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This is the age old argument about tape vs. disk.  Though you make several observations based on history, you haven’t necessarily included all sides of the argument.  Tape technology has again answered the call by increasing capacity and speed with LTFS…which not only is much cheaper but also will soon surpass the speed of disk.  All this while being a green solution!  Additionally, there are definite thresholds for being fully cloud capable related to security issues, compliance, scaling data requirements, and the overall spanning data pool growth.  Many SMB and even large companies are able to manage these thresholds but others have massive data scaling taking place.  So it simply does not make sense to move legacy or point-in-time data to have it all in “The Cloud”.  Costs scale, as do security management requirements related to breach (for which there remain serious concerns).  Tapes cannot be hacked, especially offline.


I understand that “The Cloud” means many things to different people and the plethora of options can cause confusion. There are in fact many great cloud solutions available today and RPO’s require immediate failover/access.  However again, what is the sense in paying 3, 4, 5 times the cost (or even higher) just to have everything in the cloud?  Storage and recovery are two different things! This is just the start of my argument.


As an IT professional, I am an advocate for both tape and disk.  In my experience, I have seen many companies move to the cloud, replication and/or entirely disk only to still qualify a need for having archive offline data on tape.  Just take a look at EMC World blogs where “Tape in the Cloud” is the biggest blog thread.  As for the cloud itself, I realize there have been many enhancements to security, yet it is still a concern among professionals and will remain as such as long as it is so readily accessible. 


The world is populated with some really intelligent people!  Sadly, as long as there is a challenge to get access (hack), there will always be someone willing to try. With that said, the question for any organization is risk vs. convenience.  Tapes of course can be lost as well.  However the chances of even gaining access, let alone the ability to read the tape based data (once in hand), are extreme.


From my experience in knowing and working with many CIO’s, VP’s of IT, and IT professionals, is that multiple mediums including disk, tape and cloud all have a place computing. Rather than endorsing cloud only, why not promote a wide array of solutions?

2 years, 10 months ago on 7 Reasons Why You Need To Move From Archival Tapes To Cloud Backup Solutions