One of the biggest spring cleaning tasks is getting rid of clutter and organizing household items. This can include all parts of the home from the kitchen to closets and everywhere in-between. The same goes for business data, which needs to be organized and categorized from laptops to servers and all digital corners in-between. For data that needs to be kept securely long term, a strategic technology that is reliable, fast and economical must be employed. SSG-Now Labs put LTO-7 technology under the microscope and found it is the “Windex” of data storage spring cleaning.
In a February 2016 report, Logan G. Harbaugh, SSG-Now senior validation engineer, described how LTO-7 technology was put through a rigorous set of tests with samples of the drives and tape cartridges from multiple vendors including Hewlett Packard Enterprise, IBM and Quantum. SSG-Now Labs tested LTO-7 technology in a vast array of storage metrics including:
- Installation on Windows and Linux servers
- Constant native transfer rate performance, number of TB/hour (with and without encryption)
- Constant native capacity (with and without encryption)
- Vendor interchangeability
- Backward compatibility
- LTFS (Linear Tape File System) capability
Let’s take a close look at several sections of the tests.
The report states that installing the drives was a simple process. Servers were shut down, the drives were connected, powered up and the servers restarted. The drives were detected properly with a Windows 2012 server and an Ubuntu server. Creating LTFS partitions on the tape cartridges with the drives was also a simple process, made more flexible since the LTO specifications allow for multiple partitions per tape that began with LTO-5 technology.
Speed, Capacity and Interchangeability
The tests found the maximum throughput rate of the drive was 300MBps without data compression. If a file, such as a video or image, is not readily compressible, up to 300MBps is what can be expected. That’s fast! Other compressible files such as text files, Word documents, PDFs and so forth can actually be backed up at up to 750MBps, even with LTO encryption running. That’s real fast! This is up to 2.7 TB of backed up data per hour per drive and 15TB of compressible data per cartridge. Performance of LTO-7 drives is nearly doubled over LTO-6 drives. As observed in the report, using the native LTO encryption did not appear to affect backup times or interoperability between devices or operating systems.
Linear Tape File System – Appears in OS as a Mounted Drive
As described in the SSG-Now Labs report, copying data to the LTFS formatted tapes was easy. The LTO-7 tape drive with LTFS appeared as another mounted drive in the operating system directory. LTO-7 drives with LTFS provides the capability for files to be dragged and dropped to and from the tape cartridge similar to accessing disk or memory stick files. Harbaugh described, “making backups to an LTO-7 tape device using native OS tools was just as straightforward, with the drives detected properly by all the apps we used in testing.”
The report concludes, “We found that all of the rated specifications for speed and capacity can be reached. Set up was simple and straightforward, just as with previous versions of the LTO specification.”
Don’t hesitate, get your data clutter cleaned up and organized this spring with LTO-7 technology and LTFS. See LTO-7 drives, cartridges and LTFS demonstrated at the upcoming ISC West security conference in Las Vegas, booth #4029, April 6-8, 2016.