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What is Linear Tape Open (LTO)?

Linear Tape Open is a tape storage technology for ½-inch magnetic tapes developed by Hewlett-Packard (HPE), IBM and Seagate-Certance (since 2004: Quantum), which was first licensed in 1998 and sold from 2000. Quantum’s DLT and SDLT tape storage systems, which had been widely used until then, had to make way for this concentrated wealth of manufacturers and expertise almost completely within a few years.

Over the years and from generation to generation, LTO tapes were continuously developed further. For example, the first generation offered 100 GB tape capacity (200 GB with compression) and a maximum transfer rate of 20 MB/s (40MB/s with compression). The now latest generation of LTO-9 tapes create a capacity of 18,000 GB/18 TB (45,000 GB/45 TB with compression) and a maximum transfer rate of 400 MB/s (1,000 MB/s with compression).