Top Ten Storage Appliances
Not so long ago, a storage appliance was a novel concept. Nowadays, there are dozens, perhaps hundreds of them. According to Gartner, the purpose-built backup appliance (PBBA) market alone will see revenue growth of 19 percent per year through 2016. But there are appliances in many other areas of storage, too.
Here are some of the good ones.
Data Domain DD160
EMC Data Domain sells a wide range of deduplication appliances. The Data Domain DD160 deduplication storage system is the entry-level product, allowing users to address their data protection needs on a consolidated platform. It includes support for most backup and archive applications, as well as integration with EMC Avamar and EMC NetWorker. Adding another DD160 remotely gives you and network-based replication for DR. List price starts at $10,000.
“Disk-based backup appliances with deduplication originally caught on so strongly because they were simple to implement and immediately solved backup window problems that were common to all users,” said Rob Emsley, senior director product marketing, EMC Backup Recovery Systems Division.
EVault offers the EVault Plug-n-Protect Appliance and EVault Express Recovery Appliance families for backup and recovery. Consisting of pre-configured hardware, storage and software, they are designed for cloud-connected data protection. EVault Plug-n-Protect comes with cloud replication, while the EVault Express Recovery Appliance, maintains a local cache of backup data to speed data recovery.
EVault Plug-n-Protect ranges from $17,995 to $105,995. The pricing for EVault Express Recovery is dependent on the amount of storage shipped with the appliance. Pricing for the virtual edition starts at $1,595, the desktop edition (1TB) starts at $2,495 and the server edition (1TB, 3TB or 6TB) starts at $4,995.
Asigra Cloud Backup Connector Appliance
Based on the Cisco Integrated Service Router Generation 2 and installed with Asigra software for private, public or hybrid backup environments, this appliance allows users to protect all corporate data locally on the LAN and/or backup securely to a service provider's offsite data center. It includes the latest generation Asigra Cloud Backup software, which was introduced in late 2012. Recent capabilities include cloud-to-cloud backup, anytime/anywhere/any device data recovery, snapshot support and virtual machine DR.
The starting price for the Asigra Cloud Connector appliance is $2695.
The Astute ViSX family of solid state (SSD) flash-based Performance Storage Appliances provide storage I/O acceleration that co-exists with existing storage systems. Prices start at $32,000.
“The industry has tried to address the I/O bottlenecks, application and VDI performance issues impacting legacy storage by adding Flash SSDs to existing SAN and NAS devices, which is expensive and potentially disruptive,” explained Len Rosenthal, senior vice president of marketing, Astute Networks. “The co-exist appliance strategy means you plug the appliance in and move critical performance applications over to ViSX while leveraging your existing SAN for capacity.”
Gridstore’s Grid allows you to add a storage block as needed. It virtualizes the storage stack and distributes it across a grid-based architecture. It also seeks to optimize workloads through virtual controllers. These v-controllers can fine tune I/O requirements of each virtualized and non-virtualized workload.
“The Grid improves performance through direct parallel I/O, allowing for 100 percent IOPS availability that results in a 3-10x increase in IOPS performance over traditional scale-out cluster approaches,” stated Kelly Murphy, CEO of Gridstore. “It eliminates the most costly components of cluster-based storage solutions such as redundant controllers, clustering software, backplane networks and 3-way replicas.”
HP StoreOnce 2600
HP StoreOnce Backup offers federated deduplication that can be used from small branch offices up to huge DR recovery sites. There are several families, with the 2000 series being the entry level. Prices start at US $10,000 for the StoreOnce 2600.
“With deduplication, target appliances are only part of the solution,” noted Sean Kinney, director, product marketing, storage, HP. “StoreOnce offers a single technology with the deployment flexibility and common management to meet every data protection challenge simply and cost effectively.”
Avere FXT 3800
The Avere FXT 3800 is a hybrid edge filer that can tier automatically across RAM, SSD, SAS and SATA HDDs. Blocks of file data are matched to level of activity. It comes with 144 GB of RAM, 800 GB of SSD, 7.8 TB of 10k SAS HDDs, 2x 10GbE ports and 6x 1GbE ports. It can be clustered to other FXT Edge filers with scaling of up to 50 nodes. Pricing starts at $112,500.
The Sepaton S2100-ES3 Backup and Recovery Appliance PBBA with version 7.0 software includes 8Gb Fibre Channel, 1Gb Ethernet and 10Gb Ethernet connectivity. It can ingest data ingest at up to 80 TB/hour. It also features Hitachi Data Systems storage arrays and encryption of data at rest and deduplication. Pricing starts at $355,000. The encryption option is licensed separately.
“This product is designed for enterprise and government data centers,” said Mike Thompson, president and CEO, Sepaton, Inc.
Pivot3 HC-3 Healthcare Validated VDI
In conjunction with VMware, Teradici, Samsung and Imprivata, Pivot3 offers this appliance-based VDI for healthcare providers. It integrates all of the storage and server hardware, desktop virtualization software, single sign-on and authentication management software, and endpoints in an appliance model. Each Pivot3 VDI appliance can support up to 125 desktops.
“A top pain point for healthcare CIOs has been deploying and managing clinical and administrative desktops, and Pivot3’s HC-3 has the potential to reduce much of this pain,” observed Brett Waldman, an analyst at IDC.
Silver Peak Virtual Appliance.
The Silver Peak VRX-2, VRX-4 and VRX-8 virtual appliances provide data acceleration to speed the replication process. They overcome WAN bandwidth, distance and quality challenges using Silver Peak’s Virtual Acceleration Open Architecture (VXOA). The software runs on standard hypervisors, including VMware vSphere, Microsoft Hyper-V, Citrix XenServer and KVM.
The entry-level VRX-2 with a replication capacity of up to 60 GB/hr costs $2,764 per year.