Overland Storage tells the world it has shipped more than 1,500 ARCvault low-end autoloaders and tape libraries since they were launched in July. It's great that Overland has some good news to report after the CEO firing debacle.

The company says customers are buying the products for reasons of capacity, simplicity and affordability. It claims the products provide up to 19.2 TB of storage, that's 50 percent more capacity at up to 30 percent lower cost per gigabyte than competing products.

Peri Grover, Overland's product management director, must have enjoyded having something to boast about for a change, as he said: "Early ARCvault adoption has surpassed our expectations with deployments continuing to accelerate."

Let's hope Overland can gets its REO disk-to-disk backup products shooting off the shelves at a fast rate as well so it can be restored to health after the disasterous foray into Ultamus RAID protected disk arrays.

But these product lines, the tape device and the D2D VTL line, are both well-populated with suppliers and tape's long term future is decline, according to most storage future- ologists. Overland needs a new shot in its locker; it needs new products. The removable hard drive area is one where it doesn't feature yet. Both Dell and Tandberg are in there with RDX 2.5-inch removable drive units. These are single disk cartridge products. IdeaStor has just announced an 8-bay, 3.5-Inch SATA unit offering up to 6TB. Iomega has its REV autoloader. Imation is looking for OEMS with its Odyssey and Ulysses technologies.

Dell in fact canned its OEM'ing of ARCvault in favour of the removable disk backup device. At least that's the way it looks with the timing and sequencing of the various announcements. OEM suppliers like Overland have to deliver what OEMs - like Dell - want. Of course it sells its products through the reseller channel too and tape will go through that for a while yet. But D2D is the future and removable D2D is the cutting edge of that right now.

This market looks ripe for development. It wouldn't be surprising if Overland headed that way. Let's hope the current lack of a CEO doesn't slow down its crucial need to develop new products to replace the failed and fatuous Ultamus line.