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Uploaded on May 2, 2010
AsiaBSDCon 2010 paper session.
As the proliferation, reliance and importance of rich digital formats have increased over the years, so have demands on data storage capacity. However, backup technologies have not kept up with this trend. The traditional time stamp based towers of Hanoi backup methodology cannot handle the sheer volume of data and backup windows have been significantly reduced due to the 24 hour online economy. This methodology also backs up the same content repeatedly, even if the content has not changed. This results in a flood of data transfer that can overwhelm networks and other critical resources. Over the same period of time disk technology has progressed in leaps and bounds, both in performance and more importantly, in reliability. In comparison to disks, tape technologies are still comparatively slow and the media tends to deteriorate over time. Additionally, there are the future hardware compatibility issues of trying to match a degraded tape to a working tape drive, not to mention the physical issues such as offline labeling and physical storage. To work around these issues several new backup and archival paradigms have been developed however, these are mostly out of reach of the open source community due to cost and licensing issues.