IBM Magstar™ MP Fast Access Linear Tape cartridges are the functional heart of the IBM Magstar MP Tape subsystem. Designed for use in midrange and server-based multi-user environments, Magstar MP Tape offers much faster data access times while improving cartridge handling reliability and data integrity over traditional tape technologies.
Midpoint loading for fast data access
Magstar MP Tape revolutionizes how applications can use tape storage. Traditionally, tape has been used primarily for write-intensive operations such as backup, archive, and data interchange-operations that do not require frequent reading of stored information. Today, however, applications that require both write- and read intensive operations can take advantage of lower cost tape storage.
With an industry-leading design that enables exceptionally fast data access, Magstar MP tape cartridges can be used as an alternative to direct access storage for some types of near-online applications that require high performance data access. To facilitate fast data access, the Magstar MP tape cartridge contains two tape spools with the tape positioned at its midpoint. Because of this design, the system, on average, has to search only one quarter the length of a tape to access data-significantly reducing search times.
After data has been located and processed, the cartridge then spools the tape back to the midpoint in preparation for unload. In this way, the midpoint load feature halves average access times to data.
A rugged design and self contained tape path to improve reliability
Compared to traditional tape technologies, the Magstar MP tape cartridge is designed to provide outstanding reliability under heavy use. The extremely durable cartridge case can withstand repetitive handling by automated pickers or human operators, thus protecting the tape from the physical environment. In addition to increasing tape life, the completely self-contained tape path eliminates tape thread time. Because the tape never leaves the cartridge, it is never touched by human hands. Likewise, the tape's only contact is at the read/write heads, which also helps to extend tape life. The absence of a tape threading mechanism enables faster load times that, combined with the midpoint load feature, provide unparalleled time-to-data levels and reliability.
Magstar MP Fast Access Linear Tape family
The Magstar MP Fast Access Linear Tape family consists of a B-format data cartridge, a C-format data cartridge, a C-format XL data cartridge, a cleaner cartridge, and a cartridge magazine. The B-format data cartridge can be used in C-format and C-format XL drives at the B-format data transfer rate or better.