Archiving Projects-- TAPE vs. DVD

Shane Hathaway shane at
Thu Feb 9 20:04:18 MST 2006

justin gedge wrote:
> calling all sys-ops to a thread--
> We're starting discussions at work on archiving projects on DVD instead 
> of TAPE.  We are currently using DDS [various version depending upon 
> capacity needs]
> I've got a few initial concerns with moving to DVD -- and can see a few 
> benefits as well, but would appreciate any candid comments others have 
> through experience-- articles you've seen posted recently about the 
> different mediums etc...

I wouldn't use DVDs over tape.  But I would use UDO over tape, since UDO 
uses chemical processes that are believed to be stable for 50 years.

Spinning or MAID (massive array of idle disks) systems are potentially 
quite reliable if they scan and validate the repository often.  You've 
got to check out this thing:

Both products claim about the same price ($2/GB).  However, there are a 
lot of factors to weigh.  UDO is a proprietary technology, while SATA is 
implemented widely.  SATA drives are only good for 5 years, so you'd 
have to replace them ten times more often than UDO, although in a couple 
of years you'll probably be able to upgrade to terabyte hard drives 
(thereby decreasing the cost per gigabyte), while UDO isn't progressing 
as quickly.  Then again, maybe HD capacity has stagnated.  Hard drives 
provide much better access times and don't need a robotic library, but 
UDO is not susceptible to electrical surges.  UDO is more likely to 
survive a flood (Plasmon actually tested this.)

Personally, I'd pick UDO if it weren't proprietary.  As things stand 
right now, I don't know which I'd pick.


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