Request for Information (RFI)

 Restoration of FAA backup tapes and migration of restored tapes to Amazon Web Services Government Cloud


The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is seeking industry capability statements and Rough Order Magnitudes (ROMs) to determine the existence of any viable commercial solutions present in the current marketplace and to help determine the proper acquisition strategy for this requirement. No notification about the outcome of this RFI will be released.

IMPORTANT This is a Request for Information (RFI) being issued for “Market Research Purposes” only.  This is Not a Request for Quote (RFQ) or a Request for Proposal (RFP).


This RFI is for information only and does not commit the Government to pay any proposal preparation costs for responding to this notice, and is not considered an allowable direct charge to any resultant task order or any other contract. Responses to this request are informational in nature and will not be considered offers, nor will they be accepted by the Government to form a binding contract. The information submitted in response to this RFI will be used by the FAA for informational, market research, and planning purposes only. It may also be used to support the decision as to whether the requirement will be set aside for only small and/or small and disadvantaged businesses. Not responding to this RFI does not preclude participation in any future RFI(s) and/or Screening Information Requests (SIRs) related to Restoration of FAA backup tapes, if any are issued.

Respondents to this RFI are referred to in this RFI as “you”, “Vendor”, or “Vendors”.


Office of Information Technology (AIT) Infrastructure & Operations Services Branch (AIT/AIF) Manages AIT's operational environments and protects them from harm. AIF delivers effective back-end solutions, monitors the integrity of and optimizes the operation of the agency's networks, on premise and cloud data centers, client computers, and applications to ensure the FAA runs on effective and efficient infrastructure.

AIF-341 currently maintains FAA LTO2 media tapes at an offsite vaulted storage in the DC metropolitan area. The Tape vaulting services include cataloging and indexing of 27,000 + LTO2 media backup tapes in a secure, flood proof, earthquake proof, fire proof, and climate controlled environment. The services also provide return to the FAA on demand and in a secure manner to meet requirements and deadlines related to litigation holds and Freedom of Information (FOIA) request, and other e-discovery requests.

AIF-340 must properly preserve and have capability to quickly locate FAA potentially relevant records for, among other things, existing or reasonably anticipated future litigation. FAA AIF seeks information for two potential solutions:

•           Migration of the media tapes to FAA AWS (AMAZON) Cloud,

•           Migration of media tapes to digital media and provide to FAA.

Scenario #


1 – Migration from tapes to FAA AWS cloud

Restoration of all mail files from tape to FAA AWS cloud

2 – Restoration to digital media and provided to FAA

Restoration of all mail files from tape to digital format (Not in cloud) and provided to the FAA.  

The FAA currently utilizes the key existing legacy hardware and software:

–           Backup Exec 2010 R3

–           LTO2 Tape

–           IBM 4560 Series SDLT/LTO Modular SLX Tape Library

–           SCSI Controller card: NU947 Dell LSI logic Ultra320SCSI Controller



    • 27000+ LTO2 tapes – located at offsite tape storage vendor facility (Washington D.C. region)
    • Up to 65K accounts per year
    • Legal chain of custody requirement
    • All backups and restores were performed by the FAA using Backup Exec 2010 R3
    • Five years (2008 to 2014) worth of backups
      • NOTE: No additional backups being performed. 
      • 4-5 backups per month (all weekly backups)
    • Restore all tapes to digital format
    • FAA has selected Amazon AWS as the cloud vendor
      *NOTE:  Deduplication not a requirement
    • File characteristics: 
      • .NSF files
      • Contain more than mail files
        * NOTE: Only restoring mail files
    • Volume: 
      • Up to 260 identically named files per account (need to be saved/not overwritten)
      • 2500 TB of mailfile data
        Data Integrity:
    • Ensure chain of custody is maintained from tapes to end state in the cloud
    • Validate data after files are in AWS Deep Archive
      Software Requirements:
    • Lotus Domino Server (FAA owns licenses) – utilized currently by the FAA when performing restores to validate file integrity (execution of: “nUpdall”, “nCompact” & “nFixup”)
      • If vendor has equivalent validation process they may substitute in lieu of this requirement.
        Process/Training Support:
    • FAA will prepare Notes Address Book (NAB) data and provide to vendor.
      • NOTE:  FAA will provide spreadsheet containing NAB data.
        • NAB: Name, ShortName, Mail Server, Mail File, SMTP Address
    • FAA may provide training on how to access catalogs if using Backup Exec 2010 R3.  May not be needed if vendor has their own solution. 
      • FAA has 32 catalogs
        FAA will coordinate with vendor to develop approach for structure of post restored data. 
        Process Requirements:
        Tape Storage:
    • All tapes currently located in the Washington, D.C. area
    • General Services Administration (GSA) approved tape storage
      Tape Request/Return:
    • Request tapes from existing tape storage vendor
    • EG: region at a time
      Tape Restoration to Digital Format:
    • Provide digital media to FAA (If not migrated to cloud)
    • Restoration:
      • Restores by region
        • FAA has 12 regions (AWA, AMC, ACT, ASO, ANE, AEA, ACE, AGL, ANM, ASW, AWP, AAL)
      • NOTE: Everything is related to the catalog
        • All catalogs have the same structure
          • Mail folders from 0 to 9
          • Each folder alphabetically
            *NOTE: not restoring all data – only the mail files
        • Restoration of only selected folders containing mail files
      • File structure to be specified by the FAA (EG: year/name/month/week)
        • NOTE: Open to vendor recommendations. 
    • File validation (post restore): 
      • Vendor must meet the following or equivalent process: 
        • FAA current process: 
          • Lotus Notes Domino server (8.5.3)
          • Run “updall”, “Compact” & “Fixup” on Domino server to ensure validation (no database errors and file accessible) of each database.
          • Any databases that return an error after executing these commands need to be opened manually to verify that they are accessible and contain data. 
            • Log of all corrupt/issues with mail files. 
            • Search catalogs and identify alternative mail file for particular employee mail file within the same year/month. 
              Final validation:
    • Audit/report – validation of all data once all uploads are completed.
      The FAA is requesting that interested Vendors provide a “Capability Statement and Rough Order Magnitudes for one or both of the aforementioned scenarios.
      All submissions must be Times New Roman font, 12-point size text and be compatible with either Microsoft Word format or Adobe Acrobat PDF. If chosen to submit via Adobe Acrobat PDF format, please ensure the document retains the ability to copy and paste into a MS Word Document (i.e. do not submit picture files).
      RFI responses must be submitted via electronic mail (email) to the Contracting Officer, Frances Marigliano no later than 29 NOV 2021 by 5:00 pm ET.  The FAA welcomes any general comments regarding the content of the RFI. Questions or comments must be submitted in writing prior to the closing date and directed to
      The FAA may utilize contract support personnel in meeting with customer organizations and reviewing Vendor submissions. Contract support personnel will sign all relevant Non-Disclosure of Information and Conflict of Interest Agreements for any subsequent acquisition. 
      7.0 OTHER
      It is highly recommended that interested Vendors check the website frequently for any updates and amendments to this announcement.