The tape backup industry has a long history of new technology leapfrogging the established competition. Whether it has been reel-to-reel systems, half-inch tape, quarter-inch cassette, digital audio tape, 8-mm helical scan or digital linear tape, the questions for the user have always been the same. What is the best solution for your application today? When does it make sense to leave legacy products behind and make the jump to the next big thing?
The DLT7 Autoloader from Benchmark Tape Systems has 280G capacity and can back up 20G of data per hour. It's priced at $4,779.
No need to rewind
' Stackers and autoloaders usually have a single tape drive, can handle up to 15 cartridges and are best used for small to midsize networks.
' Tape libraries support multiple tape drives and hundreds of cartridges and can use all drives concurrently, backing up massive amounts of data per hour.
' Heavy backup requirements can be too much for a library with even the fastest SCSI connection; managers of large enterprises may want to invest in a system with a Fibre Channel host interface.
' Faster systems with high capacities are just around the corner, though which of the competing technologies will emerge as the leader is anyone's guess.
The next big thing
The 230D from Exabyte uses DLT technology to supply 1.05T of storage and can back up 36G of data per hour. It's priced at $19,995 to $20,745.
John H. Mayer of Belmont, Mass., writes about information technology.
|Vendor||Product||Media||Native capacity||Backup performance per hour||Interface||Mean time between failure, in hours||Comments||Price|
|DS9000 Series||DLT4000 DLT7000 DLT8000||80G||43G||SCSI-2||80,000||Basic external tape backup for network servers, with integrated LCD||$3,595 to $6,895 up|
|Tape Array 5||same||400G||216G||SCSI-2 LVD/SE or HVD||80,000||Rackmount system with up to 5 drives, hot-swap drives, redundant fans, power supplies||$2,650 up|
|FastStor 22||same||1.76T||43G||SCSI-2 LVD/SE or HVD||80,000||Autoloader with 22-tape capacity, small footprint||$7,995 up|
|Scalar 458 Series||same||4.6T||172G||SCSI-2 SE or HVD||80,000||Scalable libraries supporting up to four drives and 48 cartridges||$31,647 up|
|Scalar 100/DLT||same||4.8T||260G||SCSI LVD/SE or HVD Plug-in SAN module||250,000||Highly scalable library supporting up to six drives and 60 cartridges, with multiple connectivity options||$11,310 for unit, $8,670 per drive|
|Scalar 1000/DLT||same||63T||36G||SCSI-2 differential||200,000 (drive)||Automated library for data center supporting up to 48 drives and 788 cartridges||$14,950 for unit, $10,600 per drive|
|AIT 70/100||AIT-1 or AIT-2||100G||43G||SCSI-2 LVD/SE or HVD||200,000 (drive)||Designed for workstations and small networks; has integrated LCD||$33,395 up|
|Scalar 1000/AIT||same||118.2T||43G||SCSI-2 differential||200,000 (drive)||Is highly scalable for data center applications, supporting up to 12 drives and 237 cartridges||$49,950 for unit, $13,859 for two drives|
|Benchmark Tape Systems Corp.|
|DLT1||DLT||40G||20G||Wide Ultra SCSI LVD||200,000 (drive)||Basic system in internal or external configuration||$1,499|
|DLT7 Autoloader||DLT||280G||20G||Same||200,000 (drive)||Autoloader for midrange systems with seven-cartridge capacity||$4,779|
|Breece Hill Technologies Inc.|
|B1 DLT1||DLT||40G||21.6G||SCSI-2 LVD/SE||200,000 (drive)||Drive for small networks||$1,499|
|Q2.15||DLT||600G||43G||SCSI-2||100,000||Basic tape library configuration supports two drives and 15 cartridges||$6,550|
|Q6.100||DLT||4T||130G||SCSI-2 HVD||250,000||Scalable system supports up to six drives and 100 cartridges||$31,972|
|Q.18.280||DLT||11.2T||389G||SCSI-2 LVD/SE or HVD||100,000||System for data-intensive applications supports up to 18 drives and 280 cartidges||$81,837|
|VXA AutoPak||VXA-1||445G||18G||SCSI-2 LVD||300,000||Low-cost, entry-level tape library||$4,495|
|Mammoth-2 (M2)||Mammoth-2 8 mm compatible||60G||43.2G||SCSI, LVD FC||300,000||High speed drive for midrange networks; self-cleaning||$4,995 to $5,395|
|Mammoth-LT||Mammoth LT 8 mm compatible||14G||7.2G||LVD SCSI single- ended, narrow SCSI||250,000||Economical drive for high-speed applications||$1,617 to $2,036|
|Mammoth||Mammoth 8 mm compatible||20G||10.8G||SCSI-2||250,000||High-speed drive for large departmental networks||$3,420 to $3,995|
|Eliant 820||8500 series 8 mm||7G||3.6G||SCSI-2 single-ended or differential||200,000||Drive for midrange networks||$1,590 to $1,955|
|230D||DLT||1.05T||36G||same||200,000||Tape library supports two drives and 30 cartridges||$19,995 to $20,745|
|X80||Mammoth-2||4.8T||346G||SCSI HVD, LVD||250,000||High-performance tape library supports eight drives and 40 cartridges||$32,685 to $37,680|
Palo Alto, Calif.
|DLT 40||DLT||20G||5.4G||SE, narrow SCSI-2 SCSI-3||200,000||Drive for midrange networks includes firmware diagnostics; comes in internal, external or rack-mount units||$2,905 up|
|DLT 80||DLT||40G||21.6G||SE, Fast Wide SCSI, SCSI-3||250,000||Drive for enterprise applications features high transfer rate, LVDS connectivity||$5,681 up|
|Quantum/ATL Products Inc.|
|PowerStor L200||DLT||280G||180G||SCSI-2||200,000||Cost-effective system for departments and workgroups; has one drive||$5,999|
|PowerStor L500||DLT||490G||54G||SCSI-2||200,000||Supports up to three drives for small to midsize LANs||$11,120|
|P1000 Series||DLT||1.05T||72G||SCSI-3||250,000||Library for midrange applications supports up to four drives and 30 DLT cartridge slots||$18,900|
|7100 Series||DLT||3.5T||126G||SCSI-3||170,000||For multiterabyte applications, supports up to seven drives and 100 cartridges||$39,875|
|P3000||DLT||11.T||288G||SCSI-3||250,000||For online transaction processing, data warehousing, image archiving applications||$89,970|
|P6000||DLT||22.8T||576G||SCSI-3, FC||250,000||Enterprise system supports up to 32 drives and 652 cartridges, with Fibre Channel interface||$220,325|