Virtual tape libraries vs. disk-to-disk backup in small business storage environments

Disk-based backup is popular in small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) for data backup and recovery. SMBs have several disk options to choose from for their data backup environment such as virtual tape libraries (VTLs) and disk-to-disk (D2D) backup.

Both virtual tape libraries and disk-to-disk backups are frequently packaged together with data deduplication. The difference between the two disk-based backup technologies is that a VTL has additional technologies in it to emulate the physical actions of tape, such as tape drives or tape media. Whereas a disk-to-disk backup platform acts as a network-attached storage (NAS) device that can be mounted with a storage of backups. Both will typically attach to a backup media server and be managed by that media server.

But what's the more popular disk-based backup option for small business storage environments, virtual tape libraries or disk-to-disk backup? What are the pros and cons of each? And how does data deduplication differ between VTLs and disk-to-disk backups?

Jeff Boles, senior analyst of validation services at the Taneja Group, answers these questions in the podcast below.

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This was first published in April 2010

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