back to article Tape lives on: Sony to squeeze out LTO-6

Tape is not dead: Sony, which has stopped developing its proprietary AIT/Super AIT tape media, has signed up for an LTO-6 licence agreement. Sony's Storage Media Division has decided there is life in tape yet and is licensing LTO-6 media manufacturing rights from the Linear Tape Open (LTO) consortium of HP, IBM and Quantum, …


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  1. NoneSuch Silver badge

    I likes tape

    I don't ever want to be in a position where I need to recover from tape, as I have a layered approach of multiple sites, servers, Volume Shadow Copy, DFS files, D2D backups with tape being the last hope.

    Still, I get a warm fuzzy feeling knowing that tape is in the fireproof safe, just in case all else fails. :)

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hang on, 3.2TB with a transfer rate of 210MB/s

    That's 42 hours to fill a tape! So much for overnight backups.

    1. Ammaross Danan

      Decimal places

      You may want to check your decimals. I come out with 4.2328hrs to write the whole tape, assuming the top speed of 210MB/s is consistant (and assuming it doesn't need a read pass for verification or the like)

    2. Pondule

      210MB/s = 210*60*60/1000 =756GB/h so a little over 4 hours to fill a tape if your disks can feed it fast enough.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Kit that has this usualy has a disc drive to buffer. Idealy your setup in a way that backs up a image to disc and then you back that up to tape, meaning the live system is in a backup process for as short as possible. But yeah 4 hours to wrtie the tape is realy something you have to factor in your recoveriy process in respect of reading the tapes, let alone time to get them from storage to the live systems tape reader. But it is supposed to be a last ditch event and enables location to a nice firesafe. Though if you can get a network connection to a offsite location that runs faster then you realy do have alot to start costing up. I see for larger operations were time is realy costly that having a dedicated network connection to a offsite storage location being viable. SO in that respect the fluffy cloud solutions are becomming competition for tapes. Gets down to trust in the storage media/location for most and for those who have had to use a tape backup a case of time.

  3. Jim 59
    Thumb Up

    I likes tape too

    And it will still be going in 10 years. It's the only practical way to backup large volumes of important data, and I mean large, and important.

    Regarding speeds, tape keeps up with Moore's law, generally, whereas network speeds do not. Tape write speed is rarely the bottleneck.

  4. L.B

    After reading this I feel old...

    I remember the very first version of these DLT tapes back the 80's (designed by DEC and later sold to Quantum), where a TK50 could store a massive 55MB (or there about).

    Of course back then we had decent operating systems (VMS,RSTS,...) that came with a full backup system as standard, you didn't have to buy some 3rd party kit. So doing a full disk image backup/restore to/from disk(s) or Tape(s) was easy, with incremental backups for the typical weekday workloads.

    Also back in days of removable disk packs (18" and 12 platters) doing the monthly image backups guaranteed a 100% fragment free file system.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    As my boss says, tape will always be needed.

    A tape in a fireproof safe is far more secure than a virtual tape device running in a server room somewhere, even if it's off-site.

    The reason my boss gave - there's nothing to stop a disgruntled employee with access to that area coming in and p155ing on the machine.

    Safes are p155 proof! ;)

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