Quantum Introduces Disk-Based Backup

Improved backup performance.

In the good old days it was common to take a server offline to back up data, but with the emergence of the 24-hour economy, even slight degradations in performance during backups are unacceptable. To help, Quantum Corp. introduced a new product in March designed to improve backup performance.

"It's a very dense disk system," says Michael Brown, chairman and CEO of Quantum. The new DX30 disk-based backup product holds 3TB in a 2U space. 30 120GB IDE drives are crammed into the DX30 2U enclosure. While using all of that storage in a server would result in a quick meltdown, heat isn't a factor in this dense storage array. "We don't have to have all the disks spinning at the same time," Brown says.

The unit features two Fibre Channel HBAs and Gigabit Ethernet adapters to connect to servers and storage devices. The disk drives are mounted in a redundant RAID array, and management software allows it to appear as a tape unit to disaster recovery software.

Traditionally, hard drives have been too expensive to use as for backup, particularly in comparison to tape. But DX30 uses cheap IDE hard drives rather than expensive SCSI drives. Although their performance isn't good enough for most enterprise purposes, they compare favorably to tape in both performance and price.