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Virtual Tape Appliance

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The Virtual tape Appliance (VTA) is a virtual tape controller for IBM System/390 mainframes that provides the ability to emulate mainframe tape files on any open storage device via an ESCON or Parallel (Bus & Tag) channel connection to the mainframe. The Virtual Tape Appliance is compatible with z/OS, OS/390, VSE and VM, and performs with or without a tape management system. It operates completely transparent to the operating system, providing the ability to read and write tape data sets to a NAS, SAN or RAID device with no program or JCL changes. The VTA supports up to four ESCON or Bus & Tag adapters; each Adapter can emulate up to 64 IBM 3490E tape drives. The Virtual Tape Appliance offers significant operational improvements which result in substantial cost savings for the mainframe user. Some direct benefits of the VTA include:
  • Reduction in physical tape drives and associated maintenance
  • Reduction in the number of tape cartridges and handling thereof
  • Reduction in floor space for tape drives and tape library racks
  • Advanced Backup/Restore, Archive, and Disaster/Recovery
  • Improved Operational Flexibilities:
    • Dramatically reduces tape mounts
    • Provides completely unattended operation
    • Enables totally remote operation
    • Reduces reruns due to operator error
    • Eliminates contention for available drives
    • Eliminates transporting tapes between the mainframe and PC
  • Additional Capabilities:
    • GUI as well as automated file management
    • Automated tape scratch procedures
    • "Zip and Ship" for off-site storage
    • Automated virtual mount management
    • Provides Generation Data Sets without a tape manager
    • Advanced import/export capabilities

VTA users have the option to utilize the VTA software on their own Windows server or to acquire a VTA server from Universal Software.