The Linear Tape File System is the first file system that works in conjunction with LTO tape technology to set a new standard for ease of use and portability for open systems tape storage. With this system, accessing data stored on an IBM tape cartridge is as easy and intuitive as using a USB flash drive. And with the operating system’s graphical file manager, reading data on a tape cartridge is as easy as dragging and dropping. Users can run any application designed for disk files against tape data without concern for the fact that the data is physically stored on tape.
The Linear Tape File System offers two different editions. The Single Drive Edition allows access to all of the data in a cartridge loaded on a single drive as if it were on disk. The Library Edition adds support for multiple cartridges in a tape library, and automatically loads the cartridge per file access. Both editions use the file system’s format and resources of the operating system (OS) on which it is running to graphically display the contents of a tape library in the OS graphical user interface (GUI) format, typically a folder/tree structure. Both editions support LTO Ultrium generation 6 and 5 as well as IBM System Storage® TS1140 Tape Drives.
The metadata of each cartridge, once mounted, is cached in server memory. Metadata operations, such as browse directory and filename search, do not require tape movement.
The Linear Tape File System provides a software solution—IBM Linear Tape File System Storage Manager—to manage and monitor archive and restore files. This software solution provides storage lifecycle management of multimedia files to reduce the cost of digital content archive software licensing while also reducing video tape cartridge costs.
Linear Tape File System Storage Manager offers a more integrated solution to tape library users. While both the Single Drive Edition and the Library Edition of the Linear Tape File System can write data on the tape, the software provides the tools that use metadata to arrange, search and manage the files at users’ convenience, according to the policies they decide.
Linear Tape File System is a significant step in moving tape storage away from its reputation as complex and difficult to use. Unlike disk storage, tape has previously required device-specific software to read, write and manage data stored on its cartridges in libraries. Even with tape management software, file access was not intuitive, as it required users to know which cartridge volume contained the files they needed. Further, because operating systems were not typically shipped with built-in tape library support, standard OS disk interfaces did not enable direct reading and writing to tape cartridges stored in tape libraries.
IBM recognizes that in order to be an attractive, more widely usable storage medium, tape must be as easy to use as any other medium, such as disk or removable flash. Such ease of use requires a file system interface that behaves like disk, as well as the flash-drive-like ability to share data without regard to platform.
Designed to meet these needs, the Linear Tape File System Library Edition, along with Linear Tape File System Storage Manager, enables users to:
Browse System Storage
LTFS EMMY® Winner
Change the way audio and video content is recorded and transmitted.
LTFS Library Edition
Navigate data on tape as easily as any other file system with IBM Linear Tape File System Library Edition