A couple of posts ago I wrote about the need for economies of scale in backup, and lamented (or ranted, to put it bluntly) about the lack of such economies in currently available backup solutions.
Before I go further, let me be clear: the requirement, in my opinion, is for solutions that offer genuine economies of scale. That is, declining marginal costs. This is very different than reducing costs. I think we have done OK as an industry at reducing costs.
If you look at the cost of backup with just tape, and compare that to the cost of backup with source or target deduplication, I don't think there is any doubt at all that you can reduce the cost of backup by employing deduplication--either to augment or complement tape, or to move to a tapeless environment. Your ability to reduce costs is even better if you archive too--every MB that you archive is a MB you don't have to back up.
So, having said all that, I found it interesting that Tony Pearson over at IBM took my post not as an opportunity to discuss backup, recovery and archiving solutions and cost reduction, but to claim that "IBM has Scalable Backup Solutions."
(But so what? And way to miss the point entirely!)