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Pretentious Pontifications: Tape drives

R. Collins Farquhar IV, Scotsman, and aristocrat. To all whom it may concern. Greeting: One of my associates contacted me today about tape backup units, specifically, a review on Tom’s Hardware Guide. As usual, Tom’s Hardware substantially misses the mark.
I was extraordinarily disappointed that Tom’s Hardware made no mention whatsoever about Intel tape drives. I had my manservant call one of my contacts at Intel for the purposes of having them send me a tape drive, but my contact said that Intel does not make tape drives. Since Intel is one of a very small number of reputable hardware manufacturers, this is the kind of important information that needs to be in a review like this.

I had my manservant ask my contact at Intel which tape drive he would recommend. He recommended the HP SDLT320. Since Intel has a very close relationship with HP, I decided that an HP tape drive might be the next best thing. The Intel contact mentioned–as did the THG review–that the Tandberg SDLT320 is an identical unit. Since I have never heard of Tandberg, I did not even consider it. Any operation I have never heard of is obviously a fly-by-night. Accepting a Tandberg when Intel recommends an HP is akin to accepting a mere Bentley when you sought a real Rolls. Whereas Jacques Pierre Cousteau Bouillabaise Nouveau Riche Croissant de Raunche de la Stenche will settle for a Bentley, I am never willing to settle for a knockoff, even when the alleged difference is only in the front plate or grille.

I was also extraordinarily disappointed that Tom’s Hardware did not test the drives with Microsoft software. Microsoft, as even a tryo or ingenue knows, makes simply the finest software in the world. I would go so far as to call Microsoft the Rolls-Royce of software. So my manservant contacted Microsoft to ask for a copy of their top-flight tape backup software. The Microsoft representative said that Microsoft’s offering came bundled with its server software and is licensed by Veritas. If I wanted something better, I should talk to Veritas. Again, doing so would be to settle for something less than a Rolls. Even though a Rolls from the 1960s used a General Motors transmission, I would never settle for a 1968 Cadillac when what I really want is a 1968 Rolls. I have never heard of Veritas either, so I evaluated Microsoft’s offering and found it to be first-class and worthy of performing the backup needs of any enterprise. That Microsoft would be so generous as to bundle such a grandee application with its server software makes it all the more sweet for those whose means are less aristocratic than my own.

I was pleased when I connected the HP SDLT320 to my main workstation (a prototype 4 GHz Pentium 4 I got from Intel) that my Quake 3 framerates rose to 430 FPS. A serious gamer will want this.

Next, I tried backing up my Quake III CD to the HP SDLT320. I was amazed when the backup took a mere two minutes. I do not know whether to attribute these results to the influence of Intel engineers on HP, or to Microsoft’s sterling software. In all likelihood, it is a combination of both.

These tests prove once again the adage that corporations sufficiently large truly can do no wrong.

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