Tape backup advice ?



  • Hi all,

    For Offsite Backup I am thinking of Tape Backup option.

    We are running Windows Server 2012 File Server with data around 5TB which needs to backed by Tape solution and rotate to offsite.

    Tape is one of the option we are thinking of. I am thinking of Full Backup of data for offsite (on Tape) instead of copying Onsite Backup data.

    Following are few queries comes to my mind :

    1. We may need to consider increase of data (around 5GB difference according to Incremental Backup daily happening) before getting Tape Backup, maybe we need to consider of 8TB or 10TB to backed up ?

    2. Just wonder what will be the performance difference b/w Tape and External HDD ?

    3. What are all requirements for Tape Backup solution ? a) Tape Library b) Tape Drives c) Backup software, right ?

    4. For backup software, currently we have EaseUS Todo Server Backup software, if it works for Tape, then fine, if not, may be Veeam Endpoint Free (if it works) ?

    5. So which model Tape library will suite us with what size of Tape Drives ? and rough pricing it may cost ?

    Thanks !



  • Why Tape, it's slow, difficult to transport and requires human interaction.

    Push your backups off site to an online storage provider like BackBlaze or Amazon or Azure or anything else.

    Tape, while cheap, still requires an upfront investment in hardware, using online storage does not.



  • I didn't see the 3-2-1 rule in there. I'd work on that first. Off-site tape backup only accounts for 1 of the 3 copies of data, and 1 of the 2 types of media, and does cover the off-site part.

    But you still need 2 more copies of data on another form of media.

    You should always have on-site backup. Just think what would you do if you lost just one file? You'd have to pay hundreds of dollars to get your tape back, or drive to go get it, all just to restore one little file.



  • Tape? No.



  • @DustinB3403 said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Why Tape, it's slow, difficult to transport and requires human interaction.

    Push your backups off site to an online storage provider like BackBlaze or Amazon or Azure or anything else.

    Tape, while cheap, still requires an upfront investment in hardware, using online storage does not.

    If that's the case, how it will be I replace Tape with External Hard Drive ?

    About Cloud, I am afraid of Bandwidth, we have 40Mbps down and 10Mbps. By the way, how you prefer to push the data to Cloud ? directly from Server to Cloud with some Agent or from Onsite Backup (QNAP NAS- my case) to Cloud with addons ? if



  • Tape advice: use 3M 996, 2 inch width at 30 IPS. No Dolby noise reduction. Align to 250 nWb/m^2, then drive the shit out of the levels for rock music.

    ....oh, you meant backup tape. advice = don't do it.



  • @Tim_G said in Tape backup advice ?:

    I didn't see the 3-2-1 rule in there. I'd work on that first. Off-site tape backup only accounts for 1 of the 3 copies of data, and 1 of the 2 types of media, and does cover the off-site part.

    But you still need 2 more copies of data on another form of media.

    You should always have on-site backup. Just think what would you do if you lost just one file? You'd have to pay hundreds of dollars to get your tape back, or drive to go get it, all just to restore one little file.

    Sorry, I didn't mentioned about Onsite Backup, but we do have it. We are using EaseUS Todo backup server on Windows Server 2012 to push Incremental Backup daily to QNAP NAS box which resides Onsite.



  • @RojoLoco said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Tape advice: use 3M 996, 2 inch width at 30 IPS. No Dolby noise reduction. Align to 250 nWb/m^2, then drive the shit out of the levels for rock music.

    ....oh, you meant backup tape. advice = don't do it.

    If I don't want to go for cloud option, and needs to take backup to offsite, so do you people recommend External hard drive as a replacement to Tape ?



  • @mobeen said in Tape backup advice ?:

    If I don't want to go for cloud option, and needs to take backup to offsite, so do you people recommend External hard drive as a replacement to Tape ?

    Yes. But didn't you say 8TB or 10TB?


  • Service Provider

    Nothing wrong with tape. It's a pain butncarries big benefits. LTO of course. Tapes are big, fast, cheap and durable.

    In addition to real tape, check out Starwind VTL which virtualizes tape with extreme levels of flexibility on amazon s3, glacier or both.


  • Service Provider

    @mobeen said in Tape backup advice ?:

    @RojoLoco said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Tape advice: use 3M 996, 2 inch width at 30 IPS. No Dolby noise reduction. Align to 250 nWb/m^2, then drive the shit out of the levels for rock music.

    ....oh, you meant backup tape. advice = don't do it.

    If I don't want to go for cloud option, and needs to take backup to offsite, so do you people recommend External hard drive as a replacement to Tape ?

    Isn't offsite tape a form of cloud? Cloud in this context is just another word for offsite.


  • Service Provider

    Tape is generally way faster than a hard disk. It's insanely fast these days.


  • Service Provider

    @mobeen said in Tape backup advice ?:

    @DustinB3403 said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Why Tape, it's slow, difficult to transport and requires human interaction.

    Push your backups off site to an online storage provider like BackBlaze or Amazon or Azure or anything else.

    Tape, while cheap, still requires an upfront investment in hardware, using online storage does not.

    If that's the case, how it will be I replace Tape with External Hard Drive ?

    About Cloud, I am afraid of Bandwidth, we have 40Mbps down and 10Mbps. By the way, how you prefer to push the data to Cloud ? directly from Server to Cloud with some Agent or from Onsite Backup (QNAP NAS- my case) to Cloud with addons ? if

    10mb/s will definitely make cloud storage options hard. Have you looked into increasing that as an option?



  • @scottalanmiller said in Tape backup advice ?:

    @mobeen said in Tape backup advice ?:

    @DustinB3403 said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Why Tape, it's slow, difficult to transport and requires human interaction.

    Push your backups off site to an online storage provider like BackBlaze or Amazon or Azure or anything else.

    Tape, while cheap, still requires an upfront investment in hardware, using online storage does not.

    If that's the case, how it will be I replace Tape with External Hard Drive ?

    About Cloud, I am afraid of Bandwidth, we have 40Mbps down and 10Mbps. By the way, how you prefer to push the data to Cloud ? directly from Server to Cloud with some Agent or from Onsite Backup (QNAP NAS- my case) to Cloud with addons ? if

    10mb/s will definitely make cloud storage options hard. Have you looked into increasing that as an option?

    Yeah, I may need to check about options and cost we have with our ISP.

    How about pushing the data to Cloud ? directly from Server or Onsite backup storage (NAS) ?

    Not sure, how secure the cloud one will be in case of viruses, while in case of moving Tape or External HDD to offsite will give us peace of mind (no connection, no virus).



  • @mobeen said in Tape backup advice ?:

    How about pushing the data to Cloud ? directly from Server or Onsite backup storage (NAS) ?

    My recommendation is the 3-2-1 rule.

    3 copies of your data (live, backup and off-site copy) 2 different medium, and one copy offsite.

    • Your production servers is your live, and counts as the 1st of 3.

    • Your onsite backup (to a NAS) would count as the second

    • The last would be to push off-site, which I recommend performing this push (or pull) from your on-site NAS or online storage provider.

    That would give you the best backup options.



  • @DustinB3403 said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Why Tape, it's slow, difficult to transport and requires human interaction.

    Well, two out of three ain't bad.

    Tape is fast as hell, plenty faster than anything you got for a pipe:
    https://www-03.ibm.com/systems/storage/tape/oem/lto6/full-high/specifications.html

    Difficult to transport? I can throw an LTO cartridge across the room and it's ready to go. It fits in my pocket, and really don't need much effort to put it in a box and have someone pick them up.

    Human interaction is a real concern, but that's what you pay smarthands for. I would have a guy come by the DC once a week, pull out an entire tray of tapes from the library, replace them with fresh tapes, and be out the door in minutes.



  • @PSX_Defector you have to account for the travel time.

    Sure tape performance is fast, but the pyhsical transport is slow.

    Hand carrying it poses risks as well, like risk from a natural disaster. The goal is to have a geographic separation beyond an hours drive.



  • we have issues with tape: no one wants the burder and responsibility of managing it. and company don't event provide insurrance for accidental damage of copies. tape managed by external company could be ok, but they ask -of course- lot of money for picking it . So offsite is going to be on a remote site for us (could or colo where we will place other stuff).



  • @scottalanmiller said in Tape backup advice ?:

    @mobeen said in Tape backup advice ?:

    @RojoLoco said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Tape advice: use 3M 996, 2 inch width at 30 IPS. No Dolby noise reduction. Align to 250 nWb/m^2, then drive the shit out of the levels for rock music.

    ....oh, you meant backup tape. advice = don't do it.

    If I don't want to go for cloud option, and needs to take backup to offsite, so do you people recommend External hard drive as a replacement to Tape ?

    Isn't offsite tape a form of cloud? Cloud in this context is just another word for offsite.

    Repeat : Not sure, how secure the cloud one will be in case of viruses, while in case of moving Tape or External HDD to offsite will give us peace of mind (no connection, no virus).

    Let's say if I have resolved the issue of Bandwidth by increasing, how about pricing for Cloud ? and not sure, how much space I should buy ? maybe I need to test it by Free Trial if they have ?

    Which cloud option do you suggest ? I think, Amazon Glacier is not suitable, as its for Cold Archive.


  • Service Provider

    @mobeen said in Tape backup advice ?:

    @scottalanmiller said in Tape backup advice ?:

    @mobeen said in Tape backup advice ?:

    @DustinB3403 said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Why Tape, it's slow, difficult to transport and requires human interaction.

    Push your backups off site to an online storage provider like BackBlaze or Amazon or Azure or anything else.

    Tape, while cheap, still requires an upfront investment in hardware, using online storage does not.

    If that's the case, how it will be I replace Tape with External Hard Drive ?

    About Cloud, I am afraid of Bandwidth, we have 40Mbps down and 10Mbps. By the way, how you prefer to push the data to Cloud ? directly from Server to Cloud with some Agent or from Onsite Backup (QNAP NAS- my case) to Cloud with addons ? if

    10mb/s will definitely make cloud storage options hard. Have you looked into increasing that as an option?

    Yeah, I may need to check about options and cost we have with our ISP.

    How about pushing the data to Cloud ? directly from Server or Onsite backup storage (NAS) ?

    Not sure, how secure the cloud one will be in case of viruses, while in case of moving Tape or External HDD to offsite will give us peace of mind (no connection, no virus).

    Depends, they talked about that at VeeamOn. With something like Starwind VTL on Glacier, the access time to retrieve is so slow that there are ways to effectively intervene before ransomware would successfully get your data.


  • Service Provider

    @DustinB3403 said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Sure tape performance is fast, but the pyhsical transport is slow.

    Slow in what sense? It's screaming fast in terms of Gb/s.


  • Service Provider

    @matteo-nunziati said in Tape backup advice ?:

    we have issues with tape: no one wants the burder and responsibility of managing it. and company don't event provide insurrance for accidental damage of copies. tape managed by external company could be ok, but they ask -of course- lot of money for picking it . So offsite is going to be on a remote site for us (could or colo where we will place other stuff).

    Then use robots, that's what big companies do. No human interaction needed. Stick a robot in your datacenter and voila.

    IBM was showing off their insane scale robot at VeeamOn, it was nifty.


  • Service Provider

    @mobeen said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Repeat : Not sure, how secure the cloud one will be in case of viruses, while in case of moving Tape or External HDD to offsite will give us peace of mind (no connection, no virus).

    You are aware that Amazon Glacier is tape in the cloud, right? :)


  • Service Provider

    @mobeen said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Let's say if I have resolved the issue of Bandwidth by increasing, how about pricing for Cloud ? and not sure, how much space I should buy ? maybe I need to test it by Free Trial if they have ?

    No one does free trials of storage. Since you way so little for what you use, there is no reason to. And you don't buy space, you use what you need.


  • Service Provider

    @mobeen said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Which cloud option do you suggest ? I think, Amazon Glacier is not suitable, as its for Cold Archive.

    Is that not what this would be? Tapes are cold archives already. So if Glacier isn't suitable, is tape suitable? They share that designation.

    BackBlaze B2 is cheaper than S3 and we really like it.



  • @scottalanmiller said in Tape backup advice ?:

    @DustinB3403 said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Sure tape performance is fast, but the pyhsical transport is slow.

    Slow in what sense? It's screaming fast in terms of Gb/s.

    The physical transportation from offsite storage to onsite recovery. It is slow in comparison.

    Highways speeds maybe.

    You quoted me, but clearly didn't get what I was saying.


  • Service Provider

    @DustinB3403 said in Tape backup advice ?:

    @scottalanmiller said in Tape backup advice ?:

    @DustinB3403 said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Sure tape performance is fast, but the pyhsical transport is slow.

    Slow in what sense? It's screaming fast in terms of Gb/s.

    The physical transportation from offsite storage to onsite recovery. It is slow in comparison.

    Highways speeds maybe.

    You quoted me, but clearly didn't get what I was saying.

    But that's normally far faster than cloud. How long does it take to pull down 6TB? How long does it take to drive a 6TB tape from 40 miles away? And tape scales, the time to retrieve 6TB is the same as retrieving 600TB.



  • @DustinB3403 said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Hand carrying it poses risks as well, like risk from a natural disaster. The goal is to have a geographic separation beyond an hours drive.

    That's what you pay Iron Mountain for. They have vaults that can withstand just about anything you throw at it. Short of a nuke going off in the city, then you have other problems to worry about than where your backups are.

    Sneakernet throughput is insane compared to most affordable pipes. It takes about 2 hours to go through a tape straight stream. LTO7 holds 6TB/12TB. Even factoring in the transport time of ~4 hours after pickup and 1 hour to put it in a box, you are looking at ~550Mbps with full 2:1 compression. I can sustain that speed from two of my DCs, but hell if I want to send it across to London or Singapore.

    Let's not forget about the fact that you are stuffing the pipe with all that traffic. I doubt most SMBs have even the ability to get a 10Gbps pipe I got. My 10Gbps pipe is not dedicated to our DR product, but all traffic. So even if I was replicating 6TB every 6 hours, I have plenty of room to allow others to do things. With most SMBs, they could hope for a 20Mbps up, but most are running on commodity turd pipes with shittastic peering which slows them down.

    Of course, this all predicates on what exactly you are backing up. I have 4PB in one DC alone. Tape makes sense. Most SMBs, once their digital packrat tendencies has been culled, don't have even enough to fill up an LTO4 tape.

    Cloud backup for small datasets, tape for large.


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    @PSX_Defector said in Tape backup advice ?:

    That's what you pay Iron Mountain for. They have vaults that can withstand just about anything you throw at it. Short of a nuke going off in the city, then you have other problems to worry about than where your backups are.

    Yeah, like your data being on tapes that are too hot to safely handle :)


  • Service Provider

    @PSX_Defector said in Tape backup advice ?:

    Sneakernet throughput is insane compared to most affordable pipes. It takes about 2 hours to go through a tape straight stream. LTO7 holds 6TB/12TB. Even factoring in the transport time of ~4 hours after pickup and 1 hour to put it in a box, you are looking at ~550Mbps with full 2:1 compression. I can sustain that speed from two of my DCs, but hell if I want to send it across to London or Singapore.

    And that is one tape. Tape really explodes when you need more than one. Say your backup spans ten LTO7s. Then suddenly you are driving around 60TB / 150TB at the same speed that you were driving around 6TB before. Until your restore size is larger than what fits in a minivan, tape just scales up "for free."


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