Media and Entertainment Professionals Seek Out LTO – LTFS
Where can you find over 100, 000 professionals from all corners of the media and entertainment industry to come together to witness and examine dynamic innovation and cutting-edge technologies? The answer is the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show 2016, which attracts attendees from broadcast and cable TV, digital media, film & movie studios, telecom, post-production, academia, sports, online video, IT and more. Speaking of IT, the LTO Program team was at the show, which took place in Las Vegas in April, to demonstrate LTO-7 technology and the remarkable Linear Tape File System (LTFS) that has transformed how this industry preserves precious video content for the long term.
What Do Video Professionals Want?
LTO Program representatives demonstrated LTO-7 tape with LTFS nearly non-stop during NAB. Terry Cochran, LTO Program representative, can be seen demonstrating the ease of use capabilities of LTFS to NAB attendees in Figure 1. Some media and entertainment organizations have been storing video content on pro-video tapes or removable hard drives. They found that pro-video tapes can have high costs and high maintenance of the pro-tape machines. In addition, huge amounts of floor space, rooms in fact, can be consumed as the pro-tape inventories grow. Some tried removable hard drives but learned that the drives can have a less than desirable cost per GB ratio and less than desirable reliability. Video professionals want a long term video storage system that is reliable, easy to use, high capacity, low cost, fast and portable. The answer? Drum roll…surprise: LTO technology with LTFS. Read on for details.
Using LTO Tape with LTFS
LTFS is a small open software specification – a kind of software driver – that allows a simple and intuitive means of accessing data files on tape. It is loaded one time on a workstation or server, presenting tape as an extension of the operating system.* The tape appears as a drive letter, icon, or folder in the OS directory just like other storage devices on the system. No proprietary backup software is needed. This simplifies things while also reducing costs. It’s as easy as clicking on the tape drive icon, and then viewing and accessing sub-folders and files. Files can be opened, moved, copied, and deleted like using a disk or USB stick. Drag and drop files to and from the tape…. it’s that easy! LTO-LTFS can be used with stand-alone drives to integrated implementations with LTO automated libraries, media management systems, and with disk and tape tiered offerings. These implementations can create an LTFS tape that can be used on any LTO-LTFS compatible system. LTFS tapes can be exchanged and transported easily between LTFS users working in different operating systems, using different software and in different locations. Many studios have standardized on LTO-LTFS and will only accept video content on LTFS formatted LTO tape, evidence of the data integrity and usefulness of the technology.
Movie Production Studio Standardizes on LTO – LTFS
Screenscape Studios is a production company in West Des Moines, Iowa (Figure 2), providing services that include video production for commercials and interactive videos for digital campaigns. Screenscape’s essential objectives are to control production and video storage costs while maintaining ready access to digital video content. LTO technology with LTFS provides the needed tools to accomplish these objectives as described in this 3 minute testimonial video by Vice President, Tony Dock.
LTO technology and LTFS has helped transform video storage in the media and entertainment industry and other industry segments where reliably and cost effectively preserving content for the long term is essential. Learn more about the amazing Linear Tape File System.
*LTFS is available for versions of Windows, MAC OS, and Linux.