SUMMARY: Artecon 8mm tape drive with data compression

From: Alfred Correira (unisql!
Date: Wed Feb 17 1993 - 16:39:39 CST

Original query:

> Artecon's claim, when I talked with them, is that this new tape drive of theirs
> (the one I am looing at is the DSUO-300B2-C) will yield 3x-4x compression on
> the ``typical'' (average, whatever) filesystem. A 15-20GB 8mm tape drive is
> about what I am looking for to replace the older Exabyte 8200 on our SPARC 2
> server (soon to be at SunOS 4.1.3) when we swap out its 1.2GB disks for 2.4GB
> disks. I was wondering if any of you out there actually have this drive and
> can respond to the following questions:
> - it works well for you with SunOS 4.1.?
> - it achieves an average compression of ?x
> - it works well with standard data grade 8mm tapes
> (few errors encountered)
> - plus any caveats or glowing comments you care to share.
> If you're using someone else's (equivalent) drive and would care to share
> similar experiences for _that_ drive, I am, as H. Ross would say, all ears :-)

Summary of responses:

A number of respondents wanted a summary (so here it is).

Based on the responses, I would say that this still is a fairly new technology
area and that you should proceed with deliberation, based on your circumstances

Highlights from the responses:

> From: (Drew Montag)
> We just got an 8500c from Unison, and I'm still testing it out. I've been in
> direct contact with Exabyte in order to get our SPARCstation 2 running SunOS
> 4.1.2 to recognize it, sort of. I can't get it recognized as an 8500c, but I
> can get it recognized as an 8500. I haven't been able to verify yet if it
> will really hold more than 5 gigs.
> Incidentally, Exabyte says to expect a compression ratio of 1.7 to 2.0 for
> "typical" filesystems.


> From: (Paulo Licio de Geus) > > Expect at most 2x compression from a typical mix of executables, > programs and text.


> From: (Deborah Ferry) > > Apunix Computer Services sells Exabyte 8500c compression tape drives bundled > with our custom device driver software and Network backup Daemon Package. > > -The system works well for all Sun systems running Sun OS 4.1.x > -The Exabyte 8500c drive is a new drive from Exabyte. They claim to get 12GB > of data on each 112m tape. The average compression ratio is 1.8-2.0 to 1. > Apunix also sell another flavor of an Exabyte 8500 with compression which > includes an LCD display in front. > -Standard data grade tapes work well with the tape drive. We sell the Exabyte > brand of data certified tapes. > -Apunix's custom device driver for the Exabyte gives you several features > that you don't get with the standard driver under Sun OS. For example, our > driver gives you complete exabyte error code diagnostics, reports amount of > tape remaining, allows for long or short filemarks, fixed or variable length > file support. In addition, we prodive our Network Backup Daemon program > which provides unattended backup for all BSD Unix machines.


> From: nims@Andersen.COM (Christopher D. Nims) > > We're currently using a Contemporary Cybernetics CY8200 tape drive which is > a 2.3Gig 8mm drive with their compression board. We average about 8Gig > during our nightly backups. We've been very happy that we're > placing an order for their 5gig drive with compression.

If anyone else has experience with this drive, I'd like to hear about it; it's more expensive than the Artecon, but it does represent a stable technology with what appears to be a good track record ...

My thanks to the respondents.

-- alfred Internet: unisql! UUCP:!unisql!alfred

The trouble with the rat-race is that even if you win, you're still a rat. -- Lily Tomlin

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2 : Fri Sep 28 2001 - 23:07:29 CDT