The Question for Magnetic Storage Devices: Disk vs Tape

Monday, 5 March, 2012

For all those who aren’t IT professionals or in someway affiliated with a large enterprise and their methods of data preservation, the debate for disk versus tape seemed to be solved years ago.  However, there is a subtlety in the spelling of this particular argument that makes all the difference.  Although, if after you read the phrase, disk versus tape, you thought, “DVDs laid tapes to rest years ago, besides who even has a VHS player that still works?” you’re not completely wrong even if this is a different debate than intended.  For the common user, DVDs solved a number of issues including reliability, performance, and ease of use; not to mention how much time you save finding your favorite scene via a chapter selection and not by manually forwarding or rewinding a tape.  But the original argument, and our intended topic, addresses magnetic tape data storage and disk drives (digital magnetic storage devices and not optical discs like DVDs) both used by IT professionals and large or small companies as data storage mediums.