Your motives are noble, good job. For a small business, this is ridiculous! If this is the only option your IT service provider suggested, it's time to find a vendor that is more in touch with your business. Are you one of their smaller clients? It's as close to ultimate as you can get for small businesses. The trick to managing any sort of tape or USB disk backup is to designate the rotation of the media to a reliable employee. They then put that event in their calendar, and optionally many backup programs can send a reminder email (or a solution like this can be scripted). After reading this, I think you're going about the problem the wrong way. You've got two major issues: an IT provider who isn't doing their job, and an old server + network that is beginning to fail (tape drive issues). While it's not clear if your Dad is using the Small Business Server edition of Windows Server 2003, the company is a perfect candidate for SBS 2008. It sounds like the server is getting quite old and should be replaced due to reliability issues; this would be the perfect opportunity to move to new hardware and newer, more robust platform. SBS 2008 comes with Exchange for your email, and SharePoint for collaboration (your Dad's company may not be using this yet!). There is a supported migration path from Microsoft, and it works very well - I've migrated a couple of clients who were in a similar situation to your Dad's business in the last couple of weeks. SBS 2008 has a much improved backup utility which is designed for USB disks. In fact, it supports nothing but. It is very easy to use, but more importantly, monitor. I highly recommend you find a new IT support company to handle a migration to the new platform and manage it. *Disclaimer: I work for an IT company that supports SMB clients of between 3-40 people in Melbourne - I do this for a living. I definitely agree with Dave's assessment that there are many sharks out there - you need to do some research, maybe ask some other small businesses that you or your father has connections with, and see what they do for IT support.