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It’s Time for Tape to Go on the Offensive

by on April 5, 2011

In recent years, tape has become a much-maligned storage medium, with proponents of disk-only data storage having predicted the pending demise of tape for the past several years. Yet tape lives on. And from where I sit, all signs indicate that tape will continue to happily coexist with disk and cloud for many years to come. Because while tape is by no means the gold standard for ALL data storage, it is an essential part of a balanced enterprise storage strategy.

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With this in mind, I submit that the time has come to end the disk vs. tape debate. Tape is still here. It has already proven that it retains an essential role in effective data management. Like the mythical paperless society, the tape-free enterprise hasn’t materialized—and won’t for the foreseeable future.

We can stop defending tape. Those of us who believe that tape has an ongoing storage role can stop protecting tape from the attacks and end-of-life predictions of disk-only proponents. We can instead play offense—focusing proactively on the benefits tape brings to the enterprise and the complementary role it plays to other storage media.

As we see with our clients every day, the benefits of retaining tape as a storage strategy staple are significant, especially when it comes to long-term storage and archiving, for which tape is particularly well suited. In an upcoming post, I’ll talk in more detail about the advantages of tape that make it an optimal solution for these business needs.

Tape isn’t dead, it doesn’t suck and it no longer needs defending. Have you considered the role tape plays—and will continue to play for the foreseeable future—in your balanced storage strategy?

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