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Archive your data with HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions


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This paper overviews how archive differs from backup and how HP StoreEver Tape Library solutions help provide the answer to the challenges of archive.

This paper overviews how archive differs from backup and how HP StoreEver Tape Library solutions help provide the answer to the challenges of archive.

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  • 1. Business white paper Archive your data HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions
  • 2. Business white paper | HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions Table of contents 3 Executive summary 3 Archive and backup are not the same 4 Business drivers for the growth of tape archiving 5 The benefits of archiving to tape 6 The value of LTFS for archive solutions 8 Archive solutions that leverage HP StoreEver Tape 12 Conclusion 12 Call to action
  • 3. Business white paper | HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions Executive summary Worldwide tape media capacity shipments are reaching record levels.1 A key driver for why more data is being stored on tape than ever before is its powerful blend of cost-effective, scalable, dependable, fast, removable, and easy to use storage. Tape storage continues to deliver a powerful solution to the challenges of exponential data growth across a wide set of storage goals and vertical markets. For cloud applications and disaster recovery, tape provides offline data protection and the last line of defense vs. virus attacks, natural disasters, or data corruption. For tiered storage and backup and recovery, tape can help optimize price/performance by moving data that does not require fast access onto the lowest cost tape tier. But a key usage model for tape, now and in the future—enabled by a growing ecosystem of Linear Tape File System (LTFS) based solutions—is archive, for which tape continues to offer the lowest cost solution for long-term data retention and reliable retrieval. This paper addresses four key questions: • How does archive differ from backup? • What are the business drivers for the growth of archiving? • What are the challenges associated with archiving? • How can HP StoreEver Tape Library archive solutions help provide the answer to these challenges? As we answer these questions, you will get a sense of why tape is uniquely positioned to be what one analyst has eloquently described as the “digital curator of the information age”.2 Archive and backup are not the same It’s important to emphasize the distinction between backup and archive strategies. As figure 1 illustrates, archive and backup applications are distinct processes with different objectives and therefore impose different requirements on the storage systems that they utilize. A backup is a secondary copy of production data used for restore or disaster recovery in the case of data loss or data corruption. By contrast, an archive is a primary copy of less frequently accessed information that has been moved off the primary production disk to lower cost secondary/tertiary storage for data management or governance and regulatory compliance purposes. It’s important to remember therefore that backup is separate from archiving. A backup operation copies data, an archiving operation moves data. A backup dataset is ultimately overwritten whereas archived information is often a permanent record or data set stored without alteration or deletion for an extended period of time. Usually, IT performs backups to alleviate short term risks and boost disaster recovery capability. Conversely, it archives data to support much longer term risk reduction, ensuring that historical data remains accessible if needed. The best archive platforms should therefore be able to scale to multi-petabyte capacity, offer high reliability, long life of the stored data, easy access, simple integration, and low cost. Tape fits these requirements perfectly. Santa Clara Consulting Group, Q2 2013 Tape Tracker 1 2 F red Moore, Horison Inc., “Tape The Digital Curator of the Information Age” 3
  • 4. Business white paper | HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions Figure 1. Understanding backup vs. archive—what’s the difference? Backup Archive Method Copy of production data Original removed from production Purpose To recover data in the event of data loss, destruction, corruption etc. • To retain data for regulatory compliance, e-Discovery support • Helps shorten backup and recovery windows • Reduce total costs of storage Data policies Recovery Time Objectives (RTO) Recovery Point Objectives (RPO) • Retention periods Data handling Duplicate copies are periodically overwritten Data cannot be altered or deleted before retention expires Retention period Short term Long term • Access controls Business drivers for the growth of tape archiving Tape digital archiving projects are growing rapidly, driven by three key business and technology needs: Storage optimization and cost efficiencies While keeping all of your data on high speed disk might seem ideal for access purposes, to do so could be very expensive in terms of both hardware purchases and the cost of power, cooling, and physical space. It makes more sense to store data that requires fast retrieval on disk while moving less frequently accessed or inactive data to a lower cost tape tier archive. This has the added advantage of enabling you to meet your disaster recovery and backup SLAs for the business critical data and applications on your primary storage (see figure 2). Figure 2. How archiving simplifies backup Business Application Business Application Monthly Extraction Production Production Weekly Full Recovery Backup Before • Backup and Recovery Performance Issues • Storage Footprint 4 Active Weekly Full Archive Static, Compressed Recovery Monthly Full Backup After • Backup and Recovery in significantly reduced time • Significantly reduced Storage Footprint • Improved IT efficiency and costs Recovery Backup
  • 5. Business white paper | HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions Compliance In today’s complex regulatory landscape, you need to retain more data and for longer periods of time to meet both external compliance requirements (for highly regulated industries such as finance, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, energy) as well as internal compliance (for requirements such as e-Discovery, audits, and corporate governance). Disk along with deduplication is ideal for storing data for weeks or even months but tape plays a critical role in meeting long term retention requirements and regulations because of its low total cost of ownership (TCO), low environmental impact, ability to encrypt, portability for disaster recovery, and durability. Information re-use Reliable, scalable, affordable, and accessible active tape based archives are a key requirement for industries such as media and entertainment, healthcare and video surveillance where increasing volumes of images, audio and video need to be protected, retained and distributed for re-use, repurposing, and monetization requirements. The benefits of archiving to tape Tape provides proven benefits and value when it comes to archiving your data. Save money With archive capacity set to grow rapidly, containing the costs of storing that archive becomes very important. In this respect, tape remains one of the lowest cost storage technologies available, both in terms of cost per TB and monthly operating costs. This is because tape media and energy costs are low, and because data stored to tape can last far longer than on disk. LTO Ultrium palm-sized tapes measure approximately 11.3 x 2.79 x 11.1 cm or 4 x 4 x 1 inches. As a result, they can be safely stacked and stored in a vault at regular ambient conditions, reducing the cost and amount of premium physical floor space required to house data in archive when compared to disk. The Clipper Group has released a report that compares the TCO of disk and tape for long term archiving. Using a nine-year TCO model, the study concludes that the average disk solution (including acquisition costs, maintenance, energy, and floor space) costs more than 26 times the average tape solution. The average disk solution was found to consume 105 times more energy than the average tape solution, costing four times more than the entire nine-year TCO for tape.3 Grow effortlessly Cost-effectively and efficiently scaling archive infrastructure to match exponential data growth is a top priority for many businesses. Tape libraries can deliver storage on demand to allow you to keep up with archive growth. Simply pay for the capacity you need today from a choice of base configurations. Then scale up—quickly, flexibly and without disruption—as your storage requirements grow. The HP StoreEver ESL G3 Tape Library enables you to store up to 75 PBs of compressed data4 on low cost tape media at speeds of up to 135 TB/hour,5 all in an energy-efficient, ultra-dense industry standard 19 rack footprint. The Clipper Group, Revisiting the Search for Long-Term Storage—A TCO Analysis of Tape and Disk (May 2013) 3 With LTO-6 at 2.5:1 compression 4, 5 5
  • 6. Business white paper | HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions Reduce risk The overriding customer defined metric for a successful archive is whether the data can be retrieved when needed. You need the peace of mind that your business data has been reliably archived, is protected from unauthorized access or online threats and is retrievable and accessible multiple years in the future. Tape provides the ability to: • Safeguard your data while it’s in the library, after export, and when it’s offsite with integrated security features such as native drive encryption and library-based key management • Implement offline data protection as the last line of defense vs. virus attacks, natural disasters, or data corruption • Proactively monitor and report on performance, utilization, and health of tape and archive infrastructure • Archive data on tape with a 30 year media shelf life • Avoid vendor lock-in with standards-based access to your archived content Save time Simplicity and ease-of-use is a top priority for organizations such as yours because you need to keep your focus on your business, not your technological infrastructure. With the pace of data growth continuing to accelerate, businesses require a fast and easy way to implement, expand, manage, and maintain their data protection and archive infrastructure. Tape provides the ability to: • Free up resources with an automated archive solution that reduces human intervention and minimizes human error • Simplify processes by consolidating archive to a single tape library • Access and share data on tape as easily as disk-based file systems The value of LTFS for archive solutions Tape’s unique blend of cost-effective, scalable, dependable, and removable storage has always delivered proven benefits when it comes to protecting and retaining your data. However, accessing and sharing files on tape had not always been as easy as disk, until the introduction of the LTFS. LTFS is a tape-based file system that is a true game changer when it comes to the usability and portability of tape. Let’s take a closer look at the value LTFS based solutions can provide your organization. 6
  • 7. Business white paper | HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions Figure 3. LTFS makes tape as easy to use and share as disk What is LTFS? LTFS makes LTO-5 and LTO-6 tape self-describing, file-based, and easy-to-use. It provides you with the ability to use standard file operations on tape media for accessing, managing, and sharing files with an interface that looks just like a hard disk. In addition, LTFS provides the ability to share data across platforms, as you would with a USB drive or memory stick. Simply load a tape into the drive, mount it into the file system, and it becomes visible as a disk (see figure 3). What are the key benefits of LTFS? LTFS makes LTO tape self-describing, file-based, and easy-to-use. • Easy to access and manage data on tape: LTFS is an extension of your operating system, so now tape is as easy and fast to access as a disk drive. View tape contents in your operating system browser directory tree and move files to and from tape via simple drag and drop. • Easy to share data on tape: LTFS makes tape data truly portable. Tape media written using LTFS is self-describing so that tape data access is independent of any hardware or software platforms. LTFS tapes can be shared easily across different operating systems and software. • Ideal for archive environments: LTFS is an open format for storing data on tape. It therefore minimizes software dependencies, maximizes recoverability, and facilitates the use of tape for long term archives. LTFS based archive solutions While LTFS provides an open standard for tape data storage and data interchange, it is not a complete archive solution in itself but more a component within a broader solution. The open format nature of LTFS means that tape is now much easier to integrate into existing products and workflows. As a result, LTFS is being deployed at accelerated rates in a growing ecosystem of archive solutions, including simple drag and drop applications, archive and retrieval software, file system solutions and “Tape as NAS” active archive solutions that combine the cost benefits of tape with the access times of NAS. LTFS archive solutions deliver particular value for industries such as media and entertainment, healthcare and video surveillance—where ever increasing volumes of images, audio and video need to be protected, retained and distributed. 7
  • 8. Business white paper | HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions Archive solutions that leverage HP StoreEver Tape While the recovery of backup data is based on a point-in-time from which a backup was completed, retrieval of archived data is content specific utilizing metadata created at the time of ingest. Depending on a given workflow or requirements for a specific business vertical, there are specialized software and appliance solutions that allow users to find archived information quickly and easily using this metadata. All of these use solutions that can leverage the cost benefits of HP StoreEver Tape Libraries as a storage target, either directly or indirectly. Media Asset Management and Digital Asset Management solutions Designed for rich content archiving, media asset management (MAM) and digital asset management (DAM) applications manage all the content and create appropriate metadata tags so millions of files can be tracked and recalled based on user search criteria. They may even create low-resolution proxies and store them locally so users can quickly scan images or video files looking for content. These applications may have unique features such as partial file restore, which allows a user to retrieve only a portion of a video file using the low resolution proxy to determine the in and out points instead of the entire video file which could be quite large. They typically do not natively perform any storage migration or have hierarchical storage management (HSM) capabilities built in. Instead, a separate tape backup software solution is used to provide a backup copy of the data for data protection or they integrate with an HSM solution. See figure 4 for a solution stack overview. Leading MAM/DAM applications include HP Autonomy Consolidated Archive, HP Autonomy MediaBin, Open Text Archive Server, and North Plains Telescope. There are a number of HP solution white papers available showing how these solutions work with the HP portfolio of disk storage products. As these applications do not interface directly with tape, it is not necessary to ensure direct compatibility of the end user’s application software with HP StoreEver Tape Libraries. Figure 4. Archive architecture with MAM software End User MAM/DAM Application S: Administrator Backup Application D: N: Operating System SAN DAS Disk NAS Disk SAN Robotics Tape Drive Disk StoreEver Tape Library 8 DAS StoreEver Tape Library Robotics Tape Drive
  • 9. Business white paper | HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions HSM solutions HSM solutions optimize data storage by providing data migration from high speed disk with higher costs to long term tape with lower costs. These solutions typically sit under other applications, like a MAM, and manage data movement, based on polices established by the user such as last time a file was accessed. They may also manage file access to ensure proper file sharing between the hosts that are connected to the HSM solution. Many of these HSM solutions have API interfaces that integrate with the upper level applications to provide special functions like partial file restore as previously mentioned. Figure 5 shows how a MAM solution (or any other solution) would interact with the HSM layer as though it was a local disk when in fact it’s a complete storage ecosystem of disk and tape. HP StoreEver Tape Libraries support a number of leading HSM storage solutions including Quantum StorNext and SGL FlashNet. SGL FlashNet supports LTFS as a storage tape format and can ingest or export LTFS formatted tapes directly into and out of the tape library while Quantum StorNext uses a proprietary tape format. Tape as NAS solutions There are a number of software and appliance solutions available today that provide a NAS-like connection to HP StoreEver Tape Libraries—enabling a simple, low cost, and reliable method of writing and retrieving archived data. Tape as NAS solutions virtualize HP StoreEver Tape Libraries and present the active archive as a network share using industry standard CIFS or NFS protocols. This allows users and applications to store, search, access and retrieve data on low cost HP StoreEver tape-based storage, via a disk cache, without administrator intervention and without the need to manage individual pieces of tape media. Figure 5. HSM architecture End User MAM/DAM Application F: File System with HSM SAN Transactional Disk SAN Nearline Disk SAN Robotics Tape Drive StoreEver Tape Library 9
  • 10. Business white paper | HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions The data is presented as standard sub-directories and files in the familiar operating system (Explorer) interface, although the data is actually stored sequentially on tape. This continuous visibility and accessibility is why Tape as NAS is superior to using traditional backup tools for archiving data. Tape as NAS also allows a large range of applications to read and write data to a HP StoreEver tape-based archive without directly supporting tape drive and tape library devices and protocols. These applications will access archived data from a file system, like they would from a disk-NAS solution. See figure 6 for an architectural overview. HP StoreEver Tape Libraries are qualified with both appliances (including Crossroads Strongbox and Cache-A) and software solutions (including QStar Archive Manager, XenData Archive Series, and FileTek StorHouse) that provide a NAS gateway to tape. All of these solutions provide the option to store data on tape in the LTFS format while some solutions also provide proprietary methods. Use cases for Tape as NAS active archive solutions including file, email, SharePoint, and database archiving as well as vertical market applications such as Healthcare Imaging, PACS, and DICOM and broadcast and video. Figure 6. Architecture with NAS gateway to tape End User Application (Any) S: D: T: N: Operating System SAN Disk 10 DAS Disk NAS NAS Disk Tape-as-NAS Gateway Server StoreEver Tape Library
  • 11. Business white paper | HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions Figure 7. HP StoreOpen for Automation presents tape media within the library as a collection of folders for simple data access and management Tape as mount point solutions HP StoreOpen for Automation is a simple software solution that presents an HP StoreEver Tape Library as single mount point on a single host. This solution presents the tape cartridges inside the library as a collection of folders that can be accessed just like a folder on a hard drive (i.e., drag and drop). Each folder represents a tape cartridge in the library (see figure 7). Robotic movement and tape cartridge loading is handled automatically depending on which data is being accessed. HP StoreOpen Standalone allows a tape drive to be mounted to a single host for simple drag-and-drop access to the data on the tape cartridge using common tools such as Windows® Explorer. An installation utility and GUI make using HP StoreEver Standalone tape drives easy to use. Both HP StoreOpen Automation and HP StoreOpen Standalone are great complements to more robust LTFS archive solutions for use in the field or for reading data from tapes that are exported from these solutions. HP StoreOpen Automation and HP StoreOpen Standalone can be downloaded for free from HP at 11
  • 12. Business white paper | HP StoreEver Tape Archive Solutions Conclusion The cost-effective, scalable, dependable, fast, removable and easy to use benefits of HP StoreEver Tape Storage make it the optimal storage target for archiving and active archiving applications. HP has qualified StoreEver Tape Libraries with the market-leading software and appliance providers for archive,6 giving you a wide array of options and choices to architect the best archive solution that meets your workflow and retrieval needs. Call to action HP StoreEver Tape Libraries work seamlessly in mixed-system archive and back up environments. For the latest list of operating systems, backup, and archive software/appliances (including LTFS support) that support HP StoreEver Tape Libraries, visit Learn more at As described, only the archive software and appliance products that interact directly with tape require testing by HP 6 Sign up for updates Share with colleagues Rate this document © Copyright 2013 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. The only warranties for HP products and services are set forth in the express warranty statements accompanying such products and services. Nothing herein should be construed as constituting an additional warranty. HP shall not be liable for technical or editorial errors or omissions contained herein. Windows is a U.S. registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation. 4AA4-8339ENW, September 2013