Data Domain (NASDAQ: DDUP) is giving users of its data storage de-duplication technology a free upgrade in the form of a new operating system.
The new OS can speed data backup throughput of the company's dedupe appliances by 50 percent to 100 percent, Data Domain claims.
"All they have to do is move to the new operating system and they can see significant performance improvement," said Beth White, Data Domain's marketing vice president.
The upgrade is free for users with a current support contract.
Data Domain co-founder and vice president of product management Brian Biles said Data Domain's architecture offers high scalability and performance because its is "CPU centric" and relies on only limited disk access. Software tweaks and multi-core CPUs have allowed the company to boost "parallelism" and process more data, he said.
"We're starting to get backup speeds as fast as having no dedupe at all," said Biles.
Tony Asaro, senior consultant and founder of the INI Group, said Data Domain's performance "crushes the inline versus post-process dedupe debate. If you think about it, Data Domain stores data faster de-duplicated than many solutions can just get data to disk."
Still, the company remains focused on backup and has no plans to join EMC (NYSE: EMC) and NetApp (NASDAQ: NTAP) in the market for primary storage de-duplication, although Biles said the company's appliances could be used for primary dedupe under the right circumstances. "We're not positioning for primary storage," he said.
Data de-duplication has been one of the hottest storage technologies in recent years, thanks to its ability to help users save on storage costs. Data Domain says its customers typically enjoy a nine- to 15-month return on investment (ROI) for their dedupe purchases.
But the market has become crowded since Data Domain pioneered it several years ago. Data Domain shares plunged 32 percent in January after the company reported better than expected fourth-quarter sales growth of 90 percent, as the company's cautious outlook spooked investors.
Biles said the company was simply issuing "conservative guidance" because of the economy, and added that the company's competitive position remains strong.
"We see a lot of competitive announcements, but a lot of those products are very immature," he said.
The new Data Domain operating system software, DD OS 4.6, is available now. Pricing for the company's VTL appliances starts at $12,000 for the DD120 on the low end and $210,000 on the high end for the DD690. The company offers seven models.
The DD120 moves data at 150 to 300 gigabytes an hour, while the 10GbE DD690 can hit speeds of 1.4TB to 2.7TB an hour.