SUMMARY: Half-inch tape drives

Date: Mon Jan 13 1992 - 17:10:56 CST


> I need to make a decision fairly quickly about which half-inch tape
> drive I should buy for a Sun 4/470 (shortly to be upgraded to a
> 4/670), and would be very grateful for any comments you might have
> about the reliability and usability of the following three models:
> Cipher Series M995
> Fujitsu M2444
> Hewlett Packard HP 88780B
> I've been told that the tape drive that Sun sells is actually the
> above HP one, and I'd also be interested in knowing if this is true.


All responders who had either HP or Fujitsu tape drives liked them and
had had no problems with them.

Some people who had Cipher drives had had problems with them.

The Sun half-inch tape drive is the HP one above.

One person with experience of both the HP drive and others not listed
above thought that the HP drive was mechanically the kindest of them
all to tape during loading.

One person with experience of both the Fujitsu and HP drives preferred
the former ("less switches and junk").

The HP drive may be a more convenient shape (low and wide) for putting
in a standard rack than the Fujitsu (tall and narrow).

In Britain the price of the HP drive from Sun is about twice that of
the same drive from a dealer, and the price of a Fujitsu is slightly
lower than the latter. I've decided to buy the Fujitsu M2444.


Many thanks to the following for their responses:

Benjamin Clardy <>
antoine @
Lon Jones <>
"Edwards, D N" <>
era @
Dan Butzer <>
Bruce Kall <>
mike @
Steve Simmons <>
mlg @
clive @
Kevin Sheehan {Consulting Poster Child} <>

Ian Doak, Computing Laboratory, Newcastle University, NE1 7RU, England

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