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New IBM LTO 4 Tape Systems Are 50 Percent Faster than LTO 3

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IBM has announced new tape storage offerings based on the Linear Tape Open (LTO) Generation-4 standard, offering new levels of capacity, performance, and function, with a pricing structure for mid-size customers. IBM's enterprise-class tape encryption functionality is now incorporated into several LTO 4 tape storage products.

The IBM tape encryption technologyùcombined with implementation services for architecture, design, setup and configuration from IBM Global Services and an enhanced encryption key manager software packageùhelp address key customer issues.

IBM's new tape systems offer improved performance of up to 240MB per second data rate, which is 50 percent faster than LTO Generation 3, and increased cartridge capacity up to 1.6TB, double the capacity of LTO 3. These new tape systems also offer improved management functions, reduced space consumption, improved storage consolidation and enhanced library utilization, over LTO 3. IBM's LTO 4 tape drive encryption also helps address data security needs with rapid drive-level encryption for high backup performance; data compression, and encryption for high cartridge capacities; and reduced need for additional encryption appliances or the drain on server resources.

The industry-leading innovation behind IBM's encrypted System Storage TS1120 tape drive has been inherited by IBM's LTO 4 systems, setting them apart from competitive offerings, the company says. Using the same technology as the TS1120, IBM's LTO 4 tape systems are able to compress and encrypt data with virtually no drive performance impact, and they are able to perform on-the-fly checking of encrypted data, IBM says.

IBM will also announce enhancements to its existing Encryption Key Manager (EKM) software to support LTO encryption. Developed on the Java platform, and first introduced in September 2006 in conjunction with the TS1120 tape drive, the EKM is highly portable and supported on many different operating systems, providing for flexible implementation. The IBM EKM is being enhanced to support encryption key generation, distribution, and storage for the IBM LTO 4 tape drive. The EKM will support encryption features on IBM LTO tape libraries. This is designed to allow customers to implement encryption without changing their applications.

New and enhanced IBM System Storage tape storage products, based on the LTO 4 standard, are:

  • IBM System Storage TS2340 Tape Drive: IBM LTO 4 Drive with up to 120 MB/sec native data transfer rate and up to 800 GB native physical capacity (1.6 TB with 2:1 compression) using an LTO 4 cartridge.
  • IBM System Storage TS3100 Tape Library: Tape storage library available with one LTO 4 drive with either Low Voltage Differential (LVD) SCSI, 4Gbps Fibre Drive, or new 3Gbps dual port Serial-attached SCSI (SAS).
  • IBM System Storage TS3200 Tape Library: Tape storage library available with up to two LTO 4 drives with either LVD SCSI, 4Gbps Fibre, or 3Gbps dual port SAS.
  • IBM System Storage TS3310 Tape Library: Tape storage library with modular, scalable design available with up to 316.8 TB native physical storage slot capacity (30 to 396 LTO storage slots) and up to 18 LTO 4 4Gbps Fibre or 3Gbps dual port SAS hot-swappable tape drives.
  • IBM System Storage TS3500 Tape Library: Tape storage library with linear scalable design features and Multi-Path architecture; scales up to 16 frames, 192 tape drives, and over 6,000 cartridge slots for up to 10PB of physical capacity.

IBM will also offer enhanced data security services for tape encryption and key management through IBM Global Services. These new offerings will include implementation services for architecture and design, setup and configuration, procedure development, and training and skills transfer. Additionally, customers will be offered security-consulting services for compliance assessment, policy definition, process assessment and development, and information classification of data.

"With significant growth in business data, fixed content, and replicated data, customers need to secure their critical information with technologies like encryption, while reducing operation costs, controlling energy costs, and lowering TCO," said Cindy Grossman, vice president, IBM tape storage systems. "With the introduction of the industry's first fully encrypting tape drive ù the TS1120 ù IBM set the gold standard for tape encryption, which we continue today with LTO 4," she said. "As businesses continue to look at storage as a vital part of their infrastructures, IBM is able to offer a complete solution with disk, tape, software and services, to make that solution a secure reality."

The IBM System Storage LTO 4 tape storage systems was made available starting April 27 with starting prices of $5,170 for the IBM System Storage TS2340 tape drive LVD SCSI version, $5,681 for the IBM System Storage TS2340 tape drive SAS version, $5,770 for the IBM System Storage TS3100 tape library and the IBM System Storage TS3200 tape library, $16,530 for the IBM System Storage TS3310 tape library, and $22,800 for the IBM System Storage TS3500 tape library. The enhanced IBM Encryption Key Manager will be available on June 15.

New IBM Virtualization Engine for Open Systems

IBM has also announced the newest member of its tape virtualization family, the IBM Virtualization Engine TS7520 Solution. Designed to enhance information lifecycle management by improving utilization of tape resources, the TS7520 combines hardware and software into an integrated solution enabling tape virtualization for open systems servers connected over Fiber Channel.

The TS7520 utilizes IBM technology and software to emulate IBM tape libraries, drives and media, the company says. The solution allows users to take advantage of disk-based caching of data to help reduce backup windows and time to restore, to improve sharing of tape libraries across applications and servers, and to improve operational efficiencies.

The TS7520 is a follow-on to the IBM System Storage TS7510. Enhanced functions offered by the IBM System Storage TS7520 include: improved caching; encryption capabilities to protect sensitive customer information; hardware assisted compression designed to help improve system performance with replication and encryption; Network Data Management Protocol (NDMP) designed to provide Network Attached Storage (NAS) connections for data movement over the network; Control Path Failover and Data Path Failover to help provide higher availability of data over the Storage Area Network (SAN); iSCSI connections for the latest in open-systems standards; and hosted backup offerings allow clients to run supported backup applications. Additionally, the TS7520 allows for growth up to 512 virtual libraries, 4,096 virtual drives and 128,000 virtual volumes. The IBM Virtualization Engine TS7500 will be available June 8, the company says.

Further Momentum in Midrange Tape Storage Systems

Building on its momentum in midrange tape storage, IBM has announced that IBM System Storage TS3100 and TS3200 tape libraries will support IBM LTO 3 half height tape drives. This new offering brings to mid-sized customers LTO 3 tape drive capacity, but with slightly lower performance that allows for a low-cost solution.

The TS3100 and TS3200 now incorporate the new LTO IBM 3 half-height tape drive, in a shorter form factor height, with a native data transfer rate of up to 60 MB/sec and 400 GB of native physical capacity with an LTO 3 cartridge. IBM is also announcing an SAS interface for IBM LTO 3 half height tape drives with the option of Ultra160 LVD SCSI or 3Gbps SAS. These offerings for midrange open systems customers for whom low cost and space savings are priorities.

The IBM LTO 3 half height tape drives will be available in June with a starting price of $4,800 for LVD SCSI and $5,000 with SAS attachment.

Enhancement of IBM's Archive and Retention Solutions

Building on its leadership in archiving and retention, IBM today announced enhancements to the IBM System Storage DR550 and DR550 Express, introducing the new IBM System Storage DR550 File System Gateway, which is designed to provide broad application coverage, tape encryption support and data shredding ù secure data deletion in an archive solution ù to further protect critical business information from inadvertent loss or improper access.

The IBM System Storage DR550 and DR550 Express are designed to provide a secure, scalable, and cost-effective information retention solution for small, medium, and large enterprises and to support archiving of a broad range of information including files, e-mail, digital images, database applications, and instant messages. The new DR550 File System Gateway offers file archiving capability without requiring any application-based enablement, and provides Network File System (NFS) and Common Internet File System (CIFS) access to applications that support those standards. This will allow customers to extend the reach of the DR550 archiving solution to a broader range of archiving applications.

Additionally, IBM System Storage DR550 and DR550 Express now support key management for the latest tape encryption capabilities offered with the IBM System Storage TS1120 Tape Drive to provide enhanced information protection. The TS1120 allows for encryption within the tape drive and encryption key management independent of the application without using host resources.

Furthermore, the DR550 and DR550 Express also support data shredding of sensitive information to overwrite sensitive data which has been deleted to protect against unauthorized reconstruction.

The award-winning, industry-proven IBM DR550 and DR550 Express are designed to offer advanced archival and retention capabilities to clients whether they want to better manage information growth, control costs or preserve information for data governance or compliance reasons.

The IBM System Storage DR550 Express Version 4.0 will be available June 8 with a starting price of $24,000, plus $15,000 for an accompanying IBM System Storage DR550 File System Gateway. The IBM System Storage DR550 Version 4.0 will also be available June 8 with a starting price of $94,500, plus $20,000 for an accompanying IBM System Storage DR550 File System Gateway.

IBM System Storage Multilevel Grid Access Manager Software

Additionally, IBM has announced that through an agreement with Bycast, Inc., IBM will offer the IBM System Storage Multilevel Grid Access Manager; a software solution that enables geographically dispersed customer sites with reference data storage requirements to help improve storage utilization across sites.

Grid Access Manager Software is designed to enable new solutions for geographically dispersed customer sites with reference data storage requirements, through an enterprise-wide, fault-tolerant storage grid that includes disaster recovery capabilities. Grid Access Manager Software can extend access to remotely created reference data on heterogeneous distributed storage devices and computing resources, and can help protect data integrity via digital signature validation of managed data. Grid Access Manager software is designed to scale to help address a wide range of performance, cost, management, and data retention requirements. GAM Software enables grid-powered information lifecycle management solution, such as Grid Medical Archive Solution, to create virtual, shared storage pool for medical images and research data.

The IBM System Storage Multilevel Grid Access Manager will be available June 1 with a starting price of $6,000.



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