A Modern genomics lab typically produces about 10TB of data per day. And this number is growing on an exponential curve as the technology and methods become more refined.
Can you imagine being part of the IT support staff at one of these facilities? You’d have to manage tens of thousands of tapes. If a user needed a specific record, the act of manually locating the right tape and loading it could take hours… or even days. And then you have to deal with the headaches of backup and archiving.
Without tape storage automation, many organizations such as governments, Internet companies and television stations would grind to a halt. There’s simply no convenient way to handle this volume of data by hand.
Imagine a giant box about the size of a refrigerator, able to hold hundreds of tapes. And inside of the machine, a robotic arm is able to locate and load the proper tapes within seconds. Not only is this faster than a human, but it also takes up less space in the server room.
These systems are also capable of copying tapes for backups, and implementing archiving policies to make room for more data.
For organizations struggling to contain very rapid data growth, additional silos can also be added to the main unite. This extends their storage capacity to handle several petabytes, stored across tens of thousands of physical tape.
Some systems are even equipped to handle boxes of tapes for bulk processing. This dramatically speeds up the maintenance process, and keeps archival data well-organized for off-site storage.
Automated tape libraries re one of the most important innovations in storage technology. Without such automates systems, there would be no cost-effective way to handle massive volumes of business data.