ING telescope data are recorded to disk in .SDF format, and to tape in FITS format. The preferred medium is Digital Audio Tape (DAT), the second choice is Exabyte tape. It is the responsibility of the observer, or the support astronomer if present, to generate the archive tape (D-tape), and operations staff will normally provide a copy tape (C-tape) in FITS format on 9-track tape, Exabyte or DAT at the request of the observer. Alternatively the observer can create his or her own copy of the data in FITS format, or with the VMS BACKUP utility, on any of these media.
D-tapes can be created on any VAX in the cluster which has access to the required storage device, but the normal procedure is to do this on the main data reduction VAX LPVE. The observer should log onto this machine in the OBSERVER account (password will be known to local staff), mount the tape on the required drive, then use the utilities FITSINIT (only for a new tape!) and WRITE_FITS, which are described in more detail in Sections 4.9 and 7.1. A C-tape for the observer can be done at the same time, or this can be done by La Palma staff; for the latter, a Tape Copy request form should be filled out, indicating what kind of C-tape is required.