Hey Tape! What’s up?

If you’re interested in learning what’s happening with tape, this BlogBytes will provide insight to new trends for tape storage, an overview of the tape market and where it’s used with a case study showing  how a big scientific firm with tons of data is utilizing LTO tape to the max.

New Trends for Tape

An article by Enterprise Storage discussed new trends in tape storage: “Tape has experienced a resurgence as strategic and low-cost storage for massive unstructured data.

And while backup remains an active use case for tape due to its value for fast site restores and anti-ransomware, tape’s future growth opportunities lie in new and emerging areas.”  The article points out that “[t]he tape industry is keeping pace with the storage development curve with new layers of technology. New tape technology innovations have secured tape’s position as a key technology in new data-intensive environments and emergent use cases. Advanced artificial intelligence (AI), rich applications that leverage video and other streaming data, and the Internet of Things (IoT) are shifting tape’s market drivers towards long-term retention of massive data stores.”

Where Is Tape Being Used?

Tape is used in cross-industry segments around the world, from retail and wholesale distribution for records retention, to finance, banking and science exploration. The Enterprise Storage article notes that “[t]ape is also popular in massively scaled research environments like genomics, life sciences, and climate change. In one scenario, a major genomics sequencing lab replaced hard drives with tape. Their storage costs plummeted from $800,000 to $7,000.”

Seeking the same reliability and affordability as other industries, large science labs also make key use of LTO technology. We discuss a specific use case below.

 Science Lab Has Huge PB Growth

Brookhaven National Labs (BNL), located in Uptown, New York, delivers discovery science and transformative technology to power and secure the United States’ future, which includes fundamental research in nuclear and particle physics. As they advanced their research, they faced a data storage predicament – their pool of data from scientific research was experiencing growth by tens and even hundreds of petabytes (PB) per year. BNL put a storage plan in place to control costs as well as to reliably and securely handle increasing data storage loads.

Using LTO technology, they implemented an active archive system with automated tape libraries, capable of handling high throughput read-write processes for this large petabyte operation. You can see the full case study here for more information.

So what’s up with tape? Lots actually! Tape technology has a bright path ahead, which is good news for storage managers who are concerned with controlling costs and preserving data in the long-term. See the LTO technology roadmap here for more information and learn more by watching an LTO technology video here.

Come visit the LTO Program team and see LTO technology up close at IBC in Amsterdam September 13-17, Booth 6.A21