Purchasing advice: tape drive

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
hello all!



i need some advice from AI readers on tape drives.



i need to buy a cheap-ish tape drive for backing up our file server for off-site storage. having had a look all the manufacturers i thought made drives don't seem to any more (lacie etc).



plus there seems even more choice of tape size etc.



any advice on what to buy? i've seen a sony AIT-1 turbo firewire/usb2 tape drive which seems good (and in budget). i know nothing about the merits of AIT though?

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 7
    a_greera_greer Posts: 4,594member
    If you are using a tower:

    You would be better off (and maybe cheaper in the long run) to use external HDDs, Tape is a royal PITA.



    For daily off site backups use 2 external HDDs, one always being off site (and -of cource- off line). the other one should just plug into the box and do the backup, then taken off site, and swapped with the older backup, which comes back for the following days backup. using this methos, you always have an onsite backup less than 48 hrs old and an offsite that is no more than 24 hrs old.





    If it is a server chassy:

    Any server worth its salt will have at least one hot swap bay, use that.





    Long term backup/archives.

    you have 2 real non-tape options here for off-line: first, use DVDs and toss them in a data vault, or get a third HDD and do a yearly (or monthly or weekly, whatever long term archive frequncy you need) backup to that and put it in a third secure location, like an off-site data vault or a bank safe-deposit box.
  • Reply 2 of 7
    othelloothello Posts: 1,053member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by a_greer

    If you are using a tower:

    You would be better off (and maybe cheaper in the long run) to use external HDDs, Tape is a royal PITA.




    thanks -- i don't know that much about tape so good to have feedback



    Quote:

    For daily off site backups use 2 external HDDs, one always being off site (and -of cource- off line). the other one should just plug into the box and do the backup, then taken off site, and swapped with the older backup, which comes back for the following days backup. using this methos, you always have an onsite backup less than 48 hrs old and an offsite that is no more than 24 hrs old.



    we actually backup the server now (its a G4 tower with multiple internal drives) to an external firewire drive.



    my concern (and it seems silly) is that lugging home a firewire drive every night and then in the morning is a pain. where as a tape is easier!



    but your plan for swapping is exactly how i imagined, but with tape...





    Quote:

    Long term backup/archives.

    you have 2 real non-tape options here for off-line: first, use DVDs and toss them in a data vault, or get a third HDD and do a yearly (or monthly or weekly, whatever long term archive frequncy you need) backup to that and put it in a third secure location, like an off-site data vault or a bank safe-deposit box.




    we have actually just going the DVD route now for archived projects (had a moment of panic about how none of our work is backed-up off site!).



    archived jobs go onto 2 DVDs then removed from the file server. one copy stays in the studio for quick retrieval, and the other goes off site.
  • Reply 3 of 7
    i've used tape drives in the past when drive sizes weren't that big, but now it just doesn't make sense any more. DATs don't hold enough data, and DLTs are way to expensive and are about as reliable as yugo. currently we pretty much do what a_greer suggested: nightly incremental backups onto external firewire drive, which is then swapped out with another drive that remains offsite every other week. long term storage was provided by cd, but now replaced by dvd.



    as far as software goes, we use a combination of retrospect and cdfinder . the later being one of the most useful pieces of software that we purchased in years.
  • Reply 4 of 7
    trick falltrick fall Posts: 1,271member
    Have heard nothing good about tape drives and second the firewire drive idea. Also if you have the drives it's a good idea to mirror the server drives.
  • Reply 5 of 7
    Quote:

    Originally posted by trick fall

    Have heard nothing good about tape drives and second the firewire drive idea. Also if you have the drives it's a good idea to mirror the server drives.



    ditto on the the mirrored raid option. i had forgotten about that as part of our backup as well..
  • Reply 6 of 7
    othelloothello Posts: 1,053member
    thanks everyone -- great feedback!



    from your advice i think we will go the hard drive route.



    will i be ok slinging a standard external hard drive (for example a lacie d2 or porsche one) in and out of a bag every other day?
  • Reply 7 of 7
    i don't think it will be a problem. i used to lug my personal drive back and forth from office to home on a regular basis and never saw any signs of wear and tear.
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