A few days ago, while sifting through the mundane, I ran across a blog from a CEO making a derogatory comment about tape and thought I’d post some food for thought.
When I first landed in the storage market in August of 2000, the ignorati were already babbling about the end of tape. Since that time, I’ve worked with account teams to put tape into the following Fortune 500 and similarly large government data centers: Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Aetna, Social Security Administration, NASA, Los Alamos, Boeing, John Deere, Verizon, Sprint, AOL, Yahoo!, TD Ameritrade and countless other enterprise customers.
The leading edge players buy tape because the economics and reliability can’t be beat over the long run. At a fraction of the acquisition cost, you can buy far more storage space with tape than you can disk. Furthermore, despite the hype, the cost of ownership for tape over time is also less. In the Clipper Group’s analysis of disk v. tape, they discovered a 23:1 TCO advantage for tape pointing to the inherent advantages tape delivers relative to disk over time.
The big boys are buying tape and they’re not going to stop. That’s a fact. Then again, anyone familiar with Fortune 500 level storage users would know that. Those who aren’t take pot shots at tape while resigning themselves to the entry-level and mid market spaces.
Reine, David and Mike Kahn, “Disk and Tape Square Off Again”, The Clipper Group, Feb 2008