Innovation accelerates within the IBM Tape family

By | 4 minute read | October 29, 2019

Last year IBM invested more than $5 billion in research and development, producing thousands of breakthrough innovations, which led to IBM’s 26th consecutive year of U.S. patent leadership.[1]

IBM leadership extends beyond the more than 9,100 patents granted to the company in 2018, however. We are also the leading tape storage vendor on the planet.[2] This success is the result of a decades-long commitment to the technology, adoption and execution of a solution strategy for modern data protection and cyber resiliency. It is based on continual improvement, ongoing innovation and constant communication with business partners and customers.

IBM TS7700 virtual tape library (VTL) is expandingToday, IBM Storage is announcing a significant innovation within the IBM TS7700 virtual tape library (VTL) family: the introduction of the new TS7770 model. TS7700 solutions are designed to provide high  performance for active data, while reducing the expenses associated with archive, data retention and backup operations behind IBM Z and LinuxONE servers.

“The announcement of the new IBM TS7770 virtual tape library is good news for IBM Business Partners,” states Bruno Lampe, CEO of Axians Cloud Builder. “With IBM Z deployments showing robust growth, storage solutions like the new TS7770 that are designed to reduce costs, increase performance, and integrate very well with IBM Z pervasive encryption and other security features are certain to be very attractive to our mainframe customers.”

Built with the most advanced POWER9 processors, the new TS7770 VTL systems benefit from years of trailblazing research and deep collaboration between the IBM Storage and IBM Z teams to deliver unique business value for mainframe deployments. TS7770 also offers transparent hybrid multicloud connectivity for infrastructure simplification, massive capacity and data replication through the cloud.

The new TS7770 VTL solutions help to improve storage economics and cyber resiliency in mission-critical hybrid multicloud environments. 20 percent increased disk density[3] helps reduce storage capacity costs by 12 percent[4] while reducing energy consumption by 14 percent per TB in comparison to the previous version[5], and Transparent Cloud Tiering (TCT) technology helps enable faster cloud object storage:

  • The TS7770 Automated Grid Cloud Failover capability is designed to help keep data readily available even if one of the sites experiences an outage. This leading-edge technology is designed to provide high availability and disaster recovery with zero seconds failover when used in grid configuration with up to eight redundant systems, 20 GB/sec of throughput, and nearly 12 PB compressed capacity, allowing mainframes to send data faster while reducing the CPU utilization associated with data management by 50 percent compared to the previous version (leveraging DS8000F off-load).
  • TS7770 supports IBM Z Pervasive Encryption to protect sensitive data at rest, in flight, and in the cloud.
  • When integrated with tape systems such as the IBM TS4500, TS7770 solutions offer a powerful “air gap” between data and online hackers, helping you build a cyber-resilient enterprise.
  • Its inherent air gap isn’t the only cyber resiliency and data protection functionality that IBM tape solutions can offer. They also provide a wide range of modern data protection features, from data encryption and key management, to write once/read many times (WORM) technology.
  • TS7770 systems are IBM Z intelligent — no additional z/OS software is required to support them, while IBM Z enjoys full access to the IBM propriety tape library command sets. z/OS sees the entire TS7770 grid instead of a series of independent tape libraries.

IBM TS7700 virtual tape library (VTL) is expandingWith IBM Tape, Amsterdam UMC is able to offer our users and researchers an even better and more reliable storage service where tape storage and disk work together to allow us to mix three levels of services (gold, silver and bronze) into a cost-effective solution in our health networks, with preservation of options ranging from 1-100 years and the knowledge that our data is protected. An additional advantage is the very low CO2 emissions, lower power consumption and cooling costs. IBM is the number #1 branded Tape supplier in the world because they are committed to innovation and improvement. This week’s announcement of further improvements to their tape drives and virtual tape solutions demonstrates that they are committed to staying the best. This is good news for the Amsterdam University Medical Centers.” –Patrick Dekkers, ICT Specialist Storage & Linux, Amsterdam UMC.

In addition to the new TS7770 VTL, IBM is also announcing the IBM TS1160 tape drive with Ethernet support. This new drive is supported by the TS4500 Tape Library, which is designed to help optimize drive utilization and reduce infrastructure requirements. TS1160 capacity can be shared on a storage area network though existing 16 Gb Fibre Channel interfaces. It is designed for hyperscale and RHEL environments with support for Ethernet 10Gb host and NAS attachment. TS1160 delivers higher capacity (20 TB native) and higher performance (400 MBps native data rate) compared to the previous TS1150 generation, which can result in lower TCO. Additionally, IBM cryptographers have prototyped the world’s first quantum computing safe enterprise class tape.

Innovation drives competitive advantage. The new TS7770 VTL and TS1160 Ethernet version tape drive demonstrate that innovation is alive and well at IBM Storage — very good news for IBM customers worldwide.

Find all the details at

[1] IBM: 2018 Annual Report

[2] IBM Systems White Paper: Defining the future of tape, July 2017 TSW03548-USEN-00

[3] Calculations based on 800TB cache size with increased disk density, using list prices

[4] Calculations based on 800TB cache size with increased disk density, using list prices

[5] Comparison versus previous TS7760 Virtual Tape Library energy consumption and disk density.