Mailinglist Archive: opensuse (1702 mails)

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Re: [opensuse] Backup Question
  • From: Per Jessen <per@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 16 Sep 2009 08:37:51 +0200
  • Message-id: <h8q13v$8rj$1@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Brian K. White wrote:

I have had to deal with bad tapes and bad drives but it's a simple
fact of life that the tape drive is the first thing to go in just
about every standalone back room server. The dust kills it , and if
not that then the simple fact of it being the most moving-part. Even
when the on-site people are really good about actually using the
cleaning tape. Even when the particular site isn't all that dusty.
It's simply by far the weakest, most delicate and easily broke and
first to wear out piece of equipment in the server.

I agree with all of the above, but a server sat in a broom cupboard
somewhere doesn't quite fit in my operating strategy :-)

Reading the rest of your posting, I think we are looking at two
different ends of the scale wrt tape usage. Like others, I have spent
quite a few years of my professional life working with tape. Most
recently a few years at StorageTek writing system software for tape

The most reliable tape system in the universe can't compare with any
ordinary hard drive or stick of ram or network card.

Quite the contrary. The most reliable tape system in the universe will
easily outlast any ordinary hard drive. Even the r/w head of an STK
drive has a guaranteed lifetime of 8.5 years. An ordinary harddrive
will die after five years, on average.

If you want to take the concept of a tape system as a whole, including
the process of cycling out old tapes and old tape drives, well, gee,
that only works by dint of a human manuall, actively replacing parts
continuously, being knowledgeable and always doing the right thing.
That's kind of a ridiculous amount of overhead compared to a hard
drive that can read and write a zillion times perfectly all by itself
for free for some number of years.

You might be right, but when we're talking about tape, it's because
we're talking about reliable storage, not read/write operations.

Brian, take any ordinary harddrive today and write a file to it. I'll do
the same to a 9840 tape. Then we store them in a dry place at 10-20C
for 10 years. I'll bet I can still retrieve the file, and I'll also
bet that you can't. (I've already tried both).


Per Jessen, Zürich (13.0°C)

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