LTFS (Linear Tape File System) is a file system specification that allows Linear Tape-Open (LTO) storage technology to be indexed.
- Easy and fast access to large files: 2.5 TB native capacity for a single LTO-6 tape
- Drag and drop functionality
- Appears as storage device to operating system
- Enables standard applications to write and read to LTFS formatted tapes
- Non-proprietary format provides investment protection for archive/long term storage
LTFS partitions LTO-5 or LTO-6 tapes into two segments called partitions. Partition 0 holds directory structures and pointers that let the tape drive quickly seek specific data from the tape; the data itself is stored in Partition 1. Applying a file system to a tape allows users to organize and search the contents of tape as they would on hard disk, improving access time for data stored on tape. LTFS makes it possible to drag and drop files to tape in the same way that files might be dragged and dropped to disk.
After a cartridge is loaded, the drive quickly reads the index and metadata partition on the tape without having to scan the entire tape. This allows for faster and more efficient access to the data stored on the tape.