Big Blue Takes Tape to the Next Level

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Need a mainframe computer for storage to back up mounds of data from sites all over the world at high speeds?

IBM may have what you’re looking for, for a cool half a mill.

Looking to prop up the tape storage market at a time when disk-based storage is gaining in popularity, IBM on Thursday took the wraps off the IBM System Storage TS7700 Virtualization Engine.

TS 7700

The TS7700.

Source: IBM

Designed for large businesses that store massive amounts of data, the TS7770 speeds data processing on tape systems and boosts disaster-recovery capabilities by duplicating data at a second site through global mirroring.

IBM said in a statement it will push the TS7700’S range up to eight sites, obviating complete backups to each site to cut the costs of hosting machines at each site.

The TS7700 will find the stored data with a built-in “global awareness” software tool.

The successor to IBM’s TotalStorage Virtual Tape Server (VTS), the TS770O marries the performance and capacity of the 3592 Tape Drives with high-performance disks and a new advanced IBM System p server.

The machine supports up to 128 3490E virtual tape drives and up to 500,000 logical volumes, each with a maximum capacity between 1.2 gigabytes to 12GB.

The TS7700 Server also connects up to four FICON channels, and hooks up to the tape library and tape drives for back-end tape processing.

When fitted with IBM grid software, the TS7700 can be ported to another TS7700 to provide peer-to-peer copy utilities between tape over an Internet connection.

The machine, which will be available Sept. 29 at a starting price of $493,080, includes policy management to control physical volume pooling, cache management and dual copy across a grid network.

The news comes a week after IBM rolled out its System Storage TS1120, an encrypted tape drive for businesses of all size.

In the tape storage market, IBM competes with Sun Microsystems, which acquired an extensive tape portfolio when it purchased StorageTek last year, and Quantum, which recently boosted its tape holdings by acquiring ADIC.

Article courtesy of

Clint Boulton
Clint Boulton
Clint Boulton is an Enterprise Storage Forum contributor and a senior writer for covering IT leadership, the CIO role, and digital transformation.

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