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How to store, serve, and back up 100 TB of PDF files?

Posted on 2015-02-04
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Last Modified: 2015-02-06
My organization currently stores, serves, and backs up about 4 TB of data. Now, out of necessity, we are converting all of our microfilm to PDF files. A vendor is doing that part, and they estimate that once converted, there will be 100TB of PDF files. I don't even know where to begin with managing that much data.

The backup medium should have a long shelf life. Otherwise, we'll be constantly re-backing up the data as the expected shelf life of the media approaches.
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Question by:R. Toby Richards
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Expert Comment

by:bbao
ID: 40590013
i think you need a complete Content Management System (CMS) to manage all digitalised data, not only because of its huge amount of data, but also for a proper, efficient way to access, back up and update the historic data.

once a right CMS is selected, you may design its storage back-end accordingly.
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Author Comment

by:R. Toby Richards
ID: 40590031
The CMS is being provided by the vendor.
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Expert Comment

by:bbao
ID: 40590055
you mean the storage vendor or provider?
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Author Comment

by:R. Toby Richards
ID: 40590067
The vendor who is scanning the microfiche is providing a software content management system, but no hardware or backup solution.
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Expert Comment

by:Gerald Connolly
ID: 40592412
An obvious starting point is LTO tape, it's got easy portability, robust and longevity
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Author Comment

by:R. Toby Richards
ID: 40592508
Since PDF's are already compressed that would require about 40 tapes, which doesn't seem viable.
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Expert Comment

by:bbao
ID: 40592919
> The vendor who is scanning themicrofiche is providing a software content management system

did they provide you the hardware spec or requirements of the storage which is compatible to their software? e.g. RAID, NAS, SAN, or specific tape systems?
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Expert Comment

by:andyalder
ID: 40593935
HP E7W30A plus Smart Array P822 would do for about 120TB usable with 35 * 4TB nearline 7.2K SAS (about $40k), but as Gerald Connolly says you still need an LTO library to back it up onto and a midrange server to act as fileserver.
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Accepted Solution

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Gerald Connolly earned 500 total points
ID: 40594886
100TB is a lot of data, and yes it might be 40+ tapes, but you can put them on the shelf and if they are treated properly you will still be able to read them in 10+ years time (compatible hardware permitting). They are designed for this.

You can't do that with disk they just are not designed to sit on the shelf and preserve the data, and you would be looking at a similar number of disks anyway.
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