Apr 19, 2022 | Other

SILICON VALLEY, CALIF. – (April 19, 2022) – The LTO Program Technology Provider Companies (TPCs), Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company, IBM Corporation and Quantum Corporation, today released their annual tape media shipment report, detailing year-over-year shipments through the fourth quarter of 2021. The report reveals 148 Exabytes (EB) of total tape capacity (compressed) shipped in 2021, marking an impressive record year for the LTO Program. With a growth rate of 40%, this strong performance in shipments continues following the previous record-breaking 114 EB capacity shipped in 2019 and 105 EB of capacity shipped in 2020 (during the pandemic).

“Despite the significant business disruptions and uncertainty in 2021, LTO tape capacity shipments achieved the largest increase since 2006, surpassing the previous record set in 2019,” said Patrick Osborne, General Manager and Vice President, HPE Storage. “We’re continuing to see organizations return to tape technology, seeking out storage solutions that offer high capacity, reliability, long term data archiving and stronger data protection measures, especially as threats to cybersecurity soar.”

As business and technical leaders around the globe continue to monitor new trends in data storage and management, LTO tape technology addresses the massive data growth of mainly unstructured data, with reduced costs. At the same time, this helps with environmental initiatives and sustainability, while ransomware and malware continue to evolve and emerge in ways that no one can predict, making cybersecurity a top concern for organizations. No company or organization can be sure that today’s solutions will meet tomorrow’s threats, however, to offer the best chance against ransomware, organizations are continuing to turn to LTO tape technology for increased data protection, especially as IDC surveys report that 90% of worldwide enterprises have experienced ransomware attacks.

Demonstrating itself to be an indispensable tool in the fight against cybersecurity, LTO tape technology offers an inherent air-gap, which is essential to denying the physical connectivity criminals need to access, encrypt or delete data. New ransomware trends are also reinforcing the need for organizations to adopt the “3-2-1-1” backup rule, which involves at least three copies or versions of data stored on two different storage mediums, one of which is off-site and one that is off-line.

“LTO tape is arguably the lowest-cost, simplest method of achieving ransomware recovery best practices,” said Phil Goodwin, research vice president at IDC. “Ransomware and malware are threats that will not go away. Magnetic tape is an established, understood, and proven technology that can be an invaluable tool for defeating ransomware.”

Available now, LTO-9 technology, is designed to support increased tape cartridge storage capacity of up to 45TB when compressed. LTO-9 drives provide full backward read and write compatibility with LTO-8 cartridges, as well as many previously introduced features, including multi-layer security support via hardware-based encryption, WORM (Write-Once, Read-Many) functionality and support for Linear Tape File System (LTFS).

The LTO Program will continue to produce annual shipment reports for tape media, which are available for download from the LTO Program website,

About Linear Tape-Open (LTO)

The LTO Ultrium format is a powerful, scalable, adaptable open tape format developed and continuously enhanced by technology providers Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), IBM Corporation and Quantum Corporation (and their predecessors) to help address the growing demands of data protection in the midrange to enterprise-class server environments. This ultra-high capacity generation of tape storage products is designed to deliver outstanding performance, capacity and reliability combining the advantages of linear multi-channel, bi-directional formats with enhancements in servo technology, data compression, track layout, and error correction.


The LTO Ultrium format has a well-defined roadmap for growth and scalability. The roadmap represents intentions and goals only and is subject to change or withdrawal. There is no guarantee that these goals will be achieved. The roadmap is intended to outline a general direction of technology and should not be relied upon in making a purchasing decision. Format compliance verification is vital to meet the free-interchange objectives that are at the core of the LTO Program. Ultrium tape mechanism and tape cartridge interchange specifications are available on a licensed basis. For additional information on the LTO Program, visit


Note: Linear Tape-Open, LTO, the LTO logo, Ultrium, and the Ultrium logo are registered trademarks of Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company, International Business Machines Corporation and Quantum Corporation in the US and other countries.