SureStore offers all-in-one DLT backup solutionThe latest addition to Hewlett-Packard's (HP) SureStore line of storage products, the HP SureStore DLT Library, Model 4115e, is sure to be a winner for those with enterprise backup needs. $21,553 (ex tax) buys an out-of-the-box solution that includes a SCSI adapter, blank tapes, barcode labels, and trial versions of major backup software.
The SureStore DLT Library is a well-engineered product that can be set up effortlessly. A drawback is its lack of support for Unix - critical at department and enterprise levels.
The SureStore DLT Library is literally an all-in-one Windows NT Server or NetWare backup solution. It includes an Adaptec PCI SCSI controller, a cable, five blank tapes, a cleaning tape, three tape magazines, a barcode reader, a label kit, mounting hardware for a stand-alone or 19in rack-mount configuration, and even a Stanley screwdriver to put it all together. I liked the fact that the 45kg library ships with removable installation handles for easy setup.
Setup steps are cleary documented, but it would be nice if there were a document that tied the pieces together. With products from Adaptec, HP, and three software vendors included, getting through the process smoothly requires some effort.
A major feature is the barcode reader for identifying tapes. This worked as soon as I inserted the labelled tapes. Cheyenne Software's ArcServe software immediately identified the tapes by their labels after it was set up with the loader option.
Unlike many Rube Goldberg-like cartridge loaders, the SureStore DLT Library is a solidly constructed, low-maintenance unit. The DLT tapes snapped firmly into the futuristic purple magazines, which slide easily into the front panel.
The DLT format is gaining a reputation as a highly reliable format for storing data. The SureStore DLT Library holds 15 HP DLT tape IV data cartridges, which each hold 20Gb of uncompressed data and 40Gb of compressed data - providing a capacity of 300Gb of uncompressed or 600Gb of compressed data. That's enough to back up large servers and databases, or provide several days of unattended backups for less data.
Bundled with the library are trial versions of NetWare and NT backup software from Seagate Technologies and Cheyenne Software, and NT backup software from Legato Systems - a nice bonus because the user can use existing software if it supports the DLT Library or choose one of the included packages and order the full version.
With all of the included goodies, HP's reputation for excellence and the solid DLT format, the SureStore DLT Library is a great choice for enterprise backup needs. The lack of Unix support is a downside, but a Unix version is said to be in the works. If you want a solid, hands-off approach to backups, then take a look at the SureStore DLT Library.
The Bottom Line -- SureStore DLT LibraryThe SureStore DLT Library offers 600Gb of storage using the fast, reliable DLT format. The unit is easy to set up and includes everything you need to get started.
Pros: User-friendly setup; includes three different backup software trial versions; easy-to-use hardware; includes SCSI adapter.
Cons: Lack of Unix support; bulky (but so are all changers); should include software instructions for getting startedPrice: $21,553 ex tax.
Shipping: Four weeks from placement of order.
Platforms: Windows NT 3.51 and 4.0, NetWare 4.1.
Tel 13 1347