09:01 AM

Shatter The Backup Window

HP's Ultrium tape drives are twice as fast and hold twice as much data as earlier versions

Storing data on tape doesn't get much respect these days. But for businesses that count on backup tapes to save the day when something damages data stored on hard disks, tape storage is a crucial part of their IT infrastructure.

For Scott Blancett, a project manager at $2 billion fiberglass roofing and insulation company Johns Manville, a new generation of tape storage can save him time, which will save his company money. Blancett is responsible for making sure that data on the company's worldwide operations is always available. He's looking at the second generation of Ultrium tape drives from Hewlett-Packard, which are twice as fast and hold twice as much as their predecessors. Johns Manville uses drives and tape libraries from Storage Technology Corp. based on the DLT standard.

The speedy Ultrium drives should let him reduce backup time from six to eight hours down to two hours, Blancett says. "We'll boot the DLT libraries out the door in about a year, according to the depreciation schedule."

The Ultrium drives, unveiled last week, are priced between $5,500 to $5,800, depending on configuration.

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