What do you use?

Jason Bacon jbacon at mcw.edu
Fri Jan 2 08:37:28 PST 2004

On Wednesday 31 December 2003 02:04 pm, Francisco wrote:
> On Wed, 31 Dec 2003, Jason Bacon wrote:
> > 3ware IDE RAID.
> Agree on the 3ware controllers.
> > No such thing as cheap tape backups.  :-(
> If the amount of data can compress into a CD or DVD you could consider a
> burner.
> Moreover, although not a replacement for a tape backup or burning to
> CD/DVD you could also consider having an extra disk outside the RAID for
> backups. For example to keep multiple days of data on the second disk for
> easy/quick access.

We're using external USB disks for medium-term archival, and various optical 
media for long-term.  DVD-RAM is the most convenient, albeit slow and 
non-portable (R/W UDF support isn't quite there yet, so we're stuck with UFS 
for now).  With a USB2 interface, the USB disks are pretty fast, and you 
can't beat the convenience.  

One has to be very careful with USB disks on Unix, though, since they can be 
unplugged without warning while the filesystem is mounted, causing serious 
filesystem damage.  I experimented with various solutions (e.g. automounting 
and unmounting with synchronous write enabled), but nothing gave 100% 

Our RAID systems (ICP Vortex SCSI and 3ware IDE) are backed up on Mammoth or 
AIT tapes with autochangers using afio and chio.  Not a cheap solution at ~ 
$10,000, but there's no other way to automatically back up 1/2 terabyte on 
media that can be easily stored off-site.

Good luck,


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