Tag Archives: StorageDNA

StorageDNA, SNS, Backblaze, Spectra Logic partner on LTO migration bundles

StorageDNA is partnering with Studio Network Solutions (SNS), Backblaze and Spectra Logic to offer smart migration bundles that allow users to move content from archives stored on aging LTO tapes to spinning disk, cloud or newer-generation LTO tape technology. Built around StorageDNA’s intelligent archive engine, the bundled software/hardware solutions include DNAevolution software and either a Spectra Stack automated tape library; SNS disk storage with AI autotagging and the ShareBrowser file and asset manager; or Backblaze B2 cloud storage with B2 Fireball for rapid ingest of large data sets.

“Over the past five to 10 years, companies in the media and entertainment space have accumulated very large archives on older LTO-5 and LTO-6 tapes,” says Tridib Chakravarty (tC), president/CEO at StorageDNA. “With newer generations of LTO tape technology, and disk and cloud storage options becoming more affordable and attractive, companies are looking to move their data off LTO-5 or LTO-6 archives.”

The smart migration bundles offered by StorageDNA and its partners give users a way to pull data out of LTO-5 and LTO-6 archives and put it on a medium that guarantees ongoing access. Options with AI-based intelligence, metadata harvesting capabilities and accelerated transport mechanisms help users to better understand, access and leverage the content being stored.

StorageDNA’s DNAevolution intelligent archive software, newly released in Version 4.8, handles IT-centric backup and archive of folders, as well as Avid and Adobe projects within conventional media workflows. In addition to extensive metadata intelligence, the v4.8 software features smart migration capabilities, with enhanced scanning of new data and faster data transfers.

The EVO shared storage server from SNS combines a highly configurable storage array with an extensive workflow toolset for post and broadcast workflows. Every EVO system features unlimited media asset management, file automation tools, AI-powered asset tagging and enhanced integration with Adobe Premiere Pro, Apple Final Cut Pro X, Blackmagic Resolve 15, Avid Media Composer and other creative apps. EVO enables users to consolidate multiple tiers of storage into a single organized database and to edit 4K, 6K and 8K media directly from the server.

B2 Cloud Storage from Backblaze offers unlimited free uploads, and all data is instantly available for download via API, CLI or web browser with low download fees. According to Backblaze, priced at $5 per terabyte per month, B2 Cloud Storage is one-fourth the cost of Amazon’s S3. In addition, Backblaze offers the B2 Fireball, a rapid ingest service that simplifies the migration of massive data sets.

Designed to be installed, expanded and easily managed, the Spectra Stack automated tape library from Spectra Logic is rated at a 100 percent duty cycle, meaning it is one of few stackable libraries built to perform in a 24/7 environment. Scalable from 10 to 560 tape slots and from one to 42 tape drives, a Spectra Stack library enables users to store more than 6.7PB (16.7PB compressed) of data. StorageDNA has partnered with Spectra Logic to provide a Spectra Stack 80-slot, two-drive, scalable LTO solution, along with a preconfigured server with DNAevolution W.4.8 software pre-installed. In addition, Spectra Logic can include free LTO-6 loaner drives for use during the migration process.

The new smart migration bundles from StorageDNA, SNS, Backblaze and Spectra Logic are available now from the companies’ distribution partners.

StorageDNA is also offering a rental option designed for companies that aren’t prepared to invest in further LTO hardware. For about $900 a month, customers can rent an eight-slot, one-drive LTO-8 library and software to move data off existing LTO-5 and LTO-6 tapes.

NAB: Imagine Products and StorageDNA enhance LTO and LTFS

By Jonathan S. Abrams

That’s right. We are still taking NAB. There was a lot to cover!

So, the first appointment I booked for NAB Show 2018, both in terms of my show schedule (10am Monday) and the vendors I was in contact with, was with StorageDNA’s Jeff Krueger, VP of worldwide sales. Weeks later, I found out that StorageDNA was collaborating with Imagine Products on myLTOdna, so I extended my appointment. Doug Hynes, senior director of business development for StorageDNA, and Michelle Maddox, marketing director of Imagine Products, joined me to discuss what they had ready for the show.

The introduction of LTFS during NAB 2010 allowed LTO tape to be accessed as if it was a hard drive. Since LTO tape is linear, executing multiple operations at once and treating it like a hard drive results in performance falling off of a cliff. It also could cause the drive to engage in shoeshining, or shuttling of the tape back-and-forth over the same section.

Imagine Products’ main screen.

Eight years later, these performance and operation issues have been addressed by StorageDNA’s creation of HyperTape, which is their enhanced Linear File Transfer System that is part of Imagine Products’ myLTOdna application. My first question was “Is HyperTape yet another tape format?” Fortunately for myself and other users, the answer is “No.”

What is HyperTape? It is a workflow powered by dnaLTFS. The word “enhanced” in the description of HyperTape as an enhanced Linear File Transfer System refers to a middleware in their myLTOdna application for Mac OS. There are three commands that can be executed to put an LTO drive into either read-only, write-only or training mode. Putting the LTO drive into an “only mode” allows it to achieve up to 300MB/s of throughput. This is where the Hyper in HyperTape comes from. These modes can also be engaged from the command line.

Training mode allows for analyzing the files stored on an LTO tape and then storing that information in a Random Access Database (RAD). The creation of the RAD can be automated using Imagine Products’ PrimeTranscoder. Otherwise, each file on the tape must be opened in order to train myLTOdna and create a RAD.

As for shoeshining, or shuttling of the tape back-and-forth over the same section, this is avoided by intelligently writing files to LTO tape. This intelligence is proprietary and is built into the back-end of the software. The result is that you can load a clip in Avid’s Media Composer, Blackmagic’s DaVinci Resolve or Adobe’s Premiere Pro and then load a subclip from that content into your project. You still should not load a clip from tape and just press play. Remember, this is LTO tape you are reading from.

The target customer for myLTOdna is a DIT with camera masters who wants to reduce how much time it takes to backup their footage. Previously, DITs would transfer the camera card’s contents to a hard drive using an application such as Imagine Products’ ShotPut Pro. Once the footage had been transferred to a hard drive, it could then be transferred to LTO tape. Using myLTOdna in read-only mode allows a DIT to bypass the hard drive and go straight from the camera card to an LTO tape. Because the target customer is already using ShotPut Pro, the UI for myLTOdna was designed to be comfortable and not difficult to use or understand.

The licensing for dnaLTFS is tied to the serial number of an LTO drive. StorageDNA’s Krueger explained that, “dnaLTFS is the drive license that works with stand alone mac LTO drives today.” Purchasing a license for dnaLTFS allows the user to later upgrade to StorageDNA’s DNAevolution M Series product if they need automation and scheduling features without having to purchase another drive license if the same LTO drive is used.

Krueger went on to say, “We will have (dnaLTFS) integrated into our DNAevolution product in the future.” DNAevolution’s cost of entry is $5,000. A single LTO drive license starts at $1,250. Licensing is perpetual, and updates are available without a support contract. myLTOdna, like ShotPut Pro and PrimeTranscoder, is a one-time purchase (perpetual license). It will phone home on first launch. Remote support is available for $250 per year.

I also envision myLTOdna being useful outside of the DIT market. Indeed, this was the thinking when the collaboration between Imagine Products and StorageDNA began. If you do not mind doing manual work and want to keep your costs low, myLTOdna is for you. If you later need automation and can budget for the efficiencies that you get with it, then DNAevolution is what you can upgrade to.


Jonathan S. Abrams is the Chief Technical Engineer at Nutmeg, a creative marketing, production and post resource, located in New York City.