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Volume 29, Issue 3

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Tape-based Back-up Systems Require Care and Proper Feeding

Written by  Doug Owens Thursday, 22 November 2007 03:23

There once was a company that purchased and configured a high-end, expensive, and full-featured tape library for the company’s system backups. Unfortunately, the back-up library was placed right beside the primary system. When the primary system got fried, so did the backup library. And then there’s the one about the regional-wide ambulance monitoring system that suffered a serious disk failure only to discover its automated backup hadn’t run for 14 months. A tape had jammed in the drive but no one had noticed. These are true stories that teach hard lessons: back-up technology can fail, as can the processes that are put in place to use them. And if your primary system can be taken down, then so can the backup system.


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