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HDS adds auto-failover to USP V; HP launches multiprotocol storage

Headlines: HDS will add High Availability Manager to automate failover between USP V controllers; HP intros new block and file storage systems and gateways, new modular storage arrays, and virtualization bundle.

Storage channel news roundup for May 28-June 3, 2009

HDS adds High Availability Manager to USP V controllers

Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) Corp. last week unveiled a new software capability it will ship later this year called High Availability Manager (HAM). The software automates failover between pairs of Hitachi Data Systems' Universal Storage Platform V (USP V) controllers, and customers say it will make data migrations and upgrades easier.

HAM would be deployed with two USP V controllers attached to external storage. The front-end USP V controllers can be populated with internal storage or used as gateways to external disk. If the front-end USP Vs are populated, Hitachi Data Systems' TrueCopy replication mirrors data between the systems.

The High Availability Manager software then creates a quorum disk for system-state information using external storage. If one controller fails or needs to be taken down for maintenance, HAM coordinates the redirection of application data requests to the surviving controller while applications retain their access to data without interruption.

Hitachi Data Systems has previously been able to nondisruptively migrate data between external arrays, and has offered local and remote synchronous replication software for disaster recovery (DR) purposes, but redirecting servers between front-end USP V controllers has always been a manual process.

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HP launches Windows 2008-based multiprotocol data storage system for SMBs

Hewlett-Packard (HP) Co. last week refreshed its SMB data storage platform with two multiprotocol storage systems based on Microsoft Windows Storage Server 2008, SAS and SATA additions to its to its Modular Smart Array (MSA) platform, and a virtualization bundle to create IP SANs from ProLiant servers.

The HP StorageWorks X1000 is an iSCSI and network-attached storage (NAS) platform that replaces the HP All-in-One storage boxes. HP also introduced an X3000 gateway that performs as a NAS and iSCSI bridge into a Fibre Channel SAN or SAS array.

The X1000 uses Hewlett-Packard ProLiant server hardware, and includes HP's Automated Storage Manager management software. The X1000 comes in four models.

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Rackspace cloud storage general manager discusses the differences between private, public clouds

If you have trouble telling the difference between a private cloud and a public cloud, you're not alone. Emil Sayegh, Rackspace's general manager for cloud storage, said there's an important but poorly understood difference between the types of cloud computing available. Sayegh, who's in the process of merging the Mosso public cloud subsidiary back into Rackspace, recently spoke with about those differences and the long-term future of data storage in the cloud. We've started to hear a lot about cloud computing, but some of the terminology still seems to be confusing. What do the terms "private cloud" and "public cloud" mean from Rackspace's perspective? Is there a different target audience for private cloud vs. public cloud?

Sayegh: The two terms kind of get mashed together. To a lot of people watching this space it's kind of all a blob, it's all a cloud. For us, in a public cloud like Mosso, it's a set of computing resources shared among many people with virtualization technology that helps with securing and allocating resources.

Read the rest of the interview.

Brocade slams Cisco in SAN switching, gains in Fibre Channel director market

Brocade Communications Systems Inc. picked up more than 14% of Fibre Channel (FC) director switch market share from Cisco Systems Inc. last quarter, according to the Dell'Oro Group's "1Q09 SAN Report." The market research firm attributed Brocade's whopping gains to superior Fibre Channel switch technology and Cisco's alienating its channel partners.

Brocade pulled in more than two-thirds of the high-end Fibre Channel director market revenue and three-quarters of the overall storage area network (SAN) switch revenue in the quarter as Cisco bore the brunt of the overall 18% drop in overall FC switch revenue.

While Brocade's Fibre Channel switch sales declined 6% last quarter to $298 million, Cisco's fell 45% to $78 million. Brocade had 75.5% of the market share last quarter while Cisco's share of 19.8% was its lowest since its early days in the storage area network market.

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Quantum, NEC add to data deduplication products; FalconStor claims fastest recovery time in virtual tape libraries

Quantum Corp. and NEC Corp. of America are expanding their data deduplication capabilities for disk-based backup, less than two weeks after NetApp showed the value of the technology by saying it intends to buy market leader Data Domain for $1.5 billion.

Quantum this week unveiled the DXi2500-D data deduplication device to back up remote offices and Vision 3.0, the latest version of its management application for disk and tape libraries. NEC added content-awareness to the deduplication algorithms in its Hydrastor data backup and archiving product.

Quantum targets remote data backup

The DXi2500-D is Quantum's smallest dedupe device, a 2U box with a network-attached storage (NAS) interface designed to work with the enterprise DXi7500 to centralize backups. The DXi2500-D offers RAID 6 protection, and Quantum claims a 300 GB per hour ingest rate. The DXI2500-D, based on a Dell server, is designed for companies looking to replace tape in from three to 10 remote offices.

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6 Gbps SATA specification ratified, but role in enterprise data storage unclear

The Serial ATA International Organization (SATA-IO) last week released version 3.0 of the Serial ATA (SATA) disk drive specification, with support for 6 Gbps transfer speeds, enhancements to native command queuing (NCQ) and power management.

Besides doubling the speed of SATA from 3 Gbps, the new spec makes several improvements to Native Command Queuing (NCQ), which prioritizes commands from host systems. NCQ will support multiple data streams and it has been optimized to better deal with contention between hosts and the disk system. Hosts will have more control over drive spin-down with the 3.0 spec instead of relying the drive's internal controls to determine when to power the drive on and off.

A 6 Gbps Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) spec was also released this spring.

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Brocade revamps partner program to include IP networking line

Brocade Communications Systems last week announced a new Alliance Partner Network channel program, which now covers the company's IP networking product line in addition to its storage networking products.

The reseller program consists of four partnership levels: distributor, elite, premier and select. The company offers deal registration and said it has "extensively expanded its dedicated sales, marketing, and technical support model."

Arrow Enterprise Computing Solutions aims to help LeftHand resellers sell HP products

Hewlett-Packard acquired LeftHand Networks in late 2008, but some LeftHand resellers are still making their way to the HP fold.

Arrow Enterprise Computing Solutions recently announced a program to introduce former resellers of LeftHand Networks products to HP products and the company's PartnerONE partner program. Arrow ECS has established a dedicated transition team to provide education, training and services for the former LeftHand resellers to help with the transition to HP's channel program. Arrow ECS is a distributor for LeftHand and HP solutions.

"Arrow ECS is committed to making the transition seamless and as easy as possible for LeftHand resellers," said Andy Bratton, vice president, North American HP Group, Arrow ECS. "We look forward to helping our resellers grow their business with HP and supporting them with resources for HP LeftHand products and the full suite of HP enterprise solutions."

Resellers can gain access to Arrow ECS' resources via the company's PowerStart program, which is offered to all North American resellers when they begin selling HP products through Arrow ECS. Arrow ECS said that dozens of former LeftHand Networks resellers have completed the PowerStart program and are now HP Storage Select Authorized partners. It also said it is working with more than 100 other resellers that are in the final stages of the PowerStart program.

Additional storage news

Check out last week's storage channel news roundup here.

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