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Question for tape backup

Hi, experts

I have a general question about a tape backup. We have outsourced tape backup services outside our group, but it is getting time to do it by ourselves. So, I would like to seek advices/suggestions from experts on this issue before we start buying hardware and software.

We have about 4TB of active files and directories to backup in our production machines, which include file servers, mirrors of desktop home dir/laptop home dir/external drives etc. We still use tape backup since we need to keep those data for more than 10 years. And we now consolidated those mirror locations to three machines , each machine contains over 1 TB of mirrored files and directories. One of reasons that outside group is giving up our tape backup was the work load. It seems that troubleshooting activities of hardware/software related issues around tape backup is killing them.

Could you advise me your opinions about the following issues ?

We are thinking to connect tape backup machine through scsi interface, but not sure about it yet.

1. hardware: recommended hardware/types of tape etc
2. software : recommended software [I only know akeia, but is it good enough ?] 3. backup strategy: we consolidated mirrored files onto three machines now, but was it a good idea since disk space to backup is quite large ? 4. workload : should I expect how many hours of work required every day or per month related to tape backup ?
5. are there any issues I should be aware of ?
6. any issues in installation/setup/maintenance related to recommended framework above?


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