For years, disk vendors have continued to say tape is dead, and yet, tape continues to be a key component in the Enterprise data center. If you consider how long tape has been around, one could argue that most of the world’s information is stored on tape. In fact, tape storage is Enterprise-class in terms of reliability. Tape is not dead. It’s very much alive. Drive manufacturers continue to modernize tape by increasing tape performance and capacity, which means the cost per GB makes tape the ideal medium for long-term storage. In addition, tape is portable and can be easily migrated off-site for cost effective disaster recovery purposes.
Backup is for recovery and best practice is for a tiered recovery strategy. As time passes, data can be migrated to less expensive disk, then off to tape. For example, keeping data on disk for a short period of time – say 60-90 days – means data can be quickly and efficiently recovered to meet aggressive recovery time objectives. After that period of time, data can be deleted, or migrated off to less expensive storage which is typically cheaper disk, tape, or more likely a little bit of both (D2D2T). So the argument shouldn’t be tape vs. disk – it should be tape AND disk.
NetBackup has been backing up to tape for over a decade and offers many advantages including the ability to: