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Vol. 4 No. 10 December 2005

Looks like tape, spins like disk

In an interesting twist on the disk vs. tape saga, behold two new sightings on the storage landscape: the Ulysses drive from Imation and RDX, a new technology under development by ProStor Systems Inc., a Boulder, CO, startup. From the outside, both look like tape, but on the inside, each houses a 2.5-inch magnetic hard disk drive. Imation's Ulysses, which will be generally available in the first quarter of 2006, is for shops that want to add disk to their backup operations, but don't want to add another device into their environment, says John Gaylord, Imation's manager of global product strategy. Using RAID arrays as "an initial place for backups to go" can improve backup performance and restore, he says, "but it introduces additional complexity—it's another target; it's a different medium." Ulysses uses the LTO Ultrium form factor, and cartridges feature 100GB of capacity. The cartridges fit into a Ulysses tape drive emulator, or drive, which also fits seamlessly into existing tape automation enclosures. Not only does Ulysses ...

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