IBM’s newest tape cartridge can hold a staggering 30TB of data

IBM has unveiled a new generation of tape storage technology, LTO-8, which provides a huge boost compared to the previous generation, and is capable of storing 30TB of data per cartridge.

LTO-8 is expected to be unleashed before the end of the year, and it offers a compressed capacity of 30TB and native capacity of 12TB, which is double that of LTO-7.

It further boasts faster native and compressed transfer rates of 360MB/s and 750MB/s respectively (compared to 300MB/s and 700MB/s for the previous generation). As Storage Newsletter reports, the new tech also means costs are now down below the half-cent per gigabyte barrier.

Security first

The new standard maintains compatibility with LTO-7, and on the data security front, IBM notes: “The LTO Ultrium 8 technology is also designed to natively support data encryption, with core hardware encryption and decryption capabilities resident in the LTO Ultrium 8 tape drive itself.”

Tape storage is still popular for a number of reasons, including the security aspect of being able to physically lock away the storage media, and affordability when compared to the likes of capacious spinning disks (you could also look cloud-wards, but that’s a whole other kettle of potential security worries).

Clearly, much bigger and more affordable tape cartridges aren’t going to hurt when it comes to the continued use of this backup/archive storage medium.

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).