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Sustainability - Comparing Tape, HDD and SSD Sustainability Metrics

Presenting at Fujifilm’s 12th Annual Global IT Executive Summit was Shawn Brume of IBM. Shawn is currently the Tape Evangelist and Strategist for IBM’s Data Retention Infrastructures team. In this segment of his presentation, Shawn reviews storage sustainability issues and the CO2 reduction benefits of tape systems compared to HDD and SSD.



I'm going to start off and answer the very important questions first I did tie the bow tie secondly I wear it because a bow tie is never perfect and certainly data is never perfect I'm never perfect and as we talk to this sustainability it's important to understand you can find examples for absolutely anything to support any case everything in this is either derived from direct data or where I'm displaying something that's talking about the usage or energy consumption their averages so the IBM tape team sat down and said hey we're going to do a high level very usable sustainability on tape and then we'll be able to do Compares with the rest of the industry because nearly everybody reports on this or we have open data this is how it's laid out I'm not going to go through every single slide and every single aspect but here are the high levels we broke them down into things like raw material extraction material manufacturing supplier transportation and we kept it at the component level we saw Brad John's report this is the lto8 with .007 metric tons of co2e being emitted why most of it means there's no electric electricity associated with these very little we've got cooling we've got airflow effects but when the data's sitting there it's just sitting there I mean the median entertainment industry will speak to that and say look when we put it on the Shelf it just stays there as long as we can possibly keep it and then we may have to migrate it so very low impact even a thousand cartridges hey you're at seven metric tons for 30 years seven metric tons for 30 years let's start off with lto full High everybody knows lto full high it's easy to reference 1.4 metric tons of co2e by the way none of this data includes offsets for recycling so that bottom number you still get to recycle what's in the drive and there's very little E-Waste outside of the car the steel the aluminum all of those pieces can be recycled what drives this uh average life cycle of 6.585 years so give or take seven years based on all the data now we can't operate a tape drive really without a library so a TS 4500 IBM's Premier Scale out Library has all these components in it drive mounts assemblies LEDs computer interfaces and has a huge weight because it's got a whole lot of plastic and steel in it but in a 16.4 year average life cycle I just want to repeat that in 17 years even in that life cycle you're only expending 50 metric tons of co2e and we can break that down into drive frames which are more drives and more storage could call it a storage and performance pod it's only 14.4 metric tons it doesn't have a a accessor or a robot in it it doesn't have the brains the computer interfaces that are required it simply is a power supply and a whole bunch of slots for drives and cartridges 14.4 and an S frame even lower but it's not much lower even though it doesn't use any energy consumption and the reason for that is man that thing's got 1300 plastic cells in it and plastic is highly caustic in its production and when we compare this how do we compare well we've got to bring forward some comparable amount we're going to start with 28 petabytes okay real easy number for me to do and we're going to use the Bryce Canyon all right my ocp people know all about that if you're deploying an ocp in in your environment it's a good measurement because I can go out and get all the specs I know exactly what's in this box and how it's going to be deployed with 18 terabyte drives if I keep 28 petabytes of data for 10 years at 11 nines of data durability using Erasure coding it's going to cause it's going to cost the environment 1954 metric tons of co2e just to keep that data around and if these are archives wow how impacting is that when you compare it to IBM's latest delivery in tape automation at 78.1 78.1 metric tons easy compare what does that mean if you moved 28 petabytes of data off of HDD and on to tape you would be able to power 10 households for a year every single year you kept that 28 petabytes of data every single year you kept that data so that's a lot of energy how much give or take 146 000 kilowatts for 28 petabytes of data with an ocp deep solution or tape at around 7098 kilowatt hours for the entire year right huge difference I do this compare again not as it's Flash versus tape but as let's look at the sustainability of these Solutions even with a very small 500 terabytes at least in the tape world that's very small which is one little stackable for those of you have like a ts-4300 or a 3u stackable that's all that is it's it's not even a full one with lto nine keep that data for 10 years anticipate that you're going to roll it at 5.2 years 46.7 metric tons of co2e versus 14.8 CU metric tons so again even at the lowest amounts your contribution and the offsets that you may have to do let you lead with something that's very low if you're measuring p-u-e what does this do to the poe you instantly go well I I have this example of 146 000 versus 7 000. wow I could really change my Pue does it mean I have to set expectations yes does it mean that data now lives somewhere where it's more archived absolutely but do you really need your third copy of HDD to be on HDD or could it all just go to tape.

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