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Optical Storage Industry Achieves 9.1GB Goal

The Optical Storage Technology Association (OSTA) today reported that the next major milestone on its 5.25-inch Magneto-Optical (MO) technology roadmap has been realized. With shipments of 9GB (14X) MO products that began early this year, the industry group claims it has continued to deliver on its targeted backward-compatible capacity migration path critical to high-performance archival storage applications as well as many e-commerce and Internet applications.

According to the OSTA, by integrating this new high-capacity MO solution into automated storage products -- jukeboxes and libraries -- quickly-accessible storage capacities of multiple terabytes are easily achieved. The 9.1 GB technology -- now supported by numerous suppliers including DISC, Hewlett-Packard, Maxell, Maxoptix, Plasmon, Sony, and Verbatim, as well as multiple applications software suppliers -- has made great strides in regards to capacity and performance over the previous generation 5.2GB (8X) products, which first appeared on the market in 1998.

In addition, the technology provides full backward read compatibility with all previous 5.25-inch MO disk capacities, and full read/write compatibility with both 5.2GB and 2.6GB disks. The 9.1GB technology is expected to become a European Computer Manufacturers Association (ECMA) standard in the summer of 2001.