About the durability of EPROMs...

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lemonpotato
Posts: 13
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2016 2:35 am

About the durability of EPROMs...

Post by lemonpotato » Mon Nov 21, 2016 1:44 am

Hey there,
so I've read a lot of times on the internet that EPROMs aren't very durable as they lose their data over time/are likely to suffer "data rot". I kept reading that these EPROMs are supposed to last roughly 10 years.

So my question - how true is this? Has anyone any experience with this and confirm if it's really just 10 years, or do they actually hold much longer? Are there alternatives (in terms of chips, not flash carts)?

I'm interested because I'd just like to know if I'll still be able to play these games when I'm an old man or if I'll have to throw them in the garbage by then (I don't think I'll go through the whole reprogramming in 10+ years ;-) )

lidnariq
Posts: 9027
Joined: Sun Apr 13, 2008 11:12 am
Location: Seattle

Re: About the durability of EPROMs...

Post by lidnariq » Mon Nov 21, 2016 11:45 am

EPROM (and EEPROM and FLASH) technology all matured at different times. Final-stage technology of each type is comparable, with rated durability somewhere around 40-100 years.

However, UVEPROMs reached "mature technology" status somewhere around 2000. Older ones will be less durable, much as older FLASH ROMs will be less durable too. All else being equal, a UVEPROM will have greater durability than a EEPROM made in the same year.

As a big bonus complicating factor: if you get a used part, you have no way of knowing just how much wear it's already taken. So New Old Stock UVEPROM made in the late 90s should do quite well, but so should a brand new SST39SF part. Due to how UVEPROMs work, they're likely to have fewer total cycles than EEPROMs or FLASH, but that doesn't necessarily mean it'll do well.

lemonpotato
Posts: 13
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2016 2:35 am

Re: About the durability of EPROMs...

Post by lemonpotato » Wed Nov 23, 2016 7:16 am

Thanks for the clarification :)

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