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Data Storage

Sony Tape Storage Breakthrough Could Bring Us 185 TB Cartridges 208

jfruh (300774) writes "Who says tape storage is out of date? Sony researchers have announced a breakthrough in magnetic tape tech that increases the data density per square inch by a factor of 74. The result could be 185 TB tape cartridges. 'By comparison, LTO-6 (Linear Tape-Open), the latest generation of magnetic tape storage, has a density of 2 gigabits per square inch, or 2.5 TB per cartridge uncompressed.'"
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Sony Tape Storage Breakthrough Could Bring Us 185 TB Cartridges

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  • by FireFury03 ( 653718 ) <slashdot@nexusu[ ]rg ['k.o' in gap]> on Friday May 02, 2014 @06:47AM (#46897789) Homepage

    We have had RAID failure twice now. The idea is that even with things like SMART, the errors in the second disk (or 3rd etc) don't become apparent till you try and recover and thrash the disk properly.

    The other reason why RAID isn't a backup is because it doesn't account for software/human failures - good luck recovering your data from a RAID after accidentally running "rm -rf /", whereas time indexed backups will allow you to go back a few days/weeks/months and recover your data after you discover it's not on the disk any more.

    RAID is there to keep systems running in the event of a hardware failure - its no substitute for a backup.

    Anyway, the errors on the disks should become apparent during their operation because you should be doing regular scrubs to find the errors. Putting the data somewhere, forgetting about it and not actually checking its still there for a few years is a pretty good recipe for disaster no matter how you store it. That said, I've seen a few cases where a drive fails, and the increased load on the other (similar age) disks sends another over the edge soon after, so one disk going bad should probably be an early warning that you're likely to see the other disks start to fail soon too (so don't hang about waiting to replace the dead one!)

  • by sandytaru ( 1158959 ) on Friday May 02, 2014 @09:09AM (#46898341) Journal
    Most tapes are written and then rewritten on a weekly or monthly basis. The medical office that was using LTO would have a daily incremental backup and then a once a week full backup. The software would run a verification check on each tape and give us a warning when it determined one was degrading.

    Tapes saved our ass when the motherboard blew out on their main server and took out the RAID to boot. We were able to retrieve the data from backup without any problem.
  • by stdarg ( 456557 ) on Friday May 02, 2014 @10:06AM (#46898765)

    To save that much I'd need to be using about 100TB of storage, which is a fairly small filer for a business, but an insane amount for a home user.

    That's an insane amount for most businesses too! I've helped some small business owning friends out with their computer needs before and they couldn't fill a 1 TB hard drive if they tried. One of them, a veterinarian, said he wanted to keep a copy of his xray images on Amazon S3 as an off-site backup. I thought ok that's going to be a lot of data. Total was around 60 GB for 8 years' worth of xrays. The database backup for his practice management software is about 3 GB compressed.

"I shall expect a chemical cure for psychopathic behavior by 10 A.M. tomorrow, or I'll have your guts for spaghetti." -- a comic panel by Cotham