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only 3 types of tape

Posted on 2011-02-19
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
other than 3/4/5 are there any other types, that are in the market now, either from yester-generations or latest one?

thanks
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Question by:anushahanna
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Lee W, MVP earned 200 total points
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What are you talking about - 3/4/5?  Do you mean LTO 3, LTO 4, and LTO 5?  If so, those are just GENERATIONS.  There are dozens of types of tapes - see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_Tape_Format
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by:Gerald Connolly
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by:Gerald Connolly
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A long time ago round tapes were the standard as beloved by film and TV makers, but round tapes are hopeless unreliable for automation so IBM released the 3480 cartridge and DEC the TK50 cartridge (pre-cursor to DLT) in 1984 to solve these problems.

Yes there were loads of other formats but they were mainly low-cost, but they all had problems with reliability or other design flaws.

When the TK50/TK70 formats evolved into DLT which really took over as the backup medium of choice in the non IBM mainframe space which was concentrated on the 3480 and its evolutions.

DLT went through several generations getting faster and holding more, and then along came LTO and took over the world, to the extent that Quantum stopped DLT development in 2007.

DLT and LTO are similar in that they both store the data in a linear serpentine manner.
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by:anushahanna
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Thanks for clarifying that.

so LTO standard can be used by any company? like DEll LTO, HP LTO etc?
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by:Lee W, MVP
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Yes.
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by:Gerald Connolly
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From Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linear_Tape-Open)

Linear Tape-Open (or LTO) is a magnetic tape data storage technology originally developed in the late 1990s as an open standards alternative to the proprietary magnetic tape formats that were available at the time. Hewlett-Packard, IBM and Certance (at that time the removable storage systems division of Seagate Technology and now Quantum Corp.) initiated the LTO Consortium, which directs development and manages licensing and certification of media and mechanism manufacturers.

Most of the drives out there are either IBM or HP. The standard allows some leeway, so IBM has gone one way in trying to cope with low data rates and HP another. IBM has gone for a stepped reduction in speed, whereas HP has gone for a continuous variable speed method. Both methods are effective in reducing the onset of shoe-shining, but as the drives get faster and faster the threshold gets higher and higher.
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by:Lee W, MVP
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To be clear, the DRIVES may be BUILT by IBM or HP most of the time and then used in the tape system you purchase.  It's like a car's tires - Your Ford may come with Firestone Tires, but it's still a Ford and other companies may also use Firestone tires, but that doesn't make them Fords.
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by:anushahanna
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Thanks for the clear explanation.
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