Silicon Angle was amongst the sites reporting last week’s acquisition of Optical Archive Inc… by Sony. The company built a storage system based upon Blu-ray disks, and Sony clearly sees an opportunity to extend the life and value of the blu-ray format it created.
According to [Optical Archive founder Frank] Frankovsky, Blu-ray offers up to 50 percent savings compared with hard disk storage. In addition, Blu-ray is more energy efficient, using 80 percent less power than regular cold storage racks because the cabinet only uses energy while writing data during the initial burn.
Blu-ray also offers extreme longevity, with each disc being certified to retain data for at least fifty years, and it’s durable too, because the technology works fine in most environments.
Cost and power consumption are only a small part of the picture here. Clearly, an archival backup solution has to be cheap and simple enough to even consider using… but once selected, the over-riding criterion is durability. There is no point in an archive solution – no matter how cheap – that doesn’t retain the data you need it to…
It’s notable, too, that the figures Silicon Angle reports Frankovsky citing are for hard disk storage; a lot of real cold archiving is still done to (cheaper, slower) magnetic tape.