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Back Up Your Business Data With Tandberg's 420LTO and 220LT

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September 5, 2006 11:19:57 AM

Do you need serious backup capabilities? We tested Tandberg's entries into the low-power, small-size LTO drive category with internal and external 100 and 200 GB models.
September 5, 2006 12:58:04 PM

I just use 320GB SATA II Drives and StorCase enclosures. Much cheaper, a whole heck of a lot faster, and they are NON-LINEAR when it comes to retrieval of data. Tape has had it's day.
September 5, 2006 1:46:09 PM

Quote:
Tape has had it's day.


That is incorrect.

Tape is still a valid backup product. Maybe it will never come to mainstream in the home, but in business, disk backup is not overtaking tape. Think, for example, how you would ship 5TB of disk easily and safely to off-site storage. I guess you could ship the disks, but then you need multiple arrays to store that amount of data, so you always have a backup path available.

Additionally, what happens when your data grows to say 10TB. You don't want to ship 70 146GB drives, so then you upgrade, which means you're spending money to keep the number of disks as small as possible.

Disk backups are great, and we use them as well, but they aren't replacing tape yet, especially when the latest drives are getting up to 120MB/sec throughput.
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September 5, 2006 1:49:07 PM

Anyone know the Pros and Cons of LTO vs. AIT? Or why a Tandberg LTO1 220 drive would be a better buy than the less expensive IBM LTO 220?
As far as tapes having had their day, I guess it's a matter of the physical size of external drives and the amount of media you need to store. Say you work in video production and wanted to take home the important bits at the end of every week just in case the building burns down.. you could have a few tapes or a few drives.. I'd rather carry tapes. Or even to just backup the 600gb new data pruduced in a week, you'd have a wall stacked high with sata drives in no time.
September 5, 2006 3:46:32 PM

Quote:
Tape is still a valid backup product. Maybe it will never come to mainstream in the home, but in business, disk backup is not overtaking tape. Think, for example, how you would ship 5TB of disk easily and safely to off-site storage.


Actually, being an employee for a company that manufactures professional grade disk backup and archiving solutions, disk is replacing tape, fast. We have had over 300% growth in the last year, and basically can't keep the things in stock.

We back up dozens of GB of data, at up to 10GB/min (uning multiple subnets as a single Gig netowork will max out at about 3GB/min) with real time compression to high performance SATA II arrays managed by our Linux appliance. We back up 20 different platforms to a single box, and can cross restore single files in less than 15 seconds, and restore a complete server via BareMetal in less than 20 minutes. (data arrays restore at approx 1.5GB/min, based on network performance and client system hardware).

We don't typically "ship" disks for offsite data. Although we can pack up to 1.5TB on a single removable drive, we typically use electronic data vaulting across a WAN connection for data protection off-site. Upwards of 600GB of data can be reliably sinced across a single T1 (using packet level sync technology and database replication services). Many of our customers use inexpensive point-to-point 10Mbit connections to replicate terabytes.

There's one very important thing to remember about tape (besides incredibly slow restore speeds for single files): 100% of tape will experience bit level data failure after less than 90 days.
September 5, 2006 6:29:29 PM

Yes, Disk is taking a role in back up, that I won't deny. Tandberg is acually using Disk technology on many levels. It's being used as a daily backup mechanism in the High end, then it's offloaded to tape. Also with burgeoning technologies, like Tandberg's new RDX, (shameless plug) we are positioning it for the SoHo (Small Office Home Office) market as well. http://www.prostorsystems.com/ProStor_TandbergPressRele... Had the disk vendor done a bit of research, he would have known that we have a line of NAS, D2D, D2D2T and iSCSI solutions available to help our higher end users expedite backups.

Tape is still widely used though. In these high end markets, it's still needed for compliance. In the US, we have requirements for publically traded companies, health organizations and a few others, where they need to back up their data onto to tape and take it offsite. Another factor of this compliance is WORM (Write Once, Read Many) which LTO will also support.

In the SMB (Small to Medium Busines) space, Tape is still very strong. I will spare the Tit-for-Tat with our Disk Vendor post as I don't think it's prudent.

As for the Pros and Cons of LTO vs AIT:

Per Gartner reports, LTO has 85%+ Marketshare. Traditionally this is in the Full High, High Performance Space. With the launch of the Half High, Value oriented Drives, market share is expected to grow into this space as well. The Half High LTO products are targeted at the same market as AIT. AIT is helical scan, much like a VCR. LTO is Linear. Helical scan means the Head Drum spins at very rapid rate, writing small bits of data on the tape. That spinning head causes more wear on the media than Linear. With Linear, the Head is stationaryand the tape is guided across the head. AIT is a proprietrary technology soley developed and marketed by Sony where as LTO is an Open Standard; HP, Tandberg, IBM and Quantum comprise the consortium. Per Gartner reports, AIT has also been loosing market share. There are some gliches in the AIT roadmap where some newer drives can't read some of their older media... AIT-4 I beleive. The LTO consortium requires that an LTO manufacturer, must be backward compatible and also be cross compatible to other LTO consortium products. (eg A data cartridge that has been written to by an HP LTO-2 Drive, has to be able to be read and written to by a Tandberg Drive and vice versa).

Why a Tandberg 220LTO LTO-1 Drive over an IBM drive?

It's very likely that Tandberg and IBM have increased this relationship to include the 220LTO. http://www.tandberg.com/index.php?option=content&task=v... I can't say for sure because I don't work with that account. Also are you sure you are comparing apples to apples?

From the Review:
"The Tandberg 420LTO advertised native transfer rates of 24 MB/s, and it managed to hit 20.8 MB/s in our tests. While that's very close to the claimed figures, we wonder why it's so far from the LTO-2 standard, which should be 40 MB/s. Once again, we can only assume that the reduced performance is part of the trade-off that Tandberg made to get the drive small and power-miserly.

The external 220LTO is based on the older LTO-1 standard, but managed 14.6 MB/s, which is very close to its advertised 16 MB/s specification, and acceptably close to the LTO-1 standard's 20 MB/s specification. Of course, as an LTO-1 drive it also only has half the capacity of the 420LTO."


The Spec carries a range of Performance. The specifications listed above are for the Full High, Full performance products (see our 840LTO for an example). All four members of the LTO Consortium are now carrying a value oriented version of LTO Drives, which are Half High, and lower performing than their Full High brothers.

I am a bit concerned with the performance though... If this was a partner of mine, I would have put them in touch with our Support to see what's going on. Block Size and compression (on or off) can speed up the back up. 20MB/s just doesn't seem right...it should be faster.

I hope that helps clear up some of the questions and misunderstandings.

Let me know if you have more questions.

Thanks

Tandbergdataeast
September 6, 2006 12:30:02 AM

Quote:
There's one very important thing to remember about tape (besides incredibly slow restore speeds for single files): 100% of tape will experience bit level data failure after less than 90 days.


Where do you get this statistic? I have recovered data from at least 1 year ago from a DLT IV tape. Actually, it was an entire system.

I agree disk backups are nice, but shipping disks all over the place is just asking for trouble. Additionally, I don't see many systems, at least in our company, that maintain multiple GigE connections just to get backups going that fast. In the database world, it's just not needed.
September 6, 2006 12:40:00 AM

Quote:
Anyone know the Pros and Cons of LTO vs. AIT?


My Lacie AIT2 tape drive has just died, and an older AIT1 HP drive started to exhibit problems within 3 years. I ran a cleaning tape regularly but still had a fair few media failures, so I'm not really a big fan of AIT. Additionally I think the market share issue is important especially if storing for any length of time greater than the expected life of the drive.

As for the disk v tape argument.. well for SMB anyway, tape for database and snapshots, with disk and WAN backups for everything else is my current preference, but it really does depend on the business operation and location.
September 6, 2006 6:07:12 AM

HDDs are the way of the future, just as the editor said in his opinions section. Any company requiring TBs of storage a year, can afford an on site datacenter, or remote backup solution(via the internet).
September 12, 2006 8:24:22 PM

Well as far as baking up to disk, yah, tape is dead. BUT only a fool would backup to disk, and not have a tape backup in conjunction. REASON- easy, if you loose 1 drive in a array, you are toast. (backup array) unless you did raid, but then you are running into capacity issues. 6x500 gb of drives, = 2.5 tb in raid 5. the backup would be slower than a tape drive. Our lto-2 drives backup 1200-1400 mb a min. Hard drives - not even close. i tried,
2. a AUTO loader enabled lto=600gb+ of data per set of tapes.

Most important. What good is backup to disk, if 1. your data center gets flooded (KAtrina anyone, and yah that happend). 2. You cannot easily swap out drives, for a rotating backup. 3. LIke how we are dealing with now, the FEDs want archived data from one of our clients, so, BOOM, pull the tapes, thwor in the vault. 4. THE KILLER, with tapes, lets just say 1tb, i can put those tapes in a box, mail off to a storage facility for safe keeping. A hard drive, (single, ). You send the drive to where, ?? and who do you know wouldnt just take the drive, lol.. BUT also, if you have to RAID them up, then yah, that is 3 500 gb drives, in which you MUST label correectly, and ship off.

Tapes are there for offsite recovery, safe storage .Ease of use, and the critical, Archiving. Sure you can archive hard drives, but soonn, you will have a capinet full of hard drives. AND against a lto-3 drive, that drive will smoke ANY SATA drive, unless you have 6 sata drives in a array, but you still cant auto load, easy transport..

REMEMBER in business, being able to save a buck by cutting corners, will come back and slap you into that same corner.

Also, as a note. in our environment, we have a disk array, that we backup to. IT is very fast. BUT also, has its limitations. We use a sata array, 8 drives, in a raid 10. 1.2 tbs of space. That allows us to do 2 full backups, before it starts over-writing. Each night, servers are backuped to hd. From there a second job preforms a backup to tape, to our LTO autoloader. and we rotate the tapes every 2 days. (200 gb uncompressed per tape, 8 tape auto loader).
September 13, 2006 7:50:52 AM

Quote:
Well as far as baking up to disk, yah, tape is dead. BUT only a fool would backup to disk, and not have a tape backup in conjunction. REASON- easy, if you loose 1 drive in a array, you are toast. (backup array) unless you did raid, but then you are running into capacity issues. 6x500 gb of drives, = 2.5 tb in raid 5. the backup would be slower than a tape drive. Our lto-2 drives backup 1200-1400 mb a min. Hard drives - not even close. i tried,
2. a AUTO loader enabled lto=600gb+ of data per set of tapes.

Most important. What good is backup to disk, if 1. your data center gets flooded (KAtrina anyone, and yah that happend). 2. You cannot easily swap out drives, for a rotating backup. 3. LIke how we are dealing with now, the FEDs want archived data from one of our clients, so, BOOM, pull the tapes, thwor in the vault. 4. THE KILLER, with tapes, lets just say 1tb, i can put those tapes in a box, mail off to a storage facility for safe keeping. A hard drive, (single, ). You send the drive to where, ?? and who do you know wouldnt just take the drive, lol.. BUT also, if you have to RAID them up, then yah, that is 3 500 gb drives, in which you MUST label correectly, and ship off.

Tapes are there for offsite recovery, safe storage .Ease of use, and the critical, Archiving. Sure you can archive hard drives, but soonn, you will have a capinet full of hard drives. AND against a lto-3 drive, that drive will smoke ANY SATA drive, unless you have 6 sata drives in a array, but you still cant auto load, easy transport..

REMEMBER in business, being able to save a buck by cutting corners, will come back and slap you into that same corner.

Also, as a note. in our environment, we have a disk array, that we backup to. IT is very fast. BUT also, has its limitations. We use a sata array, 8 drives, in a raid 10. 1.2 tbs of space. That allows us to do 2 full backups, before it starts over-writing. Each night, servers are backuped to hd. From there a second job preforms a backup to tape, to our LTO autoloader. and we rotate the tapes every 2 days. (200 gb uncompressed per tape, 8 tape auto loader).


I dont know what drives you're using if they cannot achieve 1.2-1.4 GB speeds a minute . . . Hell, even a desktop system with a external RAID 5 array can approach 200MB/s (megaBYTES/ second). Anyhow, I dont work in a datacenter, nor would I ever want to, but for home use, HDD storage is the only way to go, I dont how important your data is, there are measures in software, and hardware for which you can all but garuntee your drives safty.

Since I tried explaining this to another person just recently on another forums, let me explain, incase there is some confusion. *You*, backup all your data to USB, or eSATA, *you* dont take it around to weekend parties with you, and bounce it around like a basketball (take care of it if its truely important data), *you* turn it on only when needed, thus helping to increase the chances of this drive lasting a while, *you* use programs like Spinrite to help spot trouble, and to maintain the drive, *you* isolate your data from OS drives, OSes tend to get squirrely, and access drives quite often, which can lend to disk failure. Anyhow, its my opinion this method is far superior to anything else, on a personal PC.

Anyhow, if you cannot get a RAID 10 array pusing out more than that meager 1.4GB a minute, I'd suggest moving away from RTL drives, and using something a bit more modern, like, a floppy disk or something . . .
*just teasing*


[EDIT] I bet you guys will be loving it when blueray hits full swing, here, we wont even bother with it.
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