Spectra Logic launches LTO-8 Pre-Purchase Programme

Spectra Logic has launched its fourth LTO tape technology pre-purchase programme that provides its customers with access to LTO-7 drives and media for use until LTO-8 technology becomes available. Pre-purchase customers will be priority recipients of LTO-8 drives and media, allowing them to be among the first to gain the capacity and performance advantages of LTO-8.



LTO-8 tape technology doubles the capacity of LTO-7 to an astonishing 30 TB compressed (12TB native) per cartridge, and improves performance by 20 percent, up to 360Mbps. The additional capacity equates to fewer tape cartridges required to store the same amount of data while the performance boost translates into the need for fewer tape drives to do the same amount of work. In addition, the new LTO-8 drives are backward compatible with LTO-7 tape media, allowing users to read/write any LTO-7 media.




Once available, LTO-8 tape drives and media will ship with Spectra’s entire line of tape libraries and be fully compatible with Spectra’s BlueScale® library software. When fully populated with LTO-8 drives and media, all of Spectra’s tape libraries, including its most compact, the Spectra® T50e Tape Library, will support at least one petabyte of compressed storage capacity. The Spectra TFinity® ExaScale® Tape Library configured with LTO-8 will deliver 58PB of compressed storage capacity in a three-frame footprint and up to 1.6EB of compressed storage capacity in Spectra’s largest configuration of 44 frames. In addition, LTO-8 tape technology will support LTFS, WORM and AES 256-bit hardware encryption.




As LTO advancements outpace the capacity and performance increases of other storage technologies, tape continues to be relied on by the world’s largest organisations for long-term storage and archive.  LTO-8 will utilise new and improved tunneling magnetoresistive (TMR) drive heads, as opposed to giant magnetoresistive (GMR) drive heads used in previous generations of LTO tape drives. This technological advancement solidifies LTO’s future as the lowest cost storage in the industry and ensures its viability for generations to come. 




“LTO tape is the only data storage technology that has five more generations of double capacity growth in its future,” said Nathan Thompson, Spectra Logic CEO, founder and author of Society’s Genome.  “Spectra foresees the availability of LTO-9 at 24TB per tape cartridge in two years; LTO-10 at 48TB in four years; LTO-11 at 96TB in six or seven years; and LTO-12 at 190+TB in eight to nine years. I firmly believe that no other commercial data storage technology available now or on the horizon, will keep pace with or fulfill the world’s increasing demand for cost-effective, long-term data storage like tape technology.”




Spectra Logic is also introducing its new MigrationPass™ programme which provides customised options for customers with LTO-4, LTO-5 and LTO-6 tape to easily migrate data to the newest LTO tape technology. This professional services offering combined with tape drives and partitioning will allow customers to move data from older generations to the latest LTO-8 technology.




Product specifications for LTO-8 include:




·         Capacity: 12TB of native storage capacity, 30TB compressed (2.5:1 compression)


·         Performance: Up to 360 MB/sec native throughput


·         Reliability: 10-19 bit error rate



“Spectra Logic’s pre-purchase programme, which has been offered to customers for the past four generations of LTO upgrades, is a great option for anyone looking to purchase a new tape library, or maximise the benefits of their existing Spectra tape libraries,” said Spectra Logic CTO Matt Starr. “Upgrading from previous versions of LTO media to LTO-8 will provide dramatic increases in capacity, improve performance, and future-proof the investment customers have in their tape library technology, enabling them to keep pace with continuous data growth.”


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