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Essential Guide to Computer Data Storage: From Floppy to DVD, The by Andrei Khurshudov

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Magnetic Storage on Tape

Introduction

Unlike magnetic hard disk drives that follow strict standards in interface design, dimensions, and so on, a large variety of different tape storage systems is available today. These systems include 4 and 8 mm, 0.5"-wide helical drives as well as ¼-inch and ½-inch linear tape drives in different form-factors. Tape formats are developed based upon the conventions dictated by the organizations governing each particular tape format. As formats evolve toward higher capacity, better performance, and reliability, compatibility with all previous versions (at least, a “read-only” compatibility) is typically supported. On the other hand, there is often almost no compatibility between products from different makers ...

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