit.
- The estimated shelf life of a CD is 100 years. CD-RW has a shorter estimated shelf life. Magnetic storage media (floppy disks, tape) often become unreliable after 10 years or less.
- A spilled cup of coffee will almost always ruin paper, floppy disks, or tape. A CD can usually be wiped off and will still function.
- Unlike floppy disks or computer tapes, CDs have no moving parts to wear out or fail.
- CDs can be formatted to work on Windows-based PCs, Apple (Macintosh), UNIX, and LINUX workstations and servers.
- In a world of rapidly changing standards, CDs are withstanding the test of time. The same basic technical specifications for CDs developed by Sony and Phillips over 10 years ago are still in use today.
- Almost all new computers sold today have a CD-ROM drive as standard equipment.
- In most cases, scanned documents on a CD-R may be admissible in court as evidence because the copy on the CD cannot be altered once recorded.
- A CD full of documents can be copied in about 15 minutes, and the image quality will be exactly the same no matter how many copies you have made. Photocopying the same number of paper documents would take many hours, and image quality decreases with each generation of copies (copy of a copy).