SUMMARY: Disk to Tape Virtualization devices

From: JV <>
Date: Thu Mar 11 2004 - 01:59:39 EST
I'm a little late in the summary, and perhaps my original question
said the HW issues.

Thanks to the people below for their contributions:
"Anthony Talltree" <>
"Petri Kallberg" <>
"David Foster" <>
"Brandon Cate" <>
And a few anonymous netizens

directions I had not considered:

Sun StorEdge Utilization Suite (aka SAM-FS)
Allows some nice Hierarchical Storage Management tricks - like
autoarchiving special filesystems to tape.

HP STORAGEWORKS offers some good storage virtualization tools.

FALCONSTOR - provides the same
functionality with software. You can supply your own disk for cheap.

AMANDA - offers disk-to-disk-to-tape staging if
one does not chose commercial backup software.

Check out similar HW products
Nexsan ( - a strong interest in the NEXSAN
A UK product -

A key feature is whether the disk2disk2tape array supports virtual
tape devices (/dev/rmt/*cn). That feature appears to be worth more
than $25K US.

I seem to have more time and creativity than money, so I am playing
with a SUN e450 with 20 slots for disks as my "array", ssh/rsync and
looking at upgrading to Veritas Netbackup 5.0 later this year.

Thanks to the following 3 fools for letting me know they are out of
the office:

Hautsalo Kari
Schuetz, Henrik
Brendan Doherty

---- original message ----

>I'm searching for a disk backup acceleration solution for my backup
>environment, often called "tape virtualization". 
>I want an inexpensive IDE or SCSI disk array to receive backup
>traffic over 100 Mbit & gigabit ethernet and store it for later
>backup by Veritas Netbackup 4.5 MP6. I figure only having 500GB-1TB
>of usable storage "hold" or stage these backups on disk directly
>connected to the Netbackup Master, who can then deliver a steady
>I/O stream to LTO gen-1 drives. We are having an awful time with 100
>Mbit Windows IP clients starving our tape drives and making them
>shoeshine. The LAN just can't deliver as as fast the LTO wants to go
>I have looked at high-end devices like the NetApp R150, it's just
>overkill and overbudget. I have seen a StorageTEK device from afar
>which emulates "/dev/rmt/*cn" paths to fool the tape backup software
>into writing to this disk device. After playing with Netbackup 4.5
>MP6, it appears that backup policies which specify DISK storage
>cannot multiplex (single stream at a time). Supposedly in Netbackup
>5.0 this goes multi-threaded. 
>Quantum - esp. the DX30
>I am looking for recommendations and experiences with these tape
>virtualization units. Mgmt is partial to big recognized vendors like
>Sun, IBM, StorageTEK, Quantum, NetApp etc with 24x7 1-800 support
>lines. I'd appreciate some URLs with what you folks use.
>Thanks in advance,
>Will summarize.

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Received on Thu Mar 11 02:06:07 2004

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