Cloud Storage Versus Physical Storage Costs
Since the 1960’s, the only viable option for storing tapes was in an offsite vault. While this gave you some protection, it was never more than an air-conditioned room with maybe a fire suppression system and swipe card access. Over the last decade, the public cloud has become ubiquitous, scalable and has seen significant price decreases, while at the same time offsite tape storage costs have been on the increase. Not only that, but one of the major offsite storage providers has both consumed a large number of its rivals and has had five massive warehouse fires in its facilities, being responsible for the loss of millions of tapes and boxes. Offsite storage really is both a false sense of security and economy.
Today, on a cost per GB basis, there is no cheaper alternative to online replicated storage than the public cloud. Not only is it cheaper than all of its rivals, it also comes coupled with incredible tool sets and flexibility, allowing for never seen before scalability, processing power and on demand application of AI and Big Data tools without having to move your data to the tools. Historically, data needed to be moved to the tool sets but now the public cloud allows you to create a data repository, where all data is available all of the time to all tools sets.
In general, private cloud providers offer limited access, finite storage areas, a lack of redundancy and far higher costs. Add that to the far higher risk to your data from security threats and disaster, and it’s obvious why the public cloud is winning the race. Offsite tape storage pays no attention to the volume of data you store, so legacy tapes (greater than 7 years old) tend to be more cost-effective in the cloud than on a shelf in an air-conditioned room, where they are inaccessible and your hardware to read them is no longer supported.
Looking at storage costs of physical tape storage versus cloud-based storage however does not give an accurate view of Tape Ark’s inherent value. Organisations using the old physical tape storage model still face the financial burden of maintaining legacy tape drives, legacy environments and the staff with the legacy knowledge to access their data. With Tape Ark’s restore-as-a-service model, customers can relinquish their legacy systems and simply order their legacy data via their secure Tape Ark portal and receive the files, folders or entire tapes through a secure download or FTP. No more couriers, cables and crusty old equipment causing frustration and delays. You expect Netflix-style service at home, so why not expect that for your enterprise backups also?