StrongLink LTFS

Extend Your Primary Storage
Intelligently & Seamlessly with Tape

“The solution acts like a hard drive, but provides the cost savings and protection of LTFS tape – and that’s what makes it so simple for the station to use. It was an easy decision to deploy.”

San Diego County News Center

Breathe New Life Into Tape for Active Workflows & to Reduce Storage Costs

StrongLink LTFS is a powerful next generation feature to provide seamless automated support for tape libraries from any vendor. This optional StrongLink capability is designed to make tape transparent to users and administrators, and acts as a seamless extension to tape for existing flash/disk storage platforms, opening it into a multi-protocol policy-based Global Namespace.

The new StrongLink LTFS feature takes tape to the next level, with metadata-driven intelligence that enables policy-based workflows that integrate directly into the rest of your storage infrastructure. Perfect for growing environments, StrongLink with LTFS support can expand as needed to extreme scales, while providing the simplicity and automation needed to make tape simple and transparent to users and administrators.

StrongLink LTFS supports tape libraries from any manufacturer, and integrates tape storage as a seamless extension of the global namespace. No need for additional disk cache, file stubs, or symlinks. Data can move by policy from any storage type directly to any other, including tape.

StrongLink LTFS is the successor to the legacy StrongBox LTFS NAS appliance, which for over 13 years has provided easy, file-based access to tape in some of the world’s largest archives.

The tape management solution you’ve been looking for!

Seamlessly extend your primary storage

If you have an existing tape library from any provider that you use for backup, or are considering purchasing a tape system as a “cheap & deep” storage tier, StrongLink LTFS provides the easiest way to extend your primary or secondary file/object storage onto tape to get the most out of your investment, and dramatically reduce your overall storage costs.

Scalable storage for unstructured data

Use StrongLink LTFS with the storage you already own to create a nearline and active archive storage solution. Scale capacity as your business grows without additional license fees – no more overprovisioning.

Easy Access for Users and applications

As part of the StrongLink Global Namespace, copies of files can be written to tape automatically, based upon metadata-driven policies for tiering, active archiving, data protection, and to seamlessly offload primary storage.
Users still see the files via standard SMB/CIFS, NFS, and other standard protocols. Users and applications have direct access to data copies on tape without the need for proprietary symlinks, stubs or the need for rehydration.

Lowest cost per GB

By blending low-cost LTFS tape with disk, StrongLink LTFS delivers long-term storage at a fraction of your current costs. And you’ll be shocked at how quickly you can access your data – regardless of where you choose to save it. Using Tape storage reduces costs by 80% compared with Disk, 70% compared with Cloud (including the cost of the library).

Built-in data protection

Your fixed content isn’t changing, so why is it clogging your backups? StrongLink data analytics will show you how active your data is, and can be configured to ensure that inactive data is migrated and/or copied seamlessly to nearline disk, cloud, and/or tape. The system can manage multiple copies on different storage platforms for added protection.
Retention and data protection policies may be set within StrongLink, and along with other user created metadata tags can easily drive policies for each class of data. Automatic file verification policies may be set to periodically check for bit rot on archived, or seldom accessed data.

Air-Gap Replication to Protect Against Ransomware

StrongLink LTFS can create & manage multiple file copies, and supports vaulting of tapes to create an air-gap for ransom-ware protection.

Lots of Small Files? No problem!

With StrongLink Containers, small files are no longer a problem for tape storage. StrongLink Containers create a virtual wrapper around small files for INODE reduction, so millions of tiny files work just fine with tape. Users will not need to know if a small file is in a Container or not. Individual files may be read from tape without unpacking the container or moving it to disk.

Break free from vendor lock-in

Say goodbye to dedicated hardware and proprietary software. Pick your favorite hardware vendor (flash, disk, and tape) – StrongLink works with them all. Our commitment to open standards ensures your data will always be accessible.

Here are 4 reasons why we use LTFS tape:

1. Open-standard

LTFS tape is supported in all modern tape drives including LTO-5, 6, 7 and 8 as well as IBM TS1140, 1150, and 1155.

2. Data mobility

LTFS tape allows users to share data with collaborators around the world. LTFS tape can be “plugged in,” loaded, and read by any LTFS-ready drive, regardless of operating system or software application. And a tape can be exported and shipped or taken to a second location – no problem, and no dependency on StrongLink.

3. Simple, file-level accessibility

LTFS tape is self-describing and transforms tape into a file system so that applications can find files quickly.

4. Reliability

The latest LTO-8 tape delivers the best bit-error rate around. It’s four orders of magnitude more reliable than disk.

What is LTFS tape?

And more importantly, why does it matter?
Here are 7 Things You Need to Know About LTFS

Protecting Unstructured Data Has Never Been so Simple

StrongLink’s LTFS data protection is fully automated and customizable to any of your business workflows:

  • Create copies of data on multiple, separate tape cartridges.
  • Export tape media from your library for off-site vaulting.
  • Replicate data off-site for secure protection and instant
    recovery.
  • User-definable policies make the solution configurable for any scenario.

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