How do you sex up a tape library? Fujitsu marketer: “Ransomware!”

Fujitsu has applied a thin coat of ransomware marketing gloss to the most unlikely thing, a new mid-range tape library called the LT140.

Here’s the pitch. Stored tapes are offline and therefore provide an air-gap defence against ransomware attacks. That means clean offline versions restored from the library replace online files affected in an attack.

Hope springs Eternus

Olivier Delachapelle, head of data centre category management at Fujitsu EMEIA, says high-capacity tape libraries should be an “essential part of any 3-2-1 data protection strategy: keep at least three copies of data, store two backup copies on different storage media, and store one offline.”

Naturally, restores from tape are slower than restores from disk. Also data added to files after the last backup but before a ransomware attack is lost in a tape restore.

The vulnerability window is typically shorter if disk-based snapshotting and backup is used, as with Cohesity’s Data Platform v6.1.1. The choice comes down to data protection strategy and price/performance judgements. Tape is usually the lower cost option.

Meet the family

The new ETERNUS LT140 is a 20-280 slot, 3-21 drive system with a 3U base box. Total capacity scales up to 8.4PB (compressed) using LTO-8 tapes.

The LT140 is sold on a pay-as-you-grow basis and scales by adding drives and cartridge slot. The system supports LTFS access and WORM (Write Once; Read Many) format cartridges.

The LT140 sits above three lower-capacity libraries:

  • LT20 S2 – 8-slot, 1-drive, 2U cabinet and 240TB max capacity
  • LT40 S2 – 24-slot, 2-drive, 2U cab, 720TB max
  • LT60 S2 – 48-slot, 4 drive, 4U cab, 1,440TB max

The LT260 and LT270 libraries cap Fujitsu’s range.

The ETERNUS LT140 is available in EMEIA from February 2019, directly from Fujitsu and through channel partners. No published prices, as per usual.

P.S.

Fujitsu does not make its own tape libraries and drives. Only IBM and HPE make LTO-8 drives and, along with SpectraLogic, make LTO-8 libraries. We reckon Fujitsu is OEMing HPE’s StoreEver MSL 3040, The two pieces of hardware have similar specs and look identical.

Fujitsu ETERNUS LT140 on left and HPE StoreEver MSL3040 on the right.
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