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File virtualization: Where it is now; EMC integrates replication tools into Exchange 2010

Headlines: Experts question whether file virtualization is in transition or decline; EMC integrates RecoverPoint, MirrorView and Replication Manager with Microsoft's native tools for Exchange 2010 failover and DR.

Storage channel news roundup for March 18 to 24, 2010

File virtualization: Where it is now

A few years back, file virtualization was seen as a hot technology that could help organizations manage NAS sprawl. But most of the vendors from that market have faded from view, leaving industry experts to question whether file virtualization is a technology in decline or merely in transition.

File virtualization products are software-based tools, although sometimes delivered as appliances. Their original goal was to provide scale-out manageability of multiple traditional NAS systems by layering a third-party's global namespace over existing NAS nodes. In 2006, file virtualization topped market research firm TheInfoPro's annual survey of "hot technologies" among Fortune 1000 companies.

File virtualization products are still on the market, particularly F5 Networks' ARX switch that F5 acquired by buying startup Acopia Networks in 2007. But other file virtualization players that entered the market with Acopia, including NeoPath Networks and Attune Networks, have vanished.

Read the full story on file virtualization.

EMC integrates replication tools into Exchange 2010

EMC Corp. has integrated its data replication tools with Microsoft Corp.'s API for Exchange 2010, allowing customers to run Exchange 2010's native local failover with EMC's synchronous replication software and manage Exchange 2010 replication alongside storage area network (SAN)-based tools.

Read this tip on choosing between hardware vs. host vs. backup replication.

SMBs eye cloud services for data compliance, e-discovery

SMBs facing e-discovery requirements are beginning to use cloud storage services and other Software as a Service (SaaS) offerings for data compliance needs such as email and collaboration, experts say.

Many SMBs outsource base systems such as email and customer relationship management (CRM) to SaaS providers as their first online services because of potentially large cost savings and infrastructure flexibility, said Ed Laczynski, CTO of LTech Consulting LLC, a Bridgewater, NJ-based cloud service provider and consulting firm.

"More often than not they are looking for an on-ramp to the cloud," Laczynski said.

Read the rest of this story on SMB use of cloud storage services and then read this tip on how to participate in the cloud data backup market.

SteelEye replication tool gets certified for Windows Server 2008 R2

SteelEye Technology Inc. announced that its DataKeeper product has completed Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2 certification.

The SteelEye DataKeeper is a data replication tool that performs multi-site clustering, which enables automatic failover across different geographic locations. Multi-site clustering eliminates the need for a storage area network (SAN). SAN systems only have a single point of failure, often making cluster nodes unavailable if the system fails or is down.

Read the rest of the story on DataKeeper's certification.

Digitiliti launches archiving system for SMBs

Digitiliti Inc. launched a data management and data archiving system for small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) and small enterprises called DigiLibe, which provides data reduction, security and compliance features.

DigiLibe represents a new direction for Digitiliti. Until now, the St. Paul, Minn.-based company has served as a data backup service provider using Asigra software. It is following the lead of ROBObak, a former Asigra service provider that developed its own backup software two years go. But while Digitiliti has developed its own software to power DigiLibe, it still uses Asigra for its DigiBak backup service.

Read this tip on the approaches to data reduction for disk archiving: hardware vs. software.

Veeam demonstrates automated backup testing for VMware

VMware data backup software vendor Veeam Inc. is previewing a utility for its Backup and Replication 5 software due out in June that lets customers automate backup verification testing and perform granular object restores from snapshot VMware backups.

Backup and Replication works by taking a snapshot of a VMware virtual machine, then backing up only changed blocks stored in a proprietary compressed file format. Doug Hazelman, director of Veeam's global systems engineering group, said Veeam is currently working to patent a new process that will allow customers to publish that compressed backup file as a Data Store for a VMware virtual machine, and run VMware instances directly from a backup file.

Read this tip on VM-specific software vs. traditional enterprise data backup software.

Additional storage news

Check out last week's storage channel news roundup.

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