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Your Data Archiving Methods Cheat Sheet

Your Data Archiving Methods Cheat Sheet

Data Archiving is a perfect solution for any organization that is required to store data for an extended or unlimited amount of time. It is also ideal for companies with information compliance requirements. This data needs to be protected against cybersecurity risks, natural disasters, and user error.

Tape and Disk Data Archiving

Despite its long tenure, tape is still relevant for some use cases, and remains widely utilized as a method for backup and archiving processes at many Fortune 500 companies today.

Tape is an incredibly simple storage media, where the reading mechanism is kept completely separate from the primary storage medium. This reduces the chance of breakage over time, making it an excellent option for long-term backup and archival storage.

Backup tapes also have the ability for “Write Once, Read Many” (WORM) locking, which helps to prevent data tampering, which is a critical requirement for storing and accessing sensitive information preserved for legal or compliance reasons. Tape is also used as a security barrier to provide physical storage which is “air-gapped” from production systems.

However, hard drives are much faster than tape and more suitable to situations where fast disaster recovery is necessary. Unlike tape, they are mechanically complex and have a higher risk of breakage over time.

Because of these trade-offs between speed and long-term reliability, many companies will use tape for off-site long-term data storage, and hard drives for local backups or at secondary failover facilities where rapid recovery is required.

Cloud Data Archiving

While tape has been utilized for archival storage for many years, this method poses several challenges:

  • Over time, the tape will physically degrade, leading to the potential risk of data loss.
  • Recovering data is difficult because you have to sort through a large collection of tapes to find what you’re looking for.
  • Tape archives require expensive hardware and software. Tape archives are labor-intensive.

Cloud archiving e