This is the coment I made on that article:
Aside from the impact NAND SSDs are starting to have and will increasingly have in the hard drive space, one big area people continually seem unable to focus on, nor even recognise, is that they will be a disruptive technology when it comes to the backup and archive market which is currently dominated by tape drives and media.Then I got out of bed, put the kettle on for my first cuppa and posted this blog post. :)
People keep claiming that hard drive backups will replace tape backups and they've made nothing more than a dint in the backup market and barely a scratch in the archive market. Sure, Microsoft may have dropped tape support in their Windows Server 2008 operating system's native backup application, but pretty much anyone who uses tape drives for backup uses both a third party tape driver and third party backup application anyway. This change by Microsoft will have very little impact on the devices used for backups in the IT industry.
What *will* make an impact, in my opinion, is NAND SSD technology.
HDDs are too delicate to be taken seriously as a backup and archival technology in the enterprise arena. Sure, they are a cheap and viable option in the SMB market, but tape still has enough advantages down here to be a valid contender. However Flash will become a serious contender as capacities increase. One of the reasons was touched on in your article - IOPS. As the backup window decreases, the slow (relative) speed of tapes means that they can't be used directly for backups and an initial backup is made to HDD on either that server itself (on an additional spindle set) or to another dedicated backup server, then this is taken to tape. All of this adds cost and another layer of complexity which is, quite effectively, more cost.
When SSD capacity and cost starts coming into competition with tape drives (and this will happen before SSDs compete with HDDs due to the expense of tape drive systems), we'll find enterprises starting to look seriously at SSD as a cost effective replacement for tape for both backup and archival purposes.
Another reason for SSD being extremely useful for backups is the speed of restore which will vary from significantly faster to a few orders of magnitude faster.
So, both technically and economically, SSDs will play an increasingly important role as not only primary storage, but also as backup and archival storage in place of the Tape.
The Outspoken Wookie
(Trying to remember that he's on holidays. As in *NOT WORK*. Holidays. He has 10-15 minutes work to do today and that's it, so why is he thinking about this stuff this early in the morning?)