HP Removable Disk and Tape Storage - A Guide to RDX and LTO Ultrium
No-one likes to think about bad news, but it’s a reasonable
assumption that at some point your business will need to cope
with an unexpected loss of data. It need not be a major disaster
like a fire,x flood or theft; it could just be a simple human error.
Whatever the cause, you can’t afford to take chances. Losing
data could mean losing customers, revenue and hard earned
profits. So you need to take very good care of it.
Protecting your data is about more than just
backup and recovery. You need to find fast,
efficient ways to handle bigger files, such as
databases, productivity documents, video
and other rich media, email systems and
other information that users access day in,
In the event of any threat to your data –
including that worst-case scenario when
everything suddenly grinds to a halt – it’s
vital that you have an effective backup and
recovery strategy ready to sort things out. If
you’re a longstanding DAT user, you may now
be experiencing the squeeze of ever more
data to backup and an ever narrower window
in which to do it. With a choice of two faster,
higher capacity removable storage options
from HP - RDX and LTO Ultrium - you can
benefit from HP quality and reliability and
new technology that will grow to meet your
business needs. If you’re using DAT 320, this
media will no longer be available after the
summer of 2014, so HP is advising customers
to begin planning a move to RDX or LTO
Ultrium ready for when cartridges become
difficult to source.
This guide explains how newer HP removable
backup and recovery technologies minimize
the risk and consequences of data loss,
improve overall backup performance and
provide automated solutions that are easy to
set up, easy to use and extremely robust.
HP RDX and HP StoreEver
HP offers two different solutions for small
and mid-sized companies: RDX Removable
Disk technology and StoreEver LTO Ultrium
tape. Either will safely secure your business
against the unexpected and both offer a wide
choice in capacity and performance to make
the perfect fit for your business.
Whether you choose HP RDX or LTO Ultrium,
you can count on the same outstanding
quality, reliability and customer support that
millions of businesses have come to trust
from HP Storage solutions.
HP RDX removable disk cartridges
RDX is a removable hard disk drive (RHDD)
storage technology. It looks and feels like a
rugged, portable tape backup solution but
gives you the high performance of a disk for
reading and writing data.
RDX technology is ideal if your company
requires fast access to large amounts of
business-critical data using workstations or
servers, but doesn’t need or want to rotate and
keep numerous cartridges for extra protection.
With more than 90% of the RHDD market, RDX
is the most popular RHDD solution for small to
medium enterprises (SMEs). Here’s why:
Fast backup and restore performance.
RDX backs up data at hard drive speeds and
restores critical files in seconds via USB 3.0.
A full 1 TB restore takes around five hours
to complete. You can save images, files,
videos, entire design projects, drawings,
plans, customer records, accounts or
inventory databases, and get any of the
data back in just a few clicks.
Very easy to use.
The simplicity of RDX
means you don’t need an IT specialist to
manage and configure it. Every change
made on your system can be captured
and backed up as it happens using HP
Continuous Data Protection (CDP) or
scheduled routines. You can even just
drag and drop files via Windows or Mac OS
X Finder. RDX includes Windows backup
mode to leverage the benefits of integrated
applications on that operating system.
Room to grow within your budget.
choice of 320 GB, 500 GB, 1 TB and 2 TB HP
RDX cartridges that are interchangeable on
the full range of RDX docking stations.
Easy to use hardware.
A compact, plug
and play, external, internal or rack mounted
USB 3.0 dock makes it simple for you to
switch from one cartridge to another and
scale up to bigger capacities. Cartridges
cannot be removed while backups are
running or scheduled. Staff can safely run
local backups and rotate media without
specialist skills or training.
Portable, rugged and shockproof
RDX can take the knocks of
being swapped around in a busy office.
The enhanced cartridge design features a
sealed interface to make it dust and debris
proof. Plus there’s no drive or media wear
Compatibility with popular backup
HP Data Protector Express, CA BrightStor
ARCServe Backup and Symantec
With HP RDX you can set up and run
automated backup procedures
that you don’t have to remember to do it.
Everything’s taken care of.
Long lasting, reliable media.
usage life of 5,000 load/unload insertions
compared to 50 for DAT tapes) and a 10-
year archival life, you can safely move data
off site for disaster recovery, archive or data
HP LTO Ultrium
Many smaller organizations now have
the means to generate huge data assets,
particularly in online environments. So you
may need the kind of performance that
comes with RDX, plus the media rotation and
archive stability and efficiency that comes
with a tape solution like DAT technology.
Switching from DAT to LTO Ultrium may look
like a huge leap in terms of cost, capacity and
performance – but now could be the right time
to move to a more powerful solution.
Compare, for example, the cost of today’s
fuel-efficient cars to yesterday’s models.
Either will get you from A to B, but over
time the greater power, performance and
efficiency of the newer vehicle will soon
reward your investment compared to
continuing with the old model. And in a data
storage setting, HP LTO-3, LTO-4, LTO-5 or
LTO-6 will give you those efficiencies and
deliver a much faster, longer lasting solution,
however fast your business grows.
The HP StoreEver LTO Ultrium tape portfolio
is HP’s flagship range of tape backup devices.
Based on the LTO Ultrium format, an
open standard with a well-defined eight
generation roadmap, it delivers up to 6.25
TB compressed data on a single low-cost
cartridge, fast performance and outstanding
reliability. HP’s rugged design builds on
superior LTO technology and adds advanced
features like Linear Tape File System (LTFS)
and AES-256 encryption to create a new level
of data protection.
An entry-level LTO-3 or even LTO-4 solution
may be just right for your business needs
today. But the most advanced HP LTO-6
solutions have over three times the capacity
(6.25 TB compressed) of the largest RDX
RHDDs at 2 TB and operate at a transfer rate
many times greater than that of DAT (1.4 TB
an hour). Remember, however, that tape drive
technology should be matched to the server
platform being protected. This ensures better,
more reliable performance and reduced wear
The HP ProLiant DL380p G8 server is the
ideal Simply StoreIT server platform for small
and medium sized businesses. This ProLiant
server delivers a suitable hardware platform
incorporating key features such as integrated
management, configuration flexibility and
industry leading performance, which best
aligns with the Simply StoreIT maturity model
recommendations in the technical white paper
HP Simply StoreIT Data Protection for tape
HP LTO or RDX: Which is right for you?
Reasons to choose HP RDX:
You have 2 TB or less of data to protect.
You need fast access to backed up and
One copy of your data meets your business
Reasons to choose HP LTO Ultrium:
1.You need to protect more than 2 TB of data.
You require data encryption.
You need more than one copy of your data.
LTO Ultrium drives and automation products
have the sophistication of SCSI, SAS or Fiber
Channel interfaces, which means that they are
more complicated to set up and configure.
While the level of complexity isn’t that great,
they are not as user friendly as plug-and-play
USB peripherals like RDX or DAT drives.
Installing a tape autoloader or library to
implement a multi-cartridge, backup rotation
system also requires a little bit more technical
knowledge and affinity for software. But it’s
worth remembering that once it’s up and
running, an automated system needs very
The price of LTO Tape cartridges compares
well with older DAT media and is lower than
the price of an RDX cartridge. However, LTO
Ultrium tape drives and automated devices
are more expensive than RDX docking units.
So unless you need a more sophisticated
media rotation strategy and higher tape
performance, you’ll be better off with RDX.
The latest LTO Ultrium devices remain the
most cost-effective option for archiving large
datasets. Unlike spinning disk drives, tape
drives do not need to be constantly powered
on and will default into hibernation mode
after short periods of inactivity bringing
energy and power savings. When tape is used
for long-term archiving, energy savings cut
the total cost by 93 percent compared to
spinning disk, which requires 238 times
more energy than tape.
While RDX has a better cost per gigabyte (the
price of the solution divided by the capacity
of each cartridge), in real terms it can be
relatively costly compared to tape media.
A tape drive is more expensive initially than
RDX, but the much lower cost of tape media
compared with RDX media will balance out
the higher purchase price of the hardware
over a three-year ownership cycle.
The real cost of migration is not in the initial
investment but rather what the solution
costs during its working life. So consider
this in the light of your rotation strategy (the
number of cartridges you expect to have in
use for daily, weekly and monthly backups)
and the number of copies of your data that
you think you will need (based on whether
you will be using CDP, Full, Incremental or
Migrating information to new media is a
common-sense approach that leads to lower
ownership costs. You’ll use fewer tapes
and be able to store more data in the same
physical space. Innovative software also
makes organizing and tracking your data a
Since RDX and tape offer many of the same
operational benefits, the usage model and cost
will be the key factors in choosing between the
two different technologies. BackupWorks.com has
all the know-how to help you make the right
choice. Call us at 866 801 2944 to discuss your storage needs.
As an experienced long term leader in small
and medium sized business data protection
solutions, BackupWorks is equipped with all the information needed to help
you make an informed choice about which
of our RDX and LTO Ultrium products will
work best for you. Either way, you’ll have
the peace of mind that, whatever happens,
you can rely on BackupWorks to take very good care of you.