Showing posts from August, 2006

Cooperative backup and archiving

After testing my company's shiny, new 100 Mbps internet service from Cogent, I was struck with an idea. Plenty of companies out there offer internet-based backup service, but most of these are priced per-gigabyte-per-month and are prohibitively expensive. Especially when you consider that our full backup sets are typically 600 GB in compressed form, and we of course want to store daily incrementals for several months.

My idea: find another Cogent subscriber, and enter into a mutual backup agreement. That is, we buy a storage server to sit on their site, and they buy one to sit on ours. We can then exchange backup traffic, eliminating the need to shuffle tapes and send them off-site. Many large enterprises already do this with SAN hardware replication; however this would be a budget "roll your own" solution.

There exist several open-source distributed storage systems that might help, however, none seem ready for prime-time yet. I feel quite a lot could be accomplished with …