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comp.arch.storage FAQ 1/2
Section - [5.7] 3480/3490/3490E {brief}

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From: Tape

        Square cartridge:
		serpentine
                IBM 3480 - 18 track - 200 MB/cartridge, 1984
                IBM 3490 - Smaller packaging, IDRC standard, 1989
                        reports that it is a 3480 in ID string
                IBM 3490E - 36 track, double length - 800 MB/cartridge 
		native, 1992
        	IDRC data compression is also available.

These drives have traditionally come from the mainframe vendors --
IBM, Fujitsu, Storage Tek, etc. They were originally very large
objects, with vacuum columns and mainframe interfaces, the size of
large filing cabinets.

However, recently they have become available in smaller packages, 19"
rack mount or table top, and with interfaces such as SCSI.

Here's one from last year that I recently dug out of some old mail:

IBM has just made generally available the following:
  3490E Model E SCSI tape drive
  fast/wide differential
  IDRC compression
  3 MB/sec at the tape head, 6.5 MB/sec with compression
  approx 800 MB tape capacity with out compression, 2.4 GB with a 3:1 comp
  7 tape CSL(cartridge stack loader)
  Desk top and rack mount
  List $27,000

wener@vnet.ibm.com, 94/4/11

There's also a standalone drive with a small autoloader from a company
called Overland Data. Their L490e is a win because it reads and writes
both 18 and 36 track tapes. At $20K it's reasonably priced. For the
www-enabled, see http://www.ovrland.com/~odisales.
(tdowty@ovrland.com, 94/12/21)

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Last Update March 27 2014 @ 02:11 PM