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Tape backup for home use?

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
I have a project in mind that will require a lot of storage. I am thinking about a RAID 5 array with some seagate archive drives for hot storage, and I would like to expand that to some long term media storage. I looked into burning data to high density blu rays but it is not at all cost effective. I am thinking about trying out tape drives, as you can get about 6TB of tape for like 100$. I would use it as a backup in case my RAID 5 array gets corrupted or I manage to kill more than a single drive before I can do a restore.

Getting tape is pretty easy, but shopping for tape readers is very confusing. I see lots of models going for thousands of dollars. I don't need a very sophisticated where I can read multiple tapes at the same time, I just need to be able to write to high density, cheap tapes and I need to be able to backup from tape at speeds that are reasonable. If I takes me a week to restore all of my data that won't be the end of the world or anything.

Is tape a cost effective solution for backuping a large collection of home media (maybe 50TB tops)? What do I need to know when shopping for tape readers and tapes? Thanks smile.gif
post #2 of 33
Pretty interesting idea you have here. I apologize for not having anything useful to contribute, but I'll be learning with you. biggrin.gif
post #3 of 33
Lto7 is uncompressed/native 6tb. Its not cheap for a drive, $2500-4500. And you have to be able to feed it with data, or your drive will burn up respooling back, to put data on. If you cant feed it 300 megabytes/s, your better off trying something else. They are all SAS connected, so you would beed a card for that, on a decent bandwidth system. If you are putting mpeg/jpeg type material, which is already compressed, you will get closer to the 6tb listed for lto7, and not the 15tb listed. They are reliable, providing they are in a clean, temperature appropriate environment, and you feed the data at the speed it needs.
post #4 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dyseus View Post

Lto7 is uncompressed/native 6tb. Its not cheap for a drive, $2500-4500. And you have to be able to feed it with data, or your drive will burn up respooling back, to put data on. If you cant feed it 300 megabytes/s, your better off trying something else. They are all SAS connected, so you would beed a card for that, on a decent bandwidth system. If you are putting mpeg/jpeg type material, which is already compressed, you will get closer to the 6tb listed for lto7, and not the 15tb listed. They are reliable, providing they are in a clean, temperature appropriate environment, and you feed the data at the speed it needs.

Interesting... I am not sure I can sustain 300MB/S with a 3 or 4 drive RAID setup using slow disks, and I am definitely not going to eat 2500+ dollars to get a drive. Also, not planning to get into SAS either... looking for something that will work with consumer hardware or close to it. Seems like tape might not be realistic for me.

Is there another form of long term storage you would suggest? Maybe there are some older/defunct tape drives and tape types that would be cheaper and easier to implement?
post #5 of 33
You really shouldn't be using SMR Drives in a RAID 5.

it sounds like an accident waiting to happen when re-build times come.
post #6 of 33
Maybe you need something like this

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eCz-IixxR_k
post #7 of 33
My best bet is fast swap hard drives.


Also zfs.
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post #8 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DVLux View Post

You really shouldn't be using SMR Drives in a RAID 5.

it sounds like an accident waiting to happen when re-build times come.

Yes, you're right. IMO nobody should use RAID 5 as their only form of backup, even with enterprise drives. The potential to error on a rebuild is just too high for data you actually care about.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TLCH723 View Post

Maybe you need something like this

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eCz-IixxR_k

Very funny.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mega Man View Post

My best bet is fast swap hard drives.

Also zfs.

Hard drives as cold storage makes me uneasy. If they are plugged in I have the potential to know if my backup is in good shape or not. When you swap a hard drive, you never really know how good of condition the sectors are until its too late.

ZFS isn't a bad suggestion. I might look into that. The copy on write feature and the protections against corruption look neat. I don't really care about the performance advantages of a RAID setup at all, I really want backup and data integrity. I should do more research on it.

I wish there was a technology for consumers that provides reliable backup, but it looks like there isn't. Hard disk are just not reliable enough in the long term, and you know, they are expensive when you are dealing with more than a few terabytes of data.

Right now I am thinking about building an array of independent RAID 1 volumes all stitched together in a JBOD, using software raid in either linux or windows. That way if I lose a bunch of drives or get some bad sectors on a rebuild, I only lose a portion of my data, and I can build it up with uneven size drive pairs over the long term. Still stupid expensive though compared to tape, and not as reliable. This make me sad frown.gif. Open to any other suggestions if you guys have any.
Edited by mothergoose729 - 10/4/17 at 9:54am
post #9 of 33
Cold storage you have 2 copies (at a min) that you swap out ( insert time frame here) and it is just the 3rd redundancy- 2 backups on-site, 1 offsite. Would only be used if you lost the first 2.
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post #10 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by mothergoose729 View Post

Very funny.

Oops I read that you have 500TB of media.
But on serious note, I still recommend something like that, well a smaller one.
If you have a extra computer laying around, you can just get a raid card and HDDs.
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