Posted on 2009-04-24
We (me and my work colleagues) looking for a solution.
We currently have around 600GB of "data" - (faxes, ultrasonic scans, shearography scans, invoices, credit notes, etc.). Well over 3 million files.
The data covers only a few years and we expect to have at least 200GB a year for the current formats.
We have been manually archiving to DVD, but this is a very cumbersome way of working as we need to constantly check when a backup is required and to not backup previously restored files.
The capacity is supplied by a 4TB SAN drive (which also contains our VMs for our servers as well as the SQL server databases).
We have found that whilst we are growing at least 200GB a year, we can see that for upto 1 month after creation a file has a high frequency of use. After about 6 months it has a very low level of use.
For files older than 1 year, it is a handful of files which are used and for a short amount of time.
In our minds we would like a system to be able to store the files on some sort of permanent disk (DVD though Blue-Ray is the newbie here and has a much higher capacity).
The system would show that the file is available (even though it now exists on a DVD and not the hard disk). If the file content is required, it is retrieved from the DVD automatically.
These files are written to frequently within the first month and hardly ever after 6 months.
Versioning of the files would be useful too. A file is restored, amended and eventually placed onto an archive. If, at some stage later, another restore is required, then the amended file would be the default to be restored, but the possibility to get to the original file would be useful.
I think increasing the capacity is a non starter as we are going to be introducing new formats into this setup and we think that this could increase our yearly capacity to around 350GB.
What systems do you know about and have used? I'm looking for any sort of recommendation. Please don't give me links to HP/IBM/etc. We have some idea of what is available, but are looking for experience/recommendations.