EMC Ships Unified Management Software for Clariion, Celerra

EMC made good on its promise to deliver a unified management platform for its Clariion and Celerra arrays with today’s official debut of Unisphere, a single dashboard for managing its midrange SAN and NAS systems.

The company also began shipping its FAST Cache technology, support for VAAI integration, two new NAS gateway systems and announced its plans to add native Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) connectivity later this year.

The new EMC (NYSE: EMC) Unisphere management software, which EMC previewed at last May’s EMC World conference in Boston, is a common element manager for the Clariion and Celerra that automates many of the common tasks storage administrators are forced to perform manually.

Unisphere is integrated with VMware vSphere and VMware’s vStorage API’s for Array Integration (VAAI). The vStorage API’s make it possible to use array-based hardware acceleration that allows VMware ESX servers to offload specific storage operations to compliant storage hardware.

With an assist from storage arrays, ESX servers can perform storage operations faster and consumes less CPU, memory, and storage fabric bandwidth.

On the efficiency side of things, EMC is now shipping FAST (Fully Automated Storage Tiering) Cache, which uses industry standard Flash drives as a non-volatile read/write cache. FAST Cache works with Block Data Compression as part of the FAST Suite to automatically move data between high-speed SSDs and high-capacity SATA drives.

Native FCoE connectivity for Clariion and Celerra will be available as a separate, licensable option in Q4 of this year, according to Jon Siegal, director of product marketing, EMC.

Siegal said the per system charge for the FAST Suite (including FAST, FAST Cache, Unisphere Analyzer, Unisphere QoS Manager) starts at approximately $7,000.

Additionally, EMC has doubled the performance of its Celerra storage gateways by moving to Intel’s 64-bit Intel Xeon 5600 processors, code-named “Westmere” with a pair of new gateways – the Celerra VG2 and VG8.

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Kevin Komiega
Kevin Komiega is an Enterprise Storage Forum contributor.

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