half-inch tape


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal.

half-inch tape

The width of the digital magnetic tape that became popular in the 1950s. Much more convenient and holding more data, half-inch self-threading tape cartridges began to replace open reels in the mid-1980s (see tape cartridge).

Although storage capacity was limited to little more than a couple hundred megabytes per reel, a few legacy information systems using open reel tapes survived into the 21st century. See open reel, magnetic tape and track.


The Half-Inch Open Reel
Practically extinct today, half-inch open reels were the common means of computer storage from the 1950s to the 1980s.
References in periodicals archive ?
In enterprise storage, linear recording is the dominant format in all half-inch tape technologies, including DLT, 9840, 3480/90, and 3590, as well as the 8mm 3570.