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The Importance of using Tape Backups

Why Tape Backups remain relevant and popular.


Tape Backups have been around a long time, with the first magnetic tape data storage being used in 1951 in the Eckert-Mauchly UNIVAC 1, which was the second commercial computer made in the US. Today you have many new options such as hard drives and the Cloud.

Yet magnetic tape backups and data storage remain relevant, if not necessary, due to a number of important features. Indeed, these features have kept tapes popular despite all the new data storage media that are available.

The fact is Tape backups have proved themselves repeatedly over the years and they offer a number of key features, which include:


Magnetic Tape is a very reliable means of data storage

Magnetic tape storage media has been shown to be long lasting, with life spans of storage tapes reaching up to 30 years or more, though normally they are used for periods of up to 10 years before being replaced. Hard drives, on the other hand, tend to be replaced twice as often. Tapes also have very good bit error rates when compared to hard drives, thus offering excellent reliability.


They are relatively low cost

The cost of tapes are not only cheaper than other storage media but they are significantly more energy efficient than other digital storage options. Combined with their long life spans and less frequent replacements this means their total cost of ownership is quite attractive to businesses large and small.


Tape Storage with high storage capacity

While Enterprise tape capacities have reached 10 TB (terabytes) future capacities are set to be even larger.

Sony announced in April 2014 that its advances in tape technology had allowed it to develop a magnetic tape that achieved the world’s highest areal recording density for tape storage media of 148 Gb/in2 (gigabits per square inch). This would allow data cartridges to store more than 185 TB (terabytes) of data.

Magnetic Tape technology is continually being developed and improved. Companies such as Oracle Corp, Fujifilm Recording Media USA, Inc., Sony Corporation, and IBM continue to develop magnetic tape data storage solutions and regularly announce technology breakthroughs.


Tape Storage by Iron Mountain

Iron Mountain offers some of the most high-tech and secure facilities in Southern Africa and the world. When it comes to offsite data storage you can rest assured your magnetic data tapes will be well looked after. Add to that flexible rotation schedules and verifiable chain-of-custody reports, audit trail reports, inventory and compliance audits and you have a complete solution for businesses of all sizes.

For more information, or to schedule a consultation Contact Iron Mountain today.


Image Credit: By NODC [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


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