Archive for November, 2013

News: America Recycles Day celebrated on Nov. 15

America Recycles Day may sound like a new holiday but it was founded in 1997 and since then has cause to encourage people to recycle 365 days a year. Given that the United States is second only to China in most trash produced, it may be one of the most important days of the year.

According to the America Recycles Day website, 48,512 people signed up to pledge that they would recycle more going forward.

Sponsored by Keep America Beautiful, America Recycles Days is designated to educate citizens how to recycle in their communities and to renew their recycling efforts.

In a recent opinion piece Mary Beth Calan on Wickedlocal.com, the of Mary Beth Calnan/Belmont Recycling Coordinator of Belmont wrote about the holiday and what Massachusetts residents can do to boost their own recycling production.

It is especially important to follow recycling collection regulations now more than ever. China is enforcing strict standards for waste imports and prohibiting containers filled with contaminated recycling to be unloaded at their docks. These actions have been labeled ‘Operation Green Fence’ and are imposed to protect China’s environment, which has been polluted by the recycling industry. These stricter regulations are having an effect in the U.S. forcing higher standards at the recycling facilities. The contaminated recycling that routinely went to China now needs to be dealt with here.

Don’t focus on recycling more, focus on trashing less. A crazy statement coming from a recycling coordinator, but the goal is to have fewer items go in the trash. It would be better for a family of four to put out one trash barrel with one bin full of paper and one bin full of containers rather than three trash barrels with four bins of containers (mostly single serve plastic water bottles) and four bags of paper. Why? A family of four that has only one barrel of trash is doing a great job of reducing and reusing. They reduce by buying less stuff, buying in bulk, and looking for products that have less packaging. They reuse by donating unwanted clothing, books, and toys, using reusable mugs, water bottles and bags, and renting or sharing items that are used less frequently. Learning how to reduce and reuse results in having less stuff to throw away.

If you’re looking for a reliable asset disposal service, PCS of Massachusetts is ready and willing to help you recycle your electronics and destroy your dataPC Survivors of Massachusetts, L.L.C.  (R2) Certified,  86 Finnell Drive Unit 6,Weymouth, MA 02188 /Cell: 781-635-6281 /Office: 781-335-1220 / Fax: 781-335-1499 / www.pcsmass.com

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11 2013

Data Storage: The Resurgence of Tape

 

 

While you may drudge up memories of huge computer towers with the mention of tape-based hard drives, they aren’t just a remnant of the past. According to an article over at the Register, tape never died, it was just resting.  Author Bryan Betts says in some cases tape is doing better than ever, especially when used in combination with hard disk, either in a combined backup appliance with deduplication capabilities or as tiers within an archive.

Betts writes a big part of the change in the storage landscape was the huge advances in hard-disk technology and capacity, which for years were not accompanied by equivalent advances in tape technology.

But, with the advent of deduplication – technology looks for repeated patterns in data and stores or transmits each pattern only once, with subsequent copies replaced by a pointer – we are seeing lots more backup to disk.

So while tape has largely disappeared from roles where disk is better suited, such as fast or random access, handling multiple backup jobs in parallel, start-stop usage and deduplication, it has seen something of a comeback in areas where it has unique strengths, such as streaming speed, low-cost media and long-term storage.

According to Betts, the development of tape technology has accelerated since the turn of the millennium, so those strengths once again include high data densities, with the latest LTO-6 generation able to hold 6TB or more of compressed data per cartridge.

But, tape was not without its flaws. In the article, Betts talks to Steve Mackey, vice-president international at Spectra Logic, one of the very few old-school tape suppliers to have survived and prospered.

Mackey says while tape has its merits – it’s highly performant and scalable, it needs very low power consumption too – 1990s tape technology was prone to mishandling – and operators were unlikely to tell anyone if they dropped a cartridge. Plus it might be moved off-site or stored in a room that wasn’t temperature controlled.

But, he says, the reliability of tape has improved 700 per cent in the last 10 years or so. Mackey adds that a hard disk on its own can fail, so they put them in arrays and do backups.

“It is the same with tape. In big content archives you will always have data protection, probably including at least one duplicate. The most valuable data will have two copies in different locations, similar to disk mirroring,” he says.

As tape has come to be accepted as complementary to disk, the need to manage the two and make them play well together has grown.

“The problem is that data growth is faster than the growth of disk capacity,” Frank Reichart, senior director product marketing for storage at Fujitsu says.

All this in turn has brought opportunity and advantage for the developers and users of backup appliances, whether disk-to-disk or disk-to-disk to tape. These virtualize the physical target disk or tape systems and emulate several logical backup devices, typically multiple virtual tape libraries.

In summation, Betts says as well as offering the advantages of both disk deduplication and tape, backup appliances can also process data and build a backup without overloading either the backup or application servers.  He points to future developments, backup appliances that also act as cloud gateways, enabling storage professionals to add external storage as an additional option for backups and archives.

If you’re looking for a reliable asset disposal service, PCS of Massachusetts is ready and willing to help you recycle your electronics and destroy your data.  Give us a call at (781) 335-1220 or contact us online here.

 

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11 2013