[TUHS] Irwin 285

Sergey Lapin slapinid at gmail.com
Thu Jan 21 22:07:07 AEST 2010

On Thu, Jan 21, 2010 at 2:32 PM, Wilko Bulte <wb at freebie.xs4all.nl> wrote:
> Quoting Jochen Kunz, who wrote on Thu, Jan 21, 2010 at 12:19:17PM +0100 ..
>> On Thu, 21 Jan 2010 13:26:39 +0300
>> Sergey Lapin <slapinid at gmail.com> wrote:
>> > And I've got a strange device I've seen nowhere else - floppy-attached
>> > tape drive, labelled Irwin, model 285.
>> [...]
>> > Also - how wide these devices were used? I've never met one before
>> > while I can't say I have little IT experience.
>> Floppy tapes where quite common consumer grade (i.e. cheap crap) backup
>> drives in the early 90'is. They just mimic a floppy drive to the
>> controler. But you need special software to actually use the drive.
>> They don't work like a big floppy.
>> Don't waste your time with this crap. Floppy streamers are sslllooowww
>> and unreliable. They are limited to the data rate of a floppy drive,
>> IIRC 500 kBit/s max. and the tapes need to be formated before use. They
>> have no "read after write" verify. So you need an extra verify run
>> after the backup was written. I.e. you need to run the whole tape three
>> times through the drive. This can take up to several hours.
>> The only reason to resurrect one of these drives is to read old tapes
>> with important data that would be lost otherwise.
> Exactly.  Even at the best of times this was basically junk, these
> days it is probably worse than junk.  "SperrmÃŒll" ;-)

Ah, that's so bad, so I will really need to buy some vintage SCSI tape drive
to fullfill my backup needs. I see the reason why these devices are
nowhere to be found.

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