May 15, 2012
IBM celebrates 60 years of Tape Storage

60 years of Tape Storage

IBM celebrates the 60th anniversary of the company’s magnetic tape innovation – a technology that helped the fledgling electronic calculating industry move from paper punch cards to electronic storage for the first time and usher in the modern age of computing.

Storified by IBM SmarterComputing · Tue, May 15 2012 13:33:57

Join us as we celebrate Tape’s 60th yr. See how #IBM #Storage pushes the boundaries of #tape http://vsb.li/Ca2Yy3 #tape60 #ibmstorageIBM Storage

Tale of the Tape 1952 - 2012

IBM Tape Systems - 60 years of innovation and countingIBM Tape Systems - 60 years of innovation and counting landing page
IBM 60th Anniversary of TapeIBM Research

350 Disk Storage Unit

Unpacking the IBM 350 Disk Shortage Unitrandyfmcdonald

The 350 Disk Storage Unit consisted of the magnetic disk memory unitwith its access mechanism, the electronic and pneumatic controls forthe access mechanism, and a small air compressor. Assembled withcovers, the 350 was 60 inches long, 68 inches high and 29 inches deep.It was configured with 50 magnetic disks containing 50,000 sectors,each of which held 100 alphanumeric characters, for a capacity of 5million characters.


Disks rotated at 1,200 rpm, tracks (20 to the inch) were recorded atup to 100 bits per inch, and typical head-to-disk spacing was 800microinches. The execution of a “seek” instructionpositioned a read-write head to the track that contained the desiredsector and selected the sector for a later read or write operation.Seek time averaged about 600 milliseconds.

IBM 726 (1952)

IBM 726 (1952)ibmphoto24
IBM 726 (1952) IBM introduced the IBM 726 as a new way to storecomputer-generated data. The system solved a key challenge of tape atthe time - breakage - through the use of a “vacuum column” thatcreated a buffer of loose tape. As a result, the relatively brittlemagnetic tape could withstand the system’s fast starts and stopswithout snapping. Tape storage has evolved in many ways since the 726was introduced with the 701 and it remains the most cost-effective,flexible and scalable medium for high-capacity storage backup today.

IBM 3480 Magnetic Tape Subsystem(1984)

IBM 3480 Magnetic Tape Subsystem(1984)ibmphoto24
IBM 3480 Magnetic Tape Subsystem (1984) The 3480 Magnetic TapeSubsystem was a major milestone in IBM storage. IBM changed theindustry standard reel design with a brand new “cartridge” for tapestorage that was smaller, faster, and offered more storage capacity.

3495 Tape Library Dataserver (1992)

IBM 3495 (1992)ibmphoto24
IBM 3495 (1992) IBM introduces the 3495 Tape Library Dataserver, anautomated tape library that consists of one to four IBM 3490 MagneticTape Drive Subsystems, a Library Manager computer, a storageenclosure, and a tape cartridge accessor robot, which featurescontinuous robotic motion.

IBM Magstar 3590 Tape Subsystem (1995)

IBM Magstar 3590 Tape Subsystem (1995)ibmphoto24
IBM Magstar 3590 Tape Subsystem (1995) IBM makes a great improvementin storage capacity by launching Magstar 3590 holding up to 60GB withcompression. The 3590 provided up to a 100-fold improvement in dataintegrity over its predecessor, the IBM 3480, and 12 times thecapacity of the previous tape cartridge.

IBM LTO (2000)

IBM LTO (2000)ibmphoto24
IBM LTO (2000) IBM, HP and Seagate initiated the linear tape-open(LTO) technology format in 2000. LTO drives are widely used with smalland large computer systems, especially for backup, and in 2000 couldstore up to 100GB of data. IBM is the first to market with LTOgeneration 1 tape, now in its 5th generation.

IBM TS1120 (2005)

IBM TS1120 (2005)ibmphoto24
IBM TS1120 (2005) IBM introduces TS1120, the next generation inenterprise tape drives with dramatic improvements in speed, capacity,and compatibility. The TS1120 addresses the needs of tape customersacross a broad range of computing environments.

IBM breaks tape density record (2010)

IBM breaks tape density record (2010)ibmphoto24
IBM breaks tape density record (2010) The scientists at IBM Researchin Zurich, Switzerland, in cooperation with the FUJIFILM Corporationof Japan recorded data onto an advanced prototype tape, at a densityof 29.5 billion bits per square inch – about 39 times the arealdensity of today’s most popular industry-standard magnetic tape. Dr.Evangelos Eleftheriou, IBM Fellow, holds a dual-coat magnetic tapebased on barium ferrite (BaFe) particles that were used to demonstratethe world record in areal data density.

IBM LTFS (2010)

IBM LTFS (2010)ibmphoto24
IBM LTFS (2010) IBM creates the IBM Linear Tape File System, a newtape specification that makes managing files on tape as easy as ondisk, including support for drag and drop features, and more.

IBM TS1140 (2011)

IBM TS1140 (2011)ibmphoto24
IBM TS1140 (2011) IBM creates the fourth generation of the highlysuccessful IBM 3592 Enterprise Tape Drive, the IBM TS1140. The TS1140can hold two millions times more data than the 726 and is designed toprovide high levels of performance, reliability, and cartridgecapacity.
As 60th anniversary nears, tape reinvents itselfStreaming media, the cloud and Big Data will play important roles in tape’s future. Computerworld - The 60th anniversary of IBM’s digital…

2012 Alpha TV

IBM today announced that AlphaTV, a leading television network in Greece, has overhauled its storage infrastructure with IBM high performance.

AlphaTV has been broadcasting since 1996, creating and storing all forms of video entertainment, from soap operas and documentaries, to movies and sporting events, and creating a vast video archive along the way. Initially, AlphaTV archived its programming on Sony Beta SP format video cassettes that stored up to 90 minutes of content. Not long after, in need of storage that offered greater density, it turned to DVCPRO format videos that stored up to 120 minutes. But even that format was not allowing the network to keep pace with its ballooning archive, a storage infrastructure that by 2011 spanned over 1,507 square feet.

To get greater control of this infrastructure, AlphaTV turned to IBM and its Linear Tape File System (LTFS) and IBM Linear Tape Open (LTO) Ultrium 5 tape drives, that can store up to 3TB, with 2:1 compression in a single cartridge. With this solution, AlphaTV has been able to store more content in far less space.

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