"Over two thirds of surveyed businesses said they were lookingto add tape storage back into their overall network infrastructure and of those respondents, over80-percent plan to add tape storage solutions within the next 12 months.The survey, which was taken in the fourth quarter of 2007, focused on the views of morethan 200 network administrators and mid-level tech specialists at mid-size to large companies throughout the United States.
The integration of tape storage into a tiered information infrastructure is highly strategic for customers, due to its low cost of ownership, low energy consumption and portability for data protection, said Cindy Grossman, Vice President of Tape Storage Systems, IBM. LTO tape technology is a perfect choice for enterprise and mid-sized customer with its proven reliability, highcapacity, high performance and ability to address data security with built-in encryption and data retention requirements for the evolving data center.
According to the survey, 58-percent of the respondents use a combination of disk and tapefor long term archiving, 24-percent use tape exclusively, and 18-percent employ a disk-only approach. In this group, 68-percent of the current disk-only users plan to start using tape for long-term archiving, and over half (58-percent) plan to add tape for short-term data protection.The survey findings suggest that disk-only users may be experiencing a bit of buyer's remorse, said David Geddes, senior vice president at Fleishman-Hillard Research, who oversaw the study. We found that a wide majority of companies that employ purely disk-based approaches are looking to quickly include tape in their backup and archiving strategies."
While disk provides online data access and availability, tape provides additional data protection and security, lower total cost of ownership (TCO), lower energy consumption (Tape is more "green"),and can be an important part of a long term data retention and compliance strategy.
Disk is more costly, more energy hungry, and some data, although it must be retained, may seldom, if ever be looked at, so why keep it spinning?
Speaking of TCO, in a recent 5-year TCO analysis by the Clipper Group titled[“Disk and Tape Square Off Again”]stored 2.4PB of data long term on SATA disk and on an LTO tape library, the disk system was:23:1 more costly, used 290 times the amount of energy than tape. Even with a data dedupe system like IBM System Storage N series, disk was still 5 times more costly than the tape system.
The Linear Tape Open (LTO) consortium --consisting of IBM, Hewlett-Packard (HP) and Quantum-- just released its "LTO-5" plans. With 2:1 compression,you will be able to pack up to 3TB of data on a single tape cartridge. And while dollar-per-GB decline for disk is slowing down to 25-30 percent per year, tape continues to decline at a healthy 40 percent rate, so the price gap between disk and tape will actually widen even further over the next few years.
That's something to get excited about!