Spectra Logic unveils denser Cube tape library and LumOS management software

Spectra Logic has announced a new Cube tape library, LumOS tape library management software, and a TFinity Plus version of its enterprise tape library.

There are three existing Spectra Logic library products: the Stack entry-level, T950 mid-range, and ExaScale high-end enterprise system. The single rack Stack scales from one 6RU module to seven, with a control module and up to six tape modules, each holding 80 LTO tapes and up to six half-height drives. The T950 scales from 50 to 10,250 LTO slots, with loading via 10-cartridge TeraPack trays, and has up to 120 tape drives. The ExaScale has from 3 to 45 frames (specialized racks), supports LTO, IBM TS1170 and Oracle T10000 tapes, and is in a different league from the other two altogether.

Matt Ninesling, Spectra Logic senior director of tape portfolio management, said: “The escalating costs of public cloud storage have forced a reckoning, leading to significant interest in moving data to more economical locations including on-prem clouds and hybrid clouds. Compared to typical public cloud options, Spectra Cube solutions can cut the costs of cold storage by half or more, while providing better data control and protection from existential threats like ransomware.”

Spectra Logic’s Cube comes in a 42RU standalone frame measuring 79.4 x 35.9 x 45.4 inches. A standard IT rack is smaller, at 73.5 inches high, 19 inches wide, and 36 inches deep.

Spectra Logic Cube library with top loft holding a BlackPearl system
Spectra Logic Cube library with top loft holding a BlackPearl system

The Cube has up to 30 PB of native capacity, with up to 1,670 slots, compared to the Stack’s max of 10.1 PB, with max compressed capacity of 75 PB. Up to 16 full-height or 30 half-height LTO tape drives may be intermixed, delivering a max native throughput of 32 TB/hour. Marketwise, it’s positioned above the Stack, with its maximum native throughput of 30 TB/hour, and below the T950 libraries. 

It supports LTO-6 through 9 format tapes and future generations as they arrive. It also supports up to 16 logical partitions for multi-tenant environments and a 10-cartridge TeraPack access port. Drive interfaces include Fibre Channel and SAS, and optional Ethernet-to-SAS bridges eliminate the need for dedicated SAN connections.

The Cube can be dynamically scaled and deployed in minutes. It’s serviceable without tools or downtime. Spectra Logic’s LumOS is the management software, which integrates with Spectra Logic’s BlackPearl object storage to provide a backing tape tier with Amazon S3 and S3 Glacier compatibility.

There is a Cube capacity-on-demand expansion model. Additional tape slots can be dynamically enabled via software while additional tape drives can be added to scale performance, all without downtime, tools or service calls.

Spectra Logic says that Cube environmental costs for power and cooling are substantially lower than object-based disk or flash systems, and it has a storage density of more than 2.5 PB/sq ft of datacenter floor space. An optional loft enclosure can accommodate rackmount devices, including Spectra Logic BlackPearl storage, industry-standard servers and more, simplifying connectivity and increasing floor space efficiency.

LumOS management software

This is a new version of Spectra Logic’s tape library management software. It’s said to have an intuitive, feature-rich interface with secure local and remote access, and is multi-threaded and extensible. Spectra Logic claims it’s up to 20x faster than the previous generation software. The features include:

  • REST API for automation of all library functions including software upgrades
  • Integrated partitioning for shared or multi-tenant environments
  • Capacity-on-Demand (CoD) for dynamic addition of media slots
  • AES-256 encryption and key management for LTO drive-based encryption
  • Library and drive lifecycle management to predict and help prevent failures
  • Automatic drive cleaning for error reduction and extended drive life
  • Media lifecycle management and data integrity verification
  • Proactive monitoring and diagnostics with email notification and automatic support ticketing

TFinity Plus

This enhanced TFinity library model supports up to 168 drives, a 24-drive increase over the TFinity ExaScale library. That means its throughput is higher than the TFinity although its maximum capacity stays the same:

Spectra Logic Tfinity specs

Spectra Logic says the TFInity Plus delivers the highest tape move and exchange rate of any available library due to the LumOS software, TeraPack magazines, and internal robotic transporters.

Any existing TFinity or TFinity ExaScale library can be field upgraded to support LumOS library management software, and will then be functionally identical to the new TFinity Plus enterprise library. 

Spectra Logic will demonstrate the new Cube library at the 2024 NAB Show, to be held April 14-17 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, NV, and at ISC High Performance 2024, May 13-15 at the Congress Center, Hamburg, Germany. Cube libraries are available to order now with a 30-day lead time. Configuration and pricing information is available upon request.