LTO Technology - Linear Tape-Open Technology

What Is LTO (Linear Tape-Open) Technology?

LTO tape, or Linear Tape-Open, has remained a competitive solution among different data storage choices for many years. Widely implemented in the entertainment industry since the `90s, LTO as data storage was appreciated for its reliability, advanced capacity, and performance. Times change, but LTO stays the same, and like any other storage solution, it has a list of pros and cons. This article will discover what is LTO and what benefits and downsides this technology can provide.

What is LTO Tape?

An LTO definition goes to an open-format tape storage technology that was originally designed in the late `90s. Open-format means the users receive access to several sources for storing their data and media. Hewlett-Packard, Seagate Technology, and International Business Machines are known as developers of this technology.

Additionally, the famous implementation of LTO is the LTO Ultrium format. The original version of Ultrium had seen the world in 2000 and could store up to 100 GB of data in its cartridge. Until 2020, developers have produced nine generations of LTO Ultrium that were significantly improved. The latest version of LTO Ultrium can carry 18 TB of data in the same-sized cartridge.

Pros of LTO


  1. Huge storage capacity

Without a doubt, an LTO technology stands for its high-capacity storage options. LTO cartridges tend to hold massive amounts of data and expand their features with every new generation. For instance, LTO-10 can hold up to 48 TB native and 120 TB compressed.


  1. A widely adopted standard

Being on the market for more than 20 years, LTO technology has become leading among other tape technologies. It remains the expected standard for archives and other industries since it can create backups for any content.


  1. Ensures long-term storage

Tapes technologies are used only when transmitting data, unlike disks or hard drives. Hard drives require to be connected with electricity consistently, while LTO tapes are a simple device for data storing. LTO can not be exposed to any hacking attacks that make them more reliable than other solutions.


  1. Reduced costs

LTO technologies stand for their low prices per 1 gigabyte compared to other storage options. Such tape technologies don`t demand much energy and provide less expensive and, herewith, capable storage.

Cons of LTO


  1. Strict storage demands

The storing place for LTO must be as clean as possible since any excessive dirt or dust can influence performance. The archival storage places are ideal for keeping LTO safe and clean.


  1. The possibility of obsolescence

Another concern related to an LTO technology goes to regular upgrades that can lead to confusion and obsolescence. However, these improvements are essential to optimize the technology working.


  1. Administrative requirements

LTO tape technologies need testing, labeling, and other tasks to ensure required access. This way, planning, and expertise are essential while working with LTO tape solutions.