Keeping Spidey Safe

Teen romance, super hero action and worldwide locations are all a part of the attraction for the recent “Spider-Man: Far From Home” movie which was a big hit with fans. Movies today can incorporate computer-generated graphics, utilizing multiple cameras, 3-D special effects and very high-definition video, creating a need for massive amounts of digital storage – and equally massive challenges for the storage manager. In this BlogBytes we will discuss how producers are managing these daunting storage tasks including a use case study showing how LTO technology can help Spidey and other movie icons stay digitally safe and secure!

Keep Costs Low

A typical Hollywood blockbuster can create petabytes of footage and must be kept safe throughout the production process, leading up to the final cut and beyond that, as much of it is typically reused for marketing and for future projects. Storing petabytes of this valuable content on disk or in the cloud could be cost prohibitive, which is one of the many reasons why storage executives are choosing to store the content on LTO tape. An ESG total cost of ownership study showed that an LTO-8 tape solution provides an expected TCO that is 86% lower than that of an all-disk solution and 66% cheaper than cloud storage. Controlling data storage costs is top of mind for any organization as well as protecting the content from accidental and intentional destruction. Read on to see how one studio does it.

Wildlife Producer Chooses LTO Tape

Producing high-quality wildlife films is exactly what Silverback Films is famous for. Silverback’s list of hit productions includes Disneynature Penguins and the Our Planet series. Their teams analyzed their storage requirements and determined that they needed an industry standard format that would allow them to reduce costs, reliably archive and retrieve content and provide a secure method to protect their stored video from disaster and sabotage. Silverback Films chose a set of tape automation libraries equipped with LTO drives and media formatted with the Linear Tape File System (LTFS). You can find the Silverback Films use case study here.

Storage Made Easy – Starring LTFS

What is LTFS? It is a small and innovative piece of software that is loaded one time on a laptop or server. It tells the operating system to use the LTO tape in a manner like any other storage device.This means that the tape icon appears in the directory tree structure, just like other storage devices would appear, for simple and fast access to the files that you need. The files can also be dragged and dropped to and from the tape making LTO tape intuitive to use. With LTFS, LTO tape files can be easily and intuitively stored in a manner equivalent to using a huge USB flash drive. We say huge because an LTO-8 cartridge can store up to 12TB of data natively and up to 30TB with compressible data. LTFS can be used in single drive configurations as well as medium and large automated tape library environments with archive and media management applications. To learn more, you can find an LTFS introductory video here and a list of LTFS implementers here.


LTO tape and LTFS are being widely used to control costs and to keep content safe in the media and entertainment industry. Want to see the technology in action?  Visit the LTO program team at IBC in Amsterdam September 13-17, Booth 6.A21