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Tape Drive

This is a removable storage device mainly used for backing up data. It is similar to a Zip Drive, but instead of Zip disks, it uses small tapes. The drive acts like a tape recorder, reading data from the computer and writing it onto the tape. Since tape drives have to scan through lots of tape to read small amounts of scattered data, they are not practical for most storage purposes. That is why they are used almost exclusively for data backup. The benefit of tape drives is that they typically have large capacities for storing data, for a lower cost than hard drives similar in size. Also, multiple tapes can be used to make incremental backups (daily, weekly, monthly, etc.), which is much cheaper than using multiple hard drives.

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Category: Hardware Terms