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Removable disk drives vs. tape storage

RDX vs Tape

The appeal of removable disk lies in both its portability and the fact that, unlike comparable tape storage solutions, you have the option of fast random access as well as very high data transfer rates.

Removable disk is a particularly viable data backup choice for the prosumer and small-office home-office (SOHO) market., but beyond that, it still has an important role to play for instance, remote offices and branch offices often rely on tape. Removable disk could be a faster and more appealing alternative, particularly since it can be configured to use RAID to enhance data protection.  At the lower end of the market it is an easy replacement for tape but if you are a larger organization and have already made a big investment in tape infrastructure it may not make sense.

Removable disk drives' speed and portability also make them a strong contender when data backup becomes disaster recovery. Getting through a data restore would be much faster using removable disk as compared to tape.

However you won't save money relative to tape. Nor is removable disk necessarily better in other measures. It isn't better than tape and it isn't worse -- they both face risks from magnetic sources, heat and radiation, and either could be ruined by being left in a hot car. Physically moving so much data around so easily could also be considered a risk with removable disk the best solution is to encrypt all of your data.

The crucial differences between removable disk and tape probably come down to ease of use and speed. Removable disk storage generally wins in the category of speed -- RDX removable disk can deliver up to 40 MBps. Price and capacity are also some of the biggest differences between disk and tape. Removable disk generally follows the overall trend in disk drives -- lagging the performance of similar capacity drives that aren't removable by about a year.

Product manufacturers are also hopping on board. "Manufacturers like HP and Dell, where they might have offered an Iomega Zip Drive in the past, now are likely to include a docking station for a removable disk drive.

Removable disk drives also integrate naturally into most existing data backup software. for example EMC Retrospect recognizes which disks are the removable ones and reminds you when to do backups.

For the most part the docking stations have a USB port, Companies such as ProStor is trying to get the industry to standardize on their solution and they are working hard to make that broader adoption occur, sofar most if not all of the big players have jumped on board, with the likes of IBM RDX, HP RDX, Imation RDX, Dell RDX (RD1000), Quantum RDX and Tandberg Data RDX all offering a complete line of removable disk storage, with cartridges randing from 160GB to 1TB.

Although removable disk drives are faster than tape, tape is definitely the dominant player in general, especially for enterprise-type backup, but removable disk is clearly becoming a great alternative for many uses.

Complete the form below for more information regarding RDX removable disk storage, or call us toll free at 866 801 2944 for a free storage consultation.


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