What is the Remote Storage System (RSS)?

A. The remote storage system is new to Windows 2000 and addresses the problem of limited disk space.

Prices of hard disks has fallen recently however tape is still much cheaper at around $20 for 8GB than hard drive space but is obviously slower access. Windows 2000 introduces a hierarchical storage management facility (from Seagate Software) that allows an NTFS 5 volume to be expanded by moving less used files to tape while leaving a placeholder on the disk so users can still "see" the file. When the user tries to access one of these files that has been moved to tape it is restored from the tape and opened in a read-only mode. The process is almost invisible to the user, all the user sees is a small dialog informing them the file is being restored from tape.

Remote Storage is also known as Hierarchical Storage Management (or HSM) as it allows two tiers of data storage, the first being the hard disk, the second the data moved to tape.

The files original size will still be displayed however it will not be used when free space is calculated on the disk.

Programs need to be remote storage aware, especially backup and anti-virus software or it may attempt to fetch files from remote storage causing long delays and also you may WANT files to be fetched from remote storage for full backups. The NTBACKUP software package supplied with Windows 2000 has full support for remote storage and can also backup files stored on remote storage if you require. Be especially careful of FindFast supplied with Office 97 and disable it!

You must have local Administrator rights to configure Remote Storage and currently as off Windows 2000 first release have a 4mm/8mm dat or DLT drive. The volumes must also be NTFS 5.0. In the future media such as ZIP or JAZ may be supported but not at present. Also the dat/DLT drive should be on the HCL however I purchased a HP DAT8i for the test which is not on HCL but had no problems. I'm not encouraging you to use hardware not on the Windows 2000 HCL, I'm just saying if its a standard dat/DLT type it will probably be OK and worth a try. Non-dat/DLT media will NOT work, I tried a Travan drive which it refused to use.


TAGS: Windows 8
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