Inside TDV - The Data Vault Blog

Google Understands Importance Of Magnetic Tape Backups

It seems like a bit of an anecdotal oddity that one of the largest cloud computing providers in the world places it’s faith in technology from a much older era, but in the swiftly changing business environment such situations are not uncommon. When it comes to backups, consistency and reliability are the central tenets that many planners are looking for; with these needs in mind magnetic tape backup stands out from the crowd.

In 2011, Google famously had an issue with their widely used Gmail messaging platform when the email of over 130 million users was misplaced. Faced with widespread media coverage and increasing client discontent, their technology backup division turned to a solution that was rapidly deployable. According to Raymond Blum, chief reliability engineer: “Redundancy doesn’t do what people think, if you make five duplicates of data on hard drive mirrors, you’ve got five bad copies… this outage showed that redundancy is not a recovery strategy.” In the case of a zero-day attack, “integrity may be jeopardized everywhere that data is replicated.”

By shifting their focus from finding a hard drive or cloud based backup solution to their tape drive system, the team was able to get the information restored in roughly 30 hours – impressive considering the sheer amount of data involved. The simple reality is that organizations need more than replication and cloud computing: they also need backups, preferably in formats that are less vulnerable to environmental conditions or digital manipulation.

As the nation prepares for the onset of the dual hurricane and tornado seasons, disaster recovery planning needs to be on the forefront for all information specialists. There are no shortcuts to the peace of mind that can be found in a well tested, robust plan for worst case scenarios; and magnetic tape can still be a critical component in that infrastructure. While nobody enjoys doing backups, they are the only way to be certain that the data you are stewarding has durability and integrity and that the applications and systems that are generating, processing, sharing, storing and networking the data are adequately protected by your strategy.

With over 30 years of experience, The Data Vault has been helping guide organizations through the changing information management field since 1984. From tape rotation to cloud backups, our team of experts can help craft a customized solution to meet your business objectives while fitting into budgetary constraints. Contact us today and one of our representatives will be more than happy to reach out about any questions or concerns you may have!


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