CURRENT VERSION: 188.8.131.527
Updated March 30, 2020
ArGest® Backup from TOLIS Group provides its users a fast, easy, drag-and-drop asset
backup/archival and restore solution, natively supporting Windows, Linux, and macOS with fully cross platform compatible backup and archival.
Whether you are using removable disk storage such as RDX, cloud based storage pools, local cloud storage, and tape media, ArGest® Backup has you covered.
The restore of BRU™ archives are ALWAYS free for your clients or partners, on ANY operating system BRU supports.
September 12, 2019 - UPDATED Janaury 3, 2019, macOS 10.15 Catalina notice
If you update to Apple's macOS version 10.15 Catalina on mission critical systems where you are using tools like BRU™ to perform data backup operations, you must be licensed for and using ArGest® Backup v4.x or BRU Server v2.0.6. If you do not have a license for either of those products, please contact BRU Sales to determine your upgrade eligibility. Also, please back up your BRU™ software environment before updating to 10.15. BRU PE™ v 3.x or earlier and BRU Server™ v2.0.5 or earlier are not comaptible with 10.15.
About ArGest® Backup
Options and Pricing
BRU, LTFS, and tar formats
ArGest® Backup provides three levels of licensing:
Desktop Edition™ - Supporting a Single standalone tape drive and disk-based backup
The Desktop Edition license is designed for personal or small one to two person shops where backup operations can be performed in more manageable segments where full and incremental data coverage fits on one or two tapes or can be safely stored on a removable disk or device such as the Overland/Tandberg RDX.
Workstation Edition™ - Supporting 1 or 2 LTO tape drives or a single autoloader/library with up to 24 slots (50 with the slot expansion license)
The Workstation Edition™ license adds multi-drive support for Doubler Mode™ and support for a tape library of 8 to 50 slots (with the slot expansion license), making the management of many terabytes of data in a backup or archival operation much more hands-free with automatic changing and spanning of multiple tapes.
Producer's Edition™ - For those with BRU™ Producer's Edition v2.x or 3.x, this is the 4.x version of PE. Supporting 1 or 2 tape drives or a single autoloader/library with up to 24 slots (50 with the slot expansion license), while also adding features to support the workflow and archival requirements of the Media and Entertainment industry. All of the features previously available in our BRU™ PE product family have been included when purchasing the ArGest® Backup Producer's Edition™ license.
The Producer's Edition™ license functionality was defined with input from industry pros to assure pertinence to the film, TV and recording industries. Content producers, such as film and music recording engineers, editors, and graphics and VFX designers, regardless of their computer technical knowledge, can use the Producer's Edition™ features effectively and with confidence from the very start.
The Producer's Edition™ license integrates industry-essential features such as automated asset gathering for applications such as FCP X, Adobe Premier Pro CS6/CC, and others, as well as providing drag and drop backup and restore using CMX3600 EDL files (with the EDL add on license), and exported XML project files. Studio and production detail metadata is tracked on a per job basis and provides an easily scannable QR code for media management. Doubler Mode™ provides simultaneous creation of both archives and client deliverables.
Film, broadcast, music industry professionals now have a reliable, flexible, and easy-to-use solution to protect key creative digital assets regardless of their level of computer technical knowledge. ArGest® Backup Producer's Edition™ also delivers a clear and easy-to-follow workflow for photographers and graphic designers as well.
ArGest® Backup is available as software only or bundled with TOLIS Group's ArGest® standalone LTO or automation LTO tape backup and archival solutions for a single source of purchase, help, and warranty services. Looking for expandable disk storage or do you need an all-in-one edit and archival solution? Add disk storage to any 1 drive Cube or Desktop Standalone model to make it a Mobile Editing unit!
ArGest® Backup supports macOS 10.11 through 10.15 (Catalina), Windows 7, 8.1, and 10, and 64 bit Linux with GTK3.
What makes BRU™ better than all other solutions?
Speed. BRU™ is the fastest software available. Streaming SAS LTO-7 and LTO-8 at 322MB/sec (see more details about achieving this LTO-7/LTO-8 speed) and LTO-6 at over 160MB/sec with ArGest® hardware, BRU™ software. Even better performance and lower latency is seen with BRU and Fibre Channel LTO-7 and LTO-8 tape.
True cross platform recoverability. All BRU™ archives are verifiable at any time and FREE to restore on any OS BRU™ supports (there are currently 24 of those).
Verifiability and error recovery for restore. BRU™ archives are properly and fully verifiable on any OS BRU™ supports at any time, and is the only backup tool that can recover from errors. And if your archive spans multiple tapes, and you lose a tape to damage or theft, BRU™ will restore all the rest of the data from all the tapes you have, something no other product will do.
Accountability. With BRU™, you have a source for help and a company that has been committed to data backup and restore since 1985.
Flexibility. ArGest® Backup supports almost all standalone tape devices and libraries of up to 2 drives up to 50 tape slots, VTL, and disk storage out of the box (for larger libraries, please visit our ArGest® BRU Server™ product).
Special needs. All special characters, EDLs, ACLs, special attributes, permissions, and foreign language characters (including left to right languages) are correctly handled by BRU™.
ArGest® Backup Features at a Glance
ArGest® Backup's Producer's Edition™ license support for Final Cut Pro X providing one-click selection of all FCP X assets (projects and events or new library bundles), Motion generators and templates, and FxPlug plugins. This feature will also track referenced files and automatically include them in the archive created
ArGest® Backup's Producer's Edition™ license support for drag and drop of FCP X .fcpxml files for both archival and restore selections.
ArGest® Backup's Producer's Edition™ license support for drag and drop of CMX3600 EDL files for both archival and restore selection (additional license unlock required)
Support for disk, cloud, standalone tape, small autoloaders and libraries of up to 24 tape slots, mid-range tape libraries supporting up to 50 slots (additional 50 slot unlock license required).
Supported Tape Devices
ArGest® Backup's Producer's Edition™ license support of studio / production detail XML file creation that includes generation of QR Code labels for archive set tape storage. This XML file contains the details about a production that major studios require for deliverables
Identify currently loaded tape feature identifies the currently loaded tape with single click identification
Are you looking to create two identical copies of the same data? Doubler Mode™ (Workstation™ or Producer's Edition™ license) was built just for that purpose. Using either 2 standalone drives or a two drive library such as the TOLIS Group TGL2240, you select Doubler Mode™, load 2 new tapes, and click "Start Archive". BRU™ will execute two archival operations simultaneously providing you with onsite and offsite sets, or an internal and client deliverable copy in one easy process.
In addition to its native BRU™ archive data format, ArGest® Backup's Workstation or Producer's Edition™ license also provide tools necessary for dealing with tar and LTFS volumes on your system. Because a macOS system cannot read or restore from tar tapes natively, ArGest® Backup's Workstation or Producer's Edition™ license includes the full TOLIS Tape Tools license which allows for the reading and restore of tar tapes on the macOS platform.
The ArGest® Backup Workstation or Producer's Edition™ license LTFS import component allows you to import LTFS tapes into the ArGest® Backup catalog environment for easier management of archives by allowing the operator to search known LTFS tapes even if the LTFS tapes are not currently mounted on the system used for archive management.
Create tape set collections designed for delivery to other departments, clients, or vaulting services. The BRUsetta Stone™ CD/DVD/IMG/USB makes it easy to provide everything that the recipient needs to recover the tapes provided - including a copy of the BRU™ software, the catalog information for the tapes, and any other digital data that you need to provide (invoices, special contact instructions, scripts, the "wrap book" in digital format, etc.).
Easy and intuitive Drag-and-Drop functionality for drives, folders, files, and session files from various major applications
Users of the ArGest® Backup Producer's Edition™ license can simply drag-and-drop session files, volumes, or folders into the ArGest® Backup interface environment for easy creation of the archives. Applications currently supported by this functionality include: Adobe Premiere Pro CS6, Sonic Studio™, Logic® Pro X, Final Cut Pro® 7.0 – X, Soundtrack Pro®, ProTools® 7.4 and newer and select others.
Split Session™ Archive mode - allows better utilization of media by easily combining multiple data sets onto a single tape set while keeping them as separate entities for easier management and recovery with a single operation
Read and write I/O performance of over 500MB/sec with standard 6Gb SAS arrays - this means that driving 2 LTO-6 drives at full 160MB/sec+ per drive performance won't overtax your systems. LTO-7 and LTO-8 SAS speed dependent on SAS layer, disk speed, system type.
Generate PDF or printed versions of your tape set catalog information for your project's wrap book. Easily select an archive or a tape set and create a full listing of the data included with your own custom cover image.
Completely tested and compatible with all versions of macOS from 10.11 through 10.15 Catalina, Windows 7, 8.1, and 10, and 64 bit Linux with GTK3
Doesn't require a new system to perform archive operations - with Thunderbolt support, you can even use your Mac Book Air!
Compatible with all tape drive types - LTO, DAT, DLT and others using SAS, Fibre Channel, pSCSI, USB, and Thunderbolt (with bridge).
BRU™ media is fully cross platform compatible - Linux, Windows, Solaris, and many other systems can restore data written with BRU™ on a macOS, Linux, or Windows system.
Ability to provide free-form job metadata as defined by the operator - saved as standard XML for easy external parsing
Performance and Speed
High performance tape drive I/O support provides the highest levels of throughput to high-performance devices such as LTO, SAIT, SDLT, and others.
BRU™ is the fastest software available. Streaming SAS LTO-7 and LTO-8 at 322MB/sec (see more details about achieving this LTO-7/LTO-8 speed) and LTO-6 at over 160MB/sec with ArGest® hardware, BRU™ software. Even better performance and lower latency is seen with BRU™ and Fibre Channel LTO-7 and LTO-8 tape.
Industry's shortest backup window (fully verified backups) by using Disk Staging and ArGest® BRU Server's™ zero impact verify (Anytime Verify™) data verification
Low overhead allows multiple BRU™ processes to write to multiple storage devices simultaneously with very little impact on system performance.
Intelligent cataloging provides a powerful query capability to quickly recover select files contained in archives.
Client system backups are not interleaved, thereby further shortening the time to restore selected files.
Ultra-reliable BRU™ engine delivers unparalleled data protection reliability and restorability of the protected data
Unparalleled error recovery algorithms–if a bad bit is detected on your media, BRU™ advances in 2K increments until it can read and restore the data once again without aborting your restore.
Backups can be 100% verified without access to the original file systems, either immediately after a backup or even years later. See more about verification with our white paper Reliable Verification with BRU.
Verification and free restorability are available with any version of BRU™ regardless of the OS they were created on. BRU™ is fully backwards compatible, and unlike other tools, BRU™ will never leave you with archives tied to a data set, specific OS, version, or type of hardware.
Anytime Verify™ and Inspect Mode backup verification options can be run as a zero impact process, freeing up the client systems faster.
Broad compatibility - backups can be verified and restored on a different system, and even on a different platform
Backups can be committed to a disk staging area at primary storage subsystem performance levels - virtually eliminating perceived backup windows at the client system level
Proven data restorability of BRU™ technology - corrupt data is reported, circumvented, and the restore continues unless the tape drive is physically unable to proceed
Catalogs copied to tape in addition to the server HDD to provide enhanced availability to backup data should the server system HDD fail.
Sharing/Restoring BRU™ Archives is FREE for Your Clients or Partners
Sharing archives with your clients or partners is easy, and always FREE for them to restore, all they need to do is download the BRU™ demo, and the restore function of the demo never expires!
The BRUsetta Stone™ CD/DVD/IMG feature makes it easy to provide everything that the recipient needs to recover the tapes provided - including a copy of the BRU™ software for restore, the catalog information for the tapes, and any other digital data that you need to provide (invoices, special contact instructions, scripts, the "wrap book" in digital format, etc.).
ArGest® Backup QR Code XML Report
ArGest® Backup Producer's Edition™ license provides the entry of studio and production detail metadata. This metadata is used in the generation of a printable QR Code label that makes locating tape sets as easy as scanning with your smartphone.
No Interdependencies on Data Sets for Restore
There are no dependency constraints between full, incremental or differential archives when performing restore operations. Each BRU™ archive is a complete and separate entity from other archives. Thus, it is not required to have the full archive on-site in order to restore from an incremental or differential backup.
When performing backup operations, once a full backup is completed, the full backup does not need to be on-site in order to perform incremental or differential backups. This allows you to free up slots inside of your tape library or change hard disks for offsite storage.
Restore is as easy as a single click for file, folder, directory, etc...and ArGest® Backup's tape based Quick File Access (QFA) and fast search mechanism can find and restore these files fast.
Choosing ArGest® Backup Software, ArGest® BRU Server™ Software,
or Using Both Together
ArGest® Backup is designed for drag and drop, hands on operations to disk or tape. Doubler Mode™ (Workstation or Producer's Edition) allows the creation of two simultaneous copies of identical data to two tape devices in a single process for ease of creating a client copy and your own for the vault. ArGest® Backup is limited to two tape drives (either standalone or in a single library) and up to 50 tape slots in a single attached library.
ArGest® BRU Server™ is designed for hands-off, scheduled backup/archival and DAM/MAM integration. ArGest® BRU Server™ also allows for not only the copy of identical data to two or more drives by supporting an unlimited number of drives and tape slots in tape libraries, and also allows for different data to be backed up/archived simultaneously, or perform a restore from one or more drives while backing up to another.
ArGest® BRU Server™ and ArGest® Backup can co-exist with each other on the same system, or on different systems in your environment. Many users choose to use ArGest® Backup at the desktop or creative individual's system(s) and ArGest® BRU Server™ for the day to day business backup/archival/restore.
Support for Avid and Other Media Specific Storage Solutions
Regardless of the filesystem or storage connection type, if your operating system can read and write the files in your storage environment all BRU™ solutions will properly backup and restore the media data stored on those storage systems.
BRU™ solutions will support all special attributes, naming conventions, metadata, and application specific typing for both backup and restore.
BRU™ also acts as an early warning tool. When the storage subsystem is having filesystem corruption or errors that other applications ignore or don't report, BRU™ does. This is because of the way BRU™ solutions interface with the actual filesystem data. BRU™ will report these issues and often identify previously undiagnosed problems with your storage environment that would otherwise not be recognized until it was too late.
Digital Asset Management and Media Asset Management (DAM/MAM) is provided by TOLIS Group's ArGest® BRU Server™ software and available hardware options.
For more information regarding ArGest® BRU Server™ software, please visit our ArGest® BRU Server™ software information.
For more information regarding ArGest® BRU Server™ DAM/MAM solutions please visit our ArGest® DAM/MAM page.
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ArGest® Backup Producer's Edition™ QR Code Generation
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ArGest® Backup Product Videos
Visit our Product videos at our Product Videos page, or visit our YouTube channel for all TOLIS Group Videos
Supported formats. Out of the box, included Workstation™ and Producer's Edition™ archival formats are the BRU format, tar format (for tar restore and tar creation), and LTFS format (for restore and archive creation).
Best Business Practices. All BRU™ products are fully compliant with best business security practices including those mandated by Sarbanes-Oxley.
Bottom Line. ArGest® Backup™ delivers an unmatched ease of use, speed, true cross platform restorability, and all archive formats in use in the personal desktop to the creative space. Download your fully functional 30 day demo here.
Purchasing Licenses for ArGest® Backup
ArGest® Backup is licensed on a single system basis. Should you wish to run ArGest® Backup for archiving/backup purposes on multiple systems, or to use a single ArGest tape or disk bundle that is to be shared between multiple systems, additional licenses of the ArGest® Backup software must be purchased –one license for each machine you intend to use for archiving/backup purposes.
Restore is always a free process, and is simply done through the demo (the restore functionality never expires).
For customers using a mix of ArGest® Backup and ArGest® BRU Server, the softwares can co-exist on the same system if needed. Many customers choose to use ArGest® Backup Producer's Edition on their edit stations and ArGest® BRU Server for their day-to-day company backups.
ArGest® Backup backs up/archives an unlimited amount of data with no additional fees. ArGest® Backup works with existing hardware or cloud services and is also available bundled with tape and disk storage hardware in TOLIS Group's ArGest® Hardware/software options.
Specify macOS, Linux, or Windows when
ordering by adding M, L, or W at end of
the part# - for example ArGest® Backup Producer's Edition for Windows would be part#
Pricing subject to occasional changes, please call 1-480-505-0488 or email email@example.com for your customized quote.
Ready to order? Pick the part # desired and Buy Now! TOLIS Group accepts Visa and MasterCard.
How to choose which tape format to use when using ArGest® Backup
In order to meet all needs for sharing data and archiving in the creative space, in addition to its native BRU™ archive data format, ArGest® Backup Workstation or Producer's Edition™ provides the tools necessary for dealing with tar and LTFS volumes. Because a Mac system cannot read or restore from tar tapes natively, ArGest® Backup Workstation and Producer's Edition™ includes the full TOLIS Tape Tools license which allows for the reading and restore of tar tapes on the macOS platform. ArGest® Backup’s LTFS import component allows you to import LTFS tapes into the ArGest® Backup catalog environment for easier management of archives by allowing the operator to search known LTFS tapes even if the LTFS tapes are not currently mounted on the system used for archive management.
When deciding which format to use, it is important to note that only the BRU™ format delivers the speed, reliability of verification, and long term storage options that you should expect and demand from your solution format. BRU's restore is always free for you and your clients, therefore sharing BRU™ archives should never be an issue with you or your partners.
Regarding LTFS, it is important to separate the marketing information vs. the reality of its use. It is important to note that even though ArGest® Backup Workstation and Producer's Edition supports LTFS import/tape creation, BRU's capabilities and features DO NOT apply to the LTFS layer. Because LTFS is not a TOLIS Group developed product, TOLIS Group does not provide support for LTFS aside from the ability to utilize the already existing and functioning LTFS tools that you have currently installed on your system within our LTFS Manager panel (ArGest® Backup's LTFS manager is simply a GUI to enable the formatting, mounting, checking, roll-back, and cataloging of LTFS volumes using the currently existing LTFS capabilities). As with all Open Source Software, the LTFS code is provided with no warranty, express nor implied, regarding its functionality or usefulness for a particular purpose. Refer to the GPLv2 LICENSE file that should have been included with your LTFS package for further information.
For more information about what the LTFS format is and its origins, please visit our LTFS white paper.
For an easy to follow comparison of the BRU™ format and the LTFS format, a table below provides an easy to follow comparison based upon published specifications instead of marketing hype.
Click to expand BRU™ format vs LTFS format table
Easy to Install
One point of support
Versions of macOS supported
Versions of Linux supported
Versions of Windows supported
Other platforms supported
Dependence on 3rd party drivers
Automatically Spans tapes
Automatically handles verification
Supports Special Characters
Supports long Length File/path names
Supports File Permissions
Search Tape Content of offline tapes
Easy Catalog Sharing and Administration
Supports non-LTO Tape Devices
(LTO-3/4, SAIT, T10000B/C, etc)
Supports Multiple, Simultaneous
Tape Write Operations
Supports WORM (Write Once, Read Many) media for protected archival
Native support for large scale tape libraries
Finder or Explorer Access
Issues when expanding tape contents
Easy to use Graphical Interface
Full Drive Performance
Easily restore from aborted tapes
Low impact system support for
multiple, simultaneous volume creation
Full, descriptive error and warning
reports during read and write operations
Years of providing Archival and Backup
ALL including non-Intel
7, 8, 9, 10
Solaris, IRIX, FreeBSD HP-UX, A/IX, 11 others
TOLIS Group, Inc.
32, since 1985
3 (dependent on vendor implementation*)
3 Packages, multiple, conflicting options
10.6-10.15 depending on the drivers installed
Restricted to Intel platforms and by kernel version
Varies by drive vendor, check your source
FuSE (version specific), ICU
Dependant on data access
No one is directly responsible
* Vendor implementation splintering in driver development has resulted in situations where Vendor A may not be able to read a tape generated by Vendor C, even on the same platform.
** There are third party wrapper applications that expand upon the base LTFS cataloging restrictions and provide graphical UIs, but these packages are neither free nor open source.
*** Because of the splintering of the driver developers, FuSE implementations, and fragility of the LTFS tape format in light of a drive or system failure, many customers have reported that the LTFS volumes are not as reliable as expected.
****A note about Open Source.
If you break LTFS, who do you call? With BRU™, you call us and we get you back on track. As for being open source, anyone can get the spec and base source and create their own version of LTFS. This results in the "too many cooks in the kitchen" scenario.
As for having the code available under an open source license, are you a low-level C programmer? Do you have the skill set and tape hardware knowledge to take on the responsibility for the LTFS code in your organization? A very important question to consider before you let the "concept" of open source seem to be a positive (for any solution, not just LTFS).
As an example, since Linux is Open Source and freely available, are you replacing your macOS and Windows systems with Linux systems because macOS and Windows are "closed source"?
It all sounds great in discussion, but in practical application, you want to use tools that provide the best solution for your task. You also want to be able to depend on the solution and the team(s) responsible for that solution. To revisit, who do you call if your open source product doesn't work?
Okay, so what if TOLIS Group goes out of business? We've placed the BRU™ source code in escrow with many of our major clients and offer it to others if their dependence on the actual product is that strictly regulated. The result is that in this case, the source code would be available to those organizations for continued development. Or, what if the principles decide they'd rather go fishing (or racing) than continue the business? In that case, we have a clause in our corporate structure where we would release the source code under the BSD open source license to the world.
How do you share BRU™ archives? By providing your client with the BRU DEMO for their system. Restore is ALWAYS free and never expires in the DEMO, no purchase necessary.
So, either way, TOLIS Group customers and BRU users are protected into the foreseeable future.
Wouldn't you rather relax at night knowing that your data is safely archived and that help is just an email or phone call away if something gets sideways?
Remember our slogan - BRU™ ... Because it's the RESTORE that matters[sm]!
Click the following links below to download the PDF documentation appropriate for your needs.
If you need assistance beyond what is found in the documentation for ArGest® Backup, please visit TOLIS Group's support page for methods of contacting technical support directly.
Instructions from download, to install, to first backup, to first restore. Includes QuickStart Guide.
User Guide for the included TOLIS Tape Tools license (located in the PE IMG in your applications folder).
The ArGest® Backup Producer's Edition™ catalog, how it is formatted and tips on how to utilize the information outside of ArGest® Backup.
General BRU White Papers:
The BRU Advantage - Details on the elements that make BRU so effective.
Proving the BRU Advantage - BRU was originally developed because tar fails–see why.
BRU's Unique Availability Characteristics - More details about BRU's unique features.
Reliable Verification - Don't be fooled by foolish verification methods.
LTO — Big, Fast, and Cheap - TOLIS Group is pro-tape, see why.
Tape's Not Dead Tech - Tape is not a dead tech, it is fast, easy to use, and nothing else will protect your stored data as effectively for as long.
BRU Server and Parallels - How BRU and virtual environments such as Parallels and VMWare work together.
Virtual Machines and BRU - Workflow details on using BRU in a virtual machine environment.
TOLIS Group OFM for Live System Backup - BRU backs up open files and databases on Windows.
BRU's Support of Regulatory Governance - BRU ihelps you maintain compliance with government/research/medical regulations for backing up and recovering data.
Implementing Tape Storage on Apple Systems - Special considerations when using tape with Apple systems.
Tape vs. Disk vs. VTL Backup Options - BRU allows you to back up to any device type that works for your environment.
LTFS - One look at why LTFS is not the best choice for long term archival.
Case Study: Austrian Film Museum - Why the Austrian Film Museum chose BRU to protect their irreplaceable assets.
Tape Device Fibre Channel Zoning Considerations - Zoning Fibre Channel Devices, older document, still valid in 2016.
Instructions from download, to install, to first backup, to first restore. Includes QuickStart Guide.
User guide for older 2.x version of PE.
Any guidance or direction TOLIS Group provides to you will only be based on the information provided by you to us as our customer. Many factors in your environment are unknown to TOLIS Group and can affect advice, problems, outcomes, or recommended solutions. TOLIS Group cannot and will not accept any culpability or responsibility due to potential omissions. Also, be advised that technology changes. As a result of these changes in technology, products you are using might be affected both directly and indirectly. TOLIS Group cannot and will not be responsible or liable for any consequences that can occur due to any change in technology, or in conjunction with the use of information provided by TOLIS Group under these circumstances. Proceeding with communications, orders, and interactions between yourself and TOLIS Group is indication that you understand and agree with this statement. For complete warranty, legal, and return policy notices, please visit http://www.tolisgroup.com/brulegal.html
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