Disk vs Tape - Sponsored Whitepaper

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Qualstar Corporation
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Cost of Ownership of Disk-Based vs. Digital Data Tape-Based Video Archives

By Christopher A. Stone, Brillig Consulting

The cost of storage has steadily fallen as new developments in magnetic recording have been introduced for both disk drives and digital data tape. With the enticing low price offered for high capacity Serial Advanced Technology Attachment (SATA) hard disks there is a temptation to just store your video archive on rotating media. But is this a wise move? This white paper looks at some of the obvious and not-so-obvious issues of archiving video data on both disk-based and tape-based systems.

Let's first address some of the traditional comparisons between disk and tape, leaving out cost for the time being. These are: • Capacity • Performance • Data Availability • Volatility

In the past, data tape cartridges always had more capacity than a hard disk. With the advent of SATA drives this is no longer the case. 1 Terabyte (TB) drives are readily available, while the largest capacity tape cartridge in common use is 800 Gigabytes (GB) (with a road map to 1.6 TB and 3.2 TB already planned).
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