HP has gone head-to-head with Dell with the launch of a low-priced, disk-based backup and recovery system for small and medium sized businesses.
The HP StorageWorks D2D Backup System will automatically save the data from up to four servers, with total capacity of either 750G bytes or 1.5T bytes. Users can restore lost files within minutes, compared to several hours for a tape-based system, HP said.
Most users say that tape-based systems are the most cost-effective method of backing up data, but as new accounting laws make greater demands of storage systems, that could soon change, said Adam Thew, marketing director for HP's StorageWorks division.
Compared to connecting a direct-attached tape storage device to every server in a business, HP's new disk-to-disk product can reduce the cost of ownership and chance of human error, Thew said.
The D2D system is designed for small business owners with little IT management experience, offering a simple setup wizard interface, Web-based monitoring, and standard Ethernet cables with iSCSI (Internet Small Computer Systems Interface).
Still, HP says tape-based storage is important for a complete backup system. "D2D will not replace tapes entirely. We do recommend that customers keep a single tape-based system offsite for disaster recovery," Thew said.
Dell and its partner EMC launched a similar backup system on 20 February, offering the disk-based CX3-10 SAN (storage area network) array for small and medium businesses. Like HP, Dell says its system works best in concert with tape-based storage, and also launched two new products in its tape library line, the PowerVault TL2000 and PowerVault TL4000.
Dell's systems are intended for buyers with larger storage needs and hardware budgets than HP's, with the CX3-10 starting at US$22,000 (£11,200) and the PowerVault libraries starting at $9,300 (£4740).
HP sells the D2D110 model with 750G bytes useable storage capacity for $1,999, (£1,000) and the D2D120 model with 1.5T bytes for $2,999 (£1,500). HP charges $1,000 (£500) more to bundle its Data Protector Express software with the products.