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Old May 2nd, 2008, 03:44 PM   #31
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Patrick,

I had a short discussion with the head of the LTO development group at XYZ I sent him your posts and he and I are going to have a discussion with his technical guys first part of next week after the technical guys have had a chance to look at them.

His first take on the issue of damage from shoe shining was that it wouldn't cause any stress to the heads or media, but there might be some slight concern re wear on the guiding structures from the edge of the tape itself moving back and forth. He didn't think it would be a major problem, but he'll also look into some of the testing they've done to confirm it.

He did say that the drive has the intelligence to attempt to speed match to the data rate of the arriving data by slowing the motors down to prevent excessive data under-run. He thought that all generations of the drive would be able to come close to the low data rate of the Gen 2 drive, but again would confirm this with the technical team.

Whether any of this would apply to the HP drive as well I can't say, but there are significant mechanical and logic differences between the HP and "XYZ". They also use completely different head technologies and head servo-ing mechanisms.

LTO has three sets of servo tracks written down the tape when it is manufactured and as the tape moves through the drive the heads wiggle up and down as three dedicated servo heads track the pre-written servo patterns.The mechanisms that drive the head up and down are very different by manufacturer.
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Old May 6th, 2008, 02:46 AM   #32
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Jim,
Here is another article referring to HP, IBM and Quantum drives, and suggesting that system matching is critical with all of them.
http://tinyurl.com/2j9xkq
Patrick
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Old May 6th, 2008, 03:25 AM   #33
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Patrick,

Thanks. I sent this on to the folks at "XYZ" and will follow up tomorrow.

LTO 5 is planned to be at 180 MB/s native 360 MB/s compressed

It should be out around the end of the year

LTO 6 is planned to be at 270 MB/s native, 540 MB/s compressed. It's supposed to be available end of 2010

Last edited by Jim Andrada; May 6th, 2008 at 04:45 PM.
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Old May 6th, 2008, 04:44 PM   #34
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Patrick,

Talked to my technical contacts today.They say they've tested extensively and have never seen any damage whatsoever to either drive or media from shoe-shining caused by low data rate sources.

I also talked to a contact at one of the major computer consulting companies that tracks industry data. He confirmed my belief that a significant percentage of LTO drives are used to back up Windows servers.

Also, Dell sells LTO drives, and their business is largely Windows oriented.

Both IBM and HP drives have speed matching capability that lets newer generation drives run at roughly the same speed as Gen 2 drives by tracking the incoming data rate and adjusting motor speeds accordingly. Not sure about Quantum (which acquired Seagate's LTO business).

Welcome to the wild and wonderful world of storage performance claims.

I have a couple of other calls out and will update when I hear back.
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Old May 7th, 2008, 12:31 AM   #35
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OK, I've talked to quite a few folks and I have no doubt from a hardware point of view that LTO will work just fine.

Now the big question left in my mind is what software is needed to drive it and manage the archives. This could get tricky as most packages that support it tend to be fairly large/complex/expensive packages aimed at companies with an IT staff.

I'm going to do some research the next few days. I'm also going to get a small LTO library and see what has to be done to get it working well and simply on my system. Might take me a while, but since I'm such a big LTO fan, I think it's something I need to do!

Stay tuned!
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Old May 7th, 2008, 02:43 AM   #36
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Jim,
Thanks for all of year reasearch on behalf of myself and others on this list.
Patrick
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Old May 9th, 2008, 12:01 AM   #37
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Patrick,

Thanks for your kind comment. I've asked for a sample drive to experiment with and should be able to come up with one. May take a couple of weeks to find one, though. So if you don't hear anything on this for a while, don't think I've forgotten about it.
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