what resolution should I scan pictures at?

I have an Epson multifunction printer. I want to scan some pictures.  What is the resolution I should set the scanner interface at to not lose (too much?) compared to a typical picture from a 35 mm camera taken a bunch of years ago.

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If you need decent prints from the scans, use minimum of 300 DPI

You can keep a converted 72 DPI copy later for general display viewing.
Joe Winograd, Fellow&MVEDeveloperCommented:
There is no absolute answer to this. I recommend doing some reading at Wayne Fulton's excellent site, "A few scanning tips":

In particular, here are some must-read sections:

Photographic Resolution How much can we scan?

Pixels, Printers, Video - What's With That?

What is a digital image anyway?

Regards, Joe
A lot depends on what you want to do with the image.  If you want to display it on a monitor you need around 75 dpi.    If you want to print it in picture quality, at least 300 DPI, if you want to go crazy, take it up to 1200 dpi.   The question you need to ask is where did the picture come from?  Is it a photograph or from a printed page?   Photographs typically have more information in them than a printed magazine page.  When I want to preserve an old family picture I typically up the scanning to 1200 dpi because I want to preserve as much of the original picture as I can.

Also, if you're doing B&W just use the grey scale, no need to use full color.  It will help keep file sizes more manageable.
Dave BaldwinFixer of ProblemsCommented:
And here's an article from Wikipedia to enhance your confusion:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image_resolution  The quality and clarity of the 35mm film make a lot of difference.  Other than reading all the articles, I think the best thing is to make a bunch of test scans at different resolutions to see what you get.

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