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Starting at the top leaves you no place to go but down, but that just might be what intelligent storage pioneer MaXXan Systems hoped to accomplish.
MaXXan this week took the wraps off its MXV250 intelligent SAN switch for midrange IT environments, a scaled-down version of the start-up's high-end MXV500 that sells for about a third less. The integrated switch, server and applications come ready to use for network-based disaster recovery, storage consolidation, disk-based backup and NAS solutions with centralized management.
Starting at the high end gave the company the cache it needed to sell into the midrange, according to Arun Taneja, founder and consulting analyst at the Taneja Group.
"A large switch was a technology-proving, credibility-gaining product for MaXXan, but I suspect it did not deliver much revenue," Taneja told Enterprise Storage Forum. "A midrange director should do much better, especially with existing customers."
MaXXan has shipped about two dozen MXV500s to date, according to the company.
The MXV250 combines a director-class 16- to 64-port Fibre Channel switching environment with FalconStor's IPStor software suite and the MaXXan SANCruiser management software. Its modular design allows customers to scale from small to midrange environments and implement only the advanced storage applications they need while maintaining a single point of management control.
"Midrange IT environments have the same requirements for deploying and managing mission-critical storage solutions as larger data centers," stated Ravi Chalaka, MaXXan's vice president of marketing. "The MXV250 is directly addressing the needs of this market by delivering fully integrated, tested and supported disaster recovery, storage consolidation, disk-based backup and NAS solutions with a modular SAN switch."
Nancy Hurley, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group, sees MaXXan's offering as just the thing for a market segment that wants better storage services without the cost and complexity of director-class switches.
"MaXXan is addressing this issue by providing a cost-effective, midrange SAN storage solution with integrated storage applications," said Hurley. "Mid-sized organizations and even enterprise organizations that need to more effectively manage data at remote sites can benefit from the adoption of MaXXan solutions."
The MXV250 is based on the same intelligent switch architecture as the high-end MXV500 platform. The integrated IPStor software offers options such as remote replication, virtualization, synchronous and asynchronous mirroring, snapshot, point-in-time copy and NAS. MaXXan says all network applications are administered through an easy-to-use console, optimizing storage utilization and provisioning and enabling data migration throughout the enterprise without downtime.
The MXV250 will be generally available in June. Pricing depends on configuration. For an MXV250 intelligent SAN switch configured with 32 ports and virtualization functionality, list price is $59,000. By comparison, the price for the basic configuration of the MXV500, with 48 ports and virtualization functionality, is $89,000