On 9/1/07, Hans Witvliet <hwit(a)a-domani.nl> wrote:
On Wed, 2007-08-29 at 17:21 -0400, Jorge Fábregas
Do anyone of you use any tape drive for personal backup? I personally use a
2nd internal hard-drive where I perform nightly backups but twice a year I
backup to offline media (DVD-R DL media)...but right now I'm reaching 100 GB
of data...that's a bunch of data to burn! (even if it's dual layer media).
I know there are HD and Blu-ray drives but they're too expensive. I think I
can get a tape-drive for much mess.
I just would like to know if anyone recommends any particular tape-drive and
also what software do you use with it (just plain tar?)
Even for tape-drives, 100GB is a huge chunk to swallow ;-)
If you have the money, 100GB tape drives are readily available and
have been for 7 or 8 years, so used is a real possibility. It's the
home budget that makes it an issue. For big bucks, the SAIT-3 drive
technology should be coming in the next year iiuc. 2 TB / tape
uncompressed. 5 TB / tape compressed.
I suspect HD-DVD is more cost effective for 100GB sizes of data. I
just don't know the long term reliability factor.
I would recommend a external USB-drive.
Currently, 500GB drives go for about 100 Euro's
Tape drive capable of storing this amount will be a magnitude more
I would say, more than an order of magnitude. Likely $5K or so for a
new 500GB tape drive. Just the media is probably in the $100 range
The trouble with using powered off hard drives for long term backup is
simply that they are not designed for it. In my job I work with lots
of large data collections that we need to hold on to for years
unaccessed, so we have investigated it pretty well and there are
simply not any studies, specs, guidelines, etc. for how long a
powered-off hard drive should hold data.
The concern is that disk is a mechanical device like a car engine.
How many years can a car engine sit not running before the engine will
fail to start? No one knows.
Things I read that help:
If it is a grease seize-up issue - put the drive in a very
low-temperature oven and warm it up before you try to use it. (Maybe
in the hot sun would be smarter.)
Or (with the drive off) hold the disk 3-6 inches above a table and
drop it to try and break any stuck parts loose.
If you think it is a bad solder connection, then I read that putting
the drive in a freezer overnight can help at least until the drive
comes back up to temp.
I have found at least once that running the drive for several hours
improved the reliability and allowed me to read all the data. (The
drive had been off for 18-months).
Some good news is that we tend to make backup tapes and store the
drive for a couple years. The idea being that if the drive goes bad,
we will use the tape. We have just finished a process the involved
reading about 50 drives that had been off for 18-30 months. We did
not have any failed drives and did not have to resort to any of the
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