[Nottingham] Tape Backup Systems

Richard Bagshaw richard at bagshaw.co.uk
Tue Apr 15 12:03:55 BST 2008

Thanks for the feedback guys - it was very handy.

In our circumstance we had to use a tape system because we have quite a
large volume of data spread over multiple servers, also a big big point was
the offsite backup stuff and HDDs just dont seem suited as much for that.
In the end I decided to setup a raid-1 CentOS server with an LTO-2 tape
drive, just checked that everything is in order with modinfo st and cat
/proc/scsi/scsi etc ...

The next step which I have just started is configuring "Amanda" - at the
moment I am just running amtapetype -f /dev/nst0 to identify media  and I
guess this takes a while ... oh well, time to slack off for a bit I guess


On Mon, Apr 14, 2008 at 12:13 PM, Robert Postill <robertpostill at yahoo.co.uk>

> On 12/04/2008, at 4:52 AM, David Bean wrote:
> > Compare the sustained transfer rate of a hard disk to a tape. A modern
> > Tape such as an LTO4 can outperform an equivalent external hard disk.
> > One issue is that some combinations of RAID arrays, filesystems and file
> > usage (lots of small files are bad) cannot provide data quick enough to
> > keep up with the minimum streaming speed of a tape.
> >
> My experience is that LTO4 is capable of keeping up with low-end internal
> hard disk but if you're backing up any of:
> * A SAN/NAS rig
> * Fibre Channel drives
> *A decent RAID array
> *Multpath I/O
> you're in bother.  For a heavy workload like that you'll need something
> like a 9840 or T10000 drive.  Although expect a rig with that kind of
> hardware (12 drives, fibre channel interface and  600 or so tapes to start
> at 100k USD) to be a serious money piece of kit for the kind of company
> that's got very deep pockets ;)  I feel like we're at a point where we just
> don't have the capacity for the home user or small business/organisation
> most of us work for any kind of responsible backup.  So a couple of hard
> disks is about the best option you've got.
> Also I'd say (in a quick Linux gloat) that Windows servers (never mind
> clients) *never* can keep up with Linux/Solaris machines, so all this is
> moot if you have Windows.
> Robert
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Richard Bagshaw
richard at bagshaw.co.uk
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