Product: Iomega Rev Autoloader 1000 Price: $22,000 Pros: Eight major storage software vendors in the Windows, Unix and Linux communities support the Rev drive Cons: With so much investment made by companies over the years, tape-based storage will not disappear soon Overworked information technology systems administrators deserve to get some cool new gear this Christmas. Their corporate chieftains should consider a modest bump in the IT budget to make backup and disaster recovery chores easier for techies. They might also consider data storage specialist Iomega's new Rev Autoloader 1000. This product was designed to replace the Small Computer System Interface-standard tape autoloaders and other backup devices used by small and medium-sized businesses in their networks. It also reinvents the autoloader setup by using the Rev drive, a removable hard disk-drive system engineered to last for more than 30 years, and inexpensive 35-gigabyte Rev discs as the core backup technology. A Rev-based autoloader accomplishes two highly desirable goals in one stroke: it eliminates the frustrations associated with tape and it reduces the backup window for more efficient management of the network. Iomega claims its Rev drive can reduce the time it takes to complete backup tasks by more than 80 per cent compared with tape formats such as DDS-4 - based on head-to-head tests. Rev technology also transfers data at rates of up to 25 megabits per second to outperform more expensive DDS-4, DAT-72, VXA, AIT-1, and DLT VS80 products. With Rev discs, IT administrators can also eliminate the other frustrations of using tape storage. These include tape head cleaning, tape re-tensioning and worn tape replacement. Because the Rev drive does not require a cleaning disc, all 10 slots in the Rev Autoloader 1000 can be used for storage. Iomega also claims that Rev discs have much higher rewriteability - estimated to be more than a million rewrites per disc - for cost savings against tape, when factoring in the replacement cost of worn-out tapes.