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DOWNLOA Small business storage: Backup technology comparison chart

By Bill Detwiler Editor ·
Small businesses can suffer catastrophic equipment failures and natural disasters just as global organizations do. Unfortunately, many small businesses fail to adequately protect their critical data or have aging storage devices that should be replaced with newer, more efficient technology. This chart compares common devices within three backup technology categories: optical, hard drive, and tape.

Download and review the comparison chart:

Then, use this discussion to share your experiences installing, configuring, and supporting small business backup solutions. Which technology have you found to be the most reliable and user-friendly?

Also, let us know if our Backup technology comparison chart provides helpful information and if there's anything we can do to improve the document's format or content.

This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

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CD and DVD have different standard speed

by ritters In reply to DOWNLOAD: Small business ...

Your chart implies that CD and DVD have the same standard 1x speed - they don't. A DVD's 1x speed is about equal to a 20x CD ( this information, the data is a bit misleading with regard to optical storage.

Also, as a disadvantage to the USB and Firewire hard drives, I would have listed the potential of drive failure due to mishandling of the device.

Total cost per MB of storage capacity could help drive decisions along with mention of off site storage of a set of backups. This would make the (up front) cost of external hard drive backups pretty high compared the optical alternative.

Just my $0.02 worth.

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How about Iomega REV

by tom In reply to CD and DVD have different ...

I'm currently using the relatively new REV drive from Iomega. Other than it's proprietary nature it seems ideal for small businesses. I use the USB model, and if I need to, I can use it to back up either server, any of the work stations, etc. It comes with a decent backup utility, and you can do a straight file copy or compressed. Each disk holds 35 GB uncompressed. Hopefully it won't have reliability issues like the zip did. Anyone else using this?

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Incomplete list of options...

by Compuhorsy In reply to DOWNLOAD: Small business ...

As long as you are listing expensive tape backup systems which can also require expensive software to run backups on multiple servers and workstations, why not include hard drive based backup appliances like ? When you include the cost of software and media, their unit is not any more expensive than tape systems in the long run and has the added benefit of backing up many different OS platforms without needing additional software licensing. OS flexibility is important considering the rate of change in the tech industry.

For the record, I do not work for them but I am a satisfied customer.

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Add this technology to the comparison chart?

by Bill Detwiler Editor In reply to Incomplete list of option ...


Would you be interested in adding this information to the Small business storage: Backup technology comparison chart? You would need to provide information on the technology's capacity, approximate write speed, advantages, disadvantages, cost, and primary usage.

If so, I'll add this information when we published the chart's next update.

Has anyone else used a hard-drive-based backup solution? If so, what was your experience?

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Serial ata, or IDE drives in removable drawers

by BHunsinger In reply to Add this technology to th ...

We have used 80 gb HD in removalble drawers as a backup solution for a few years for small business servers. Run the script to Xcopy the requested files, shut down the machine and swap the drive. fire it back up.
recently we set up a hot swapable removable drawer using serial ata technology. The drawers are cushioned, and if you have 3 drives you have one on site: one at home one on the machine. If you want to use image technology you can. Drive is much more reliable than tape.

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Missing options

by avi In reply to DOWNLOAD: Small business ...

I think you forgot several good options for backup:
1. REV from IOmega - 35/90 GB, fast and low priced.
2. VXA2 from Exabyte tape unit - fast but the price of the media is high.
3. AIT1/AIT2/AIT3 from sony.

There is more than DAT and LTO.

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AIT-3 Tapes Not listed

by mahabbas In reply to DOWNLOAD: Small business ...

AIT-3 tape formats are not listed, Moreover I believe a major component of the backup technology is the backup software. I used to backup on DAT tapes havig a drive per server. The Media and drives suffered frequent failures.

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20+ years

by ozwes007 In reply to DOWNLOAD: Small business ...

I have worked in the IT industry for a lot of years and while a lot off very technical and sofisticated devices have been used to back-up, I have found that it all comes down to the users and how easy it is to back-up. At one site we use ghost images stored on another server(W2K A.D.),complimented with tape backup every day on 2 different servers, tapes taken off site. Another site we use the same, the tapes hardly ever leave the side of the machine even after numerous attempts to encourage this, still another we use a Raid Array plus an external HDD, taken offsite daily, the next site duplicates the main server monthly and daily backs-up the Data to CD. Another site simply duplicates the data to CD every week. Which is the best, all these sites where offered the same oppertunities for various backups and each chose differently. It really comes down to whats suits the client, as IT personal we can only ensure that our sites do backup one way or another, and push towards a backup that is cost effective, easy to use and meets the requirements,eg Data or whole systems.

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I-Omega Rev 35

by DormanM In reply to DOWNLOAD: Small business ...

This is a great alternative.

Price is fair for the amount of storage.
Cartriges are removable and hold 35 gig native
and up to about 90 gig compressed (dpending on data) and software ware used.
The Yosemite software that is provided is very good.

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by HOAGY In reply to DOWNLOAD: Small business ...

The most important aspect of a backup solution is that it happens automatically. People simply just do not perform manual data backups on a regular basis. I always install a tape drive and hope that they change tapes every day. I use Veritas Backup Exec and while the white paper says you can't restore individual files, he is wrong. I also create a disaster recovery set which significantly reduces downtime. I set the backup to occur after hours and speed isn't a big issue.

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