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Considering running Linux on old Mac in order to interact with TAR LTO tapes

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Logan Roeth
Considering running Linux on old Mac in order to interact with TAR LTO tapes
on Apr 30, 2015 at 1:26:24 am

Hey guys! Just hoping to find some advice here.

I do a lot of work with LTO tapes archiving and delivering media for our production company. I use LTFS, mainly with PreRoll Post on Mac OS X systems. However, sometimes I receive TAR format LTO tapes from clients that I need to restore files from. The first time I needed to do this, I downloaded the BRU PE demo so that I could use the Tolis Tape Tools to do this. When I tried to use it again today, I realized my demo had ran out, and I had an idea... (We will most likely still buy BRU PE because it is a great program and affordable)

BUT we also have this old Power Mac G5 Tower that is just sitting around the office and hasn't been used in years. I was wondering if I could just bypass the whole Mac OS X's no native tape support problem entirely by installing and running a LINUX operation system on this Mac Tower and using it to interact with these TAR tapes.

I use LTO5, I have a Tandberg HH Drive. With my other Mac systems I connect the drives with a Promise Technology SANlink Fibre to Thunderbolt adapter but since the G5 tower does not have thunderbolt, I may need to get a Fibre HBA.

So is this a possibility?? And does anyone have any advice on what type of OS would be compatible and work for this?

Thanks!!


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Considering running Linux on old Mac in order to interact with TAR LTO tapes
on Apr 30, 2015 at 2:43:34 am

Good luck finding PCIx cards for the G5 - as you may have forgotten, PCIe cards won't work in a G5. And, you're gonna have a heck of time finding drivers for the G5 that will work under Linux as well.

David Roth Weiss
Director/Editor/Colorist
David Weiss Productions


David is a Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Apple Final Cut Pro forum.


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Tim Jones
Re: Considering running Linux on old Mac in order to interact with TAR LTO tapes
on Apr 30, 2015 at 4:30:02 am
Last Edited By Tim Jones on Apr 30, 2015 at 4:31:52 am

I'll have to second David's comments. The best that you could do is an old ATTO ExpressPCI UL4D and a pSCSI LTO-4 drive. Nothing newer than LTO-4 is available in pSCSI, so as they say - you can't get there from here.

However, if you could find an old MP 1,1 or 2,1, you could run an x86 Linux there AND add an ATTO or HighPoint 2722 SAS HBA to get into the realm of LTO-5 and 6.

I just wish that VMWare would come up with a way to pass through these devices like you can under ESX Server so that the guest OS could use the SAS drives.

Tim
--
Tim Jones
CTO - TOLIS Group, Inc.
http://www.tolisgroup.com
BRU ... because it's the RESTORE that matters!


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Logan Roeth
Re: Considering running Linux on old Mac in order to interact with TAR LTO tapes
on Apr 30, 2015 at 4:41:25 am

Thanks for the responses, guys. I really hadn't done much research into it yet but I am now realizing that it probably won't be possible. And we will most likely be buying TTT Tim, thanks. :)


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Martin Greenwood
Re: Considering running Linux on old Mac in order to interact with TAR LTO tapes
on Apr 30, 2015 at 10:57:44 am

Hi Logan,

Using LTO and Linux on a G5 Mac does sound like a hardware and software challenge !

At the recent NAB we showed a free update to our YoYottaID LTFS software product that supports reading TAR from LTO tapes. This allows easy restore or migration to LTFS for older tapes. Your LTO5 drive would read LTO 3, 4 and 5 archives. The appropriate adaptor would allow you to interface any Mac to the LTO5 drive.

I will send you more details.

Best,

Martin Greenwood
CTO
YoYotta


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