Each time a tape is mounted, Canister will create a Catalog for it. Canister Catalogs are special folders containing tiny stubs for each file on your tape, and mount as a read-only virtual drive each time Canister opens.

When Canister is open, all Catalogs are available as a virtual drive called LTO Archive. Since a driver installation is required, Canister will prompt you for the install. If not, download the installer directly from our servers. To access catalogs without a virtual drive, Alt-Click the Catalog icon in Canister (top-right).

Catalogs live in Finder so you can utilize all the power of Finder's search. Just hit Command-F and be sure to select "LTO Archive" as the scope. Pro-tip for online/offline workflows: use Smart Folders.

Canister creates a Catalog when mounting a tape and updates it after each Archive. Old Catalogs are moved into a hidden folder named LTO Tape (serial).history, essentially archiving them as well.
To see previous generations of your Catalogs, enable Show Hidden Files in Finder with the shortcut Shift-Command-.

To clean up the Catalog, or remove for instance test entries, you can open the original location where the stubs are saved by Alt/Option-Clicking the Catalog icon in Canister. This will open Finder in ~/Library/Application\ Support/Canister/Catalogs.

Due to the typically large amount of files in a catalog, it's best not to just copy catalogs but to archive them first, without applying compression.
Run this command in Terminal, and it will create an archive on your desktop:
tar -cvzf ~/Desktop/catalogs.tar.gz ~/Library/Application\ Support/Canister/Catalogs
You can copy this archive to a new machine, then unpack it with a free app like Unarchiver.

Currently, it's not possible to use Catalogs to tell Canister which files to retrieve. This feature is on the roadmap, together with EDL support.
Copy link
On this page
The LTO Archive
Searching Catalogs
Catalog History
Editing and removing Catalogs
Migrating Catalogs
Retrieving files using Catalogs