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The high-end drive carries a single-reel tape for high capacity and has a native 2Gbit/sec Fibre Channel interface. The technology drops the per-gigabyte price of tape storage down to 47 cents or .0047 cents per megabyte. Currently, the least expensive disk drives (ATA-attached) cost about 2 cents per megabyte.
"This represents the first tape device on the [National Storage Industry Consortium] tape roadmap for maintaining a competitive edge against disk aerial density," said Richy Mizrahi, a senior product marketing manager at StorageTek.
The T9940B tape cartridges are priced at $99 (£63), while the tape drive will have a list price of $39,500 (£25,273).
"This tape drive does the work of two or three midrange tape drives - backing up multiple servers sequentially throughout the day. This is the tape drive that stands up to that kind of work," Mizrahi said.
StorageTek has also detailed its latest open-system disk array, the StorageTek D280, which scales from 14 to 224 drives to provide as much as 32Tbytes of capacity. The array sports full end-to-end 2Gbit/sec Fibre Channel interfaces, runs at 148,000 input/outputs per second with 800Mbyte/sec throughput rates and currently uses 36Gbytes or 73Gbytes drives.
"We expect to have 146Gbyte drives around November," said Sue Leenerman, a StorageTek senior product marketing manager.
Along with the array, StorageTek will release the D200 Disk Array Controller and SANtricity Storage Manager 8.3 software, which allows management of both entry and Enterprise Disk Subsystem from a single management interface. Logical Unit Numbering (LUN) partitioning allows for maximum utilisation of investment by providing the ability to define multiple LUNs within each RAID group.