Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Estimating the Total Cost of Long Term Data Storage

As the amount of data organizations create and manage continues to grow, the cost-effective storage of infrequently accessed information has become a significant challenge. There are several different technologies available for long term data storage, and the one of the significant management issues is to understand the total cost of the different technologies for long term storage of cold data. Working with FujiFilm, I developed a simple, easy to use calculator that provides an estimate of the 10-year total cost of ownership of data storage using tape, cloud and disk technologies. The tape storage costs are based on LTO 7 tape drives and media. The disk storage costs are composed of an average of high capacity, low cost disk systems using 10 TB Enterprise HDD’s while the cloud storage cost estimates are based on an industry leading cloud storage provider. The estimates include the cost of a refreshing the disk and tape infrastructure after 5 years. Here’s a link to the tool TCO Tool.

Friday, October 13, 2017

LTO 8 is here!

On October 10th IBM announced the next generation of LTO tape drives, LTO generation 8. The new tape drives are available in a variety of platforms, from the single half-height drive desktop system, to the enterprise class tape libraries; TS3500 and TS4500. All the platforms are planned to be available this year with different availability dates ranging from October through December. For details here is the link:  Details.  IBM provides a video from the development team discussing the new offering IBM LTO 8 and there is also an article in Forbes LTO 8.

The LTO 8 announcement represents a return to the good old days, when the LTO program was running on a two to 2 ½ year announcement cycle between generations. The new tape offering, will support a 12 TB tape cartridge, providing a very high capacity, scalable, resilient and secure storage media for backup and archive applications. Clearly, given the amount of data that is being created and stored today, organizations of all sizes must consider tape storage to deal with the massive quantities of data in a cost effective and energy efficient way.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Using LTO and LTFS to Improve Media and Broadcast Industries Workflows


The LTO Program just released an eBook entitled “Best Practices for Managing Video Workflows” Trust LTO WhitePapers . The Media and Broadcast industries have experienced a digital revolution that has fundamentally changed the way the industries produce content. Digital technology has proliferated across the workflow; from production, to post-production to distribution and archive. This eBook discusses this revolution, and how LTO with LTFS is being utilized across the entire process to reduce costs, improve workflows and protect content. 

Thursday, August 3, 2017

A new tape storage technology benchmark

IBM Research and Sony announced a tape technology demonstration yesterday that would support a potential tape cartridge capacity of 330 TB. As organizations continue to experience rapid digital data growth, tape technology is positioned to provide a cost effective storage solution in the coming years. Tape Technology Demonstration

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Interested in the history of IBM Data Tape Storage?


The Computer History Museum ( http://www.computerhistory.org/ ) just released the video history of IBM tape storage including the IBM 3480 (introduced in 1984), tape media , an overview of tape products and tape product management  and LTO tape (introduced in 2000). The interviews include current and former IBM development, business and marketing personnel that participated these programs.  

If you’re interested in the history of this storage technology, then these interviews will provide a very informative and entertaining education on the evolution of tape storage. They are not short, so break out the popcorn, find a comfortable chair and enjoy!

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Cloud Storage: Rent or Buy?



With data archive requirements continually growing, the Cloud is frequently mentioned as a low cost option for storing infrequently accessed data. But is it really the lowest cost alternative for the storage of infrequently accessed information? This analysis demonstrates that a private cloud solution has a significantly lower Total Cost of Ownership over five years. Cloud Storage: Rent or Buy?

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

IBM Unleashes LTO Generation 7



Yesterday IBM announced a comprehensive set of tape storage offering incorporating the new LTO generation 7 tape drives. The new LTO 7 tape drives and media provide a native cartridge capacity of 6 Terabytes (15 TB with compression) up from 2.5 TB in the LTO 6 offerings and a data rate of 300 MB/second up from the 160 MB/Second for LTO 6.  As with previous generations, the new tape drives protect customer’s media investment by having the ability to read and write to LTO 6 tape media, and reading LTO 5. The new LTO Gen 7 tape drives are incorporated across a broad set of platforms and libraries from entry, standalone half height SAS tape drives, to small tape libraries, to mid-size libraries, to large enterprise fiber channel tape libraries. An overview of the announcement can be found at LTO Overview and Tony Pearson from IBM updated his blog here: IBM Storage Blog. Details on individual offerings can be found here IBM LTO announcement. All of the offerings show planned availability dates in 2015 with the first shipment dates varying from 10/23/2015 to 12/4/2015. 


As customers wrestle with the growing demands to store, manage and preserve dramatically growing amounts of digital data, the new LTO 7 tape solutions provide a welcome relief. The higher capacity and performance of LTO Gen 7 provides the ability to cost effectively store very large amounts of archive, big data, video, and other information. By integrating with a broad range of tape automation, IBM customers can apply the new technology across a wide range of capacity and performance requirements.