June 05, 2007

Do some tape vendors consider themselves green?

Not long ago I was at a trade show and noticed a vendor boosting a tape product as a green alternative.    Being interested in the "green movement"  I stopped and had a chat.  I picked up the article from the booth and asked them to explain what process makes them green and they proceeded to tell me that compared directly to disk, tape is considered a greener alternative.  

The comparison is a clever one in terms of a marketing decision and could cause a few to look back at a tape deployment if they are on the fence between the two solutions I guess.   I however find it very concerning on many levels that a company can directly compare disk to tape and suddenly become "green" overnight by a simple comparison.

The argument was in comparison to stagnant tapes in an autoloader, disk consumes much more power.  They are indeed correct that storing 30Tb in disk and on line compared to 30Tb in tape would be a more cost effective choice in power consumption.

I feel that we will see great things with the adoption of such technologies as de-dupe, larger drives and MAID that will ease the power crunch in respect to backups and storage in the near future.

by Kyle Ohme June 5, 2007 in Power & Cooling


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Tape is a dark shade of green. It can be 20x or more, less energy hungry than a comparable SATA disk system as well as offering strategies to address data security with encrypting tape drives, compliance with WORM tape, and disaster tolerance by moving tape deployments or cartridges out of region. A combination of disk and tape in a tiered approach can help customers meet performance SLA goals and data protection, archive and TCO goals. A nice shade of green!

Posted by: Bruce Master | Jun 29, 2007 7:15:44 PM

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