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Alternatives to tape

Alternatives to Tape Backups

Some share traders can't afford to buy a tape drive to backup their data. You may be one of these people! After all, your money is probably better in the market than invested in computer hardware.

Fortunately there are alternatives - here's more information.

Alternatives to tape backup

You may ask, isn't tape an anachronism in the age of optical disks, removable hard drives and a plethora of whiz-bang, random-access storage media? In many ways it is, but because of the nature of backup it doesn't really matter that tape is slow and sequential-access. Remember, tape is cheap. Businesses use tape because they find it to be a cost-effective backup solution.

However, if you have any problems with tape backup, you'll probably be interested to know that there are several alternatives to tape.

Backup to NAS devices

NAS (Network Attached Storage) devices are attached directly to your network and can act as a backup store. Obviously, it's very convenient to backup to NAS and retrieve files; there's no disks or tapes or insert and remove, and NAS devices can be treated as just another server. There are many NAS devices specially designed for small businesses. Excellent for network backup.

Backup to REV drive

In April 2004, Iomega released the REV drive - a new storage device that has greater capacity than tape and is 5 to 8 times faster. Key features are:

  • Server backup to REV drive is much faster than tape
  • The removable REV drive units are more durable
  • No cleaning is required
  • The REV drive gives you random-access

Backup to REV drive may in fact prove more cost-effective for your business than tape, depending on your backup scheme and other factors. Otherwise, backup to REV is very similar to tape backup in principal.

Final notes

As always, invest in a quality backup program. Many backup program will support a number of backup devices, so there's no need to buy specialist REV backup software or NAS backup software.

> This article was brought to you by BackupAssist - data backup software