The latest installer for Windows is available here:

Preflight Checks

Setting up an LTO drive can be daunting, even for experienced users. Canister's Preflight Checks function tries to help as much as possible by conveniently linking to the relevant bits and pieces.

Upon each app start, Preflight queries WMI (Windows Management Instrumentation) for a list of compatible LTO drives. On the software side, it also helps to setup LTFS and its dependencies.

In a nutshell:

🟒 Everything green - you're good to go, and Canister will automatically continue.

🟠 Orange indicates a part of your setup is not 100% up to date, but it's fine to continue as is.

πŸ”΄ Red means your setup won't do. Preflight Checks will tell you how to resolve it, if possible.


For reference, here's a list of all drivers and dependencies that we host for Windows. We regularly update this list, so there's no need to worry about checking if they're the latest version.


A full list of compatible hardware is available here.

Each Thunderbolt-based LTO drive consists of three devices:

  1. The Thunderbolt-to-PCI board

  2. A Host Bus Adapter (or "HBA"), a device translating PCI to SCSI

  3. The LTO drive itself

Non-Thunderbolt LTO drives, connected via SAS or Fibre Channel, will connect to an HBA in an external box or as a PCI card inside your computer.

The only part of your hardware that requires a driver is the HBA.

Host Bus Adapters

Pro Tip: Device Manager can be located by searching in the Windows Start menu.

First, ensure your LTO drive is visible in Device Manager. That will require you to manually install the appropriate driver for your host bus adapter (HBA). LSI cards tend to be recognized automatically by Windows, but ATTO and Areca HBAs generally require a driver download.

Once your HBA is functioning, your LTO drive should appear in the Cassette/Tape drives list.

Installing LTFS

Installing IBM LTFS on Windows is a straightforward process. Follow the steps below in order, then reboot the system.

"I give up"

Can't get up and running? Running in circles?

It can happen and is typically an indicator of a deeper problem. The company that sold you your LTO drive and/or Host Bus Adapter should be your first line of contact, as this is about your hardware - not Canister. That said, we're happy to help if that's a dead end. Don't hesitate to contact us, and be sure to include a screenshot of Canister's Preflight Checks.

We won't give up on you πŸ‘

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