Cloverleaf Does It All


Cloverleaf Communications has launched a storage appliance that the company says combines the virtualization features of a FalconStor or DataCore with the backup and disaster recovery functionality of a VERITAS or CA.

The spinoff of Israeli defense R&D firm Elta Systems says its Intelligent Storage Networking System, or iSN, is the first "3-D" system that consolidates storage capacity, bandwidth, and services, and is also the first of its kind to consolidate both SANs and NAS into a single system or storage area network to provide application servers with both block and file services.

"We believe that Cloverleaf represents some of the most serious 'adult thinking' that we've seen with regards to mission-critical storage management," says Arun Taneja, founder and consulting analyst at Taneja Group. "This is a piece of technology that should exceed many customers' expectations in its breadth of function, in particular its flexibility, reliability, and scalability. For these reasons we see this as a perfect solution for systems integrators, as it truly enables the kind of economic and operational efficiencies that drive the heart of the SI (systems integration) business model."

Cloverleaf CEO Avi Weiss and co-founder and COO Joseph Klein say they're on a mission to ease storage complexity.

"Everything is too complex," maintains Weiss. "The number one mission of Cloverleaf is to simplify storage management significantly."

Weiss claims iSN is "capable of managing everything," and doing so from a single point of view and interface.

The Cloverleaf system can support up to 32,000 instantaneous snapshots in an entry-level configuration for extremely fast restores. iSN also performs writeable snapshots, or "virtual replicas" that provide users with instantaneous virtual copies of complete applications that can be used for parallel QA testing, development, and training without using excess capacity or disrupting mission-critical applications. IT staff can work with fresh data more often while improving capacity utilization, according to the start-up.

iSN also provides high availability services, as diskless servers can boot off the Cloverleaf system using virtual replicas. Since virtual replicas require minimal storage capacity, utilization is maximized and the number of network servers can be reduced. Also, diskless servers become more reliable since they have fewer mechanical parts and can be hot-swapped if part of a clustered application.

The Cloverleaf system also provides non-disruptive growth through sparse volumes. When the application needs to grow, iSN automatically allocates capacity for "just-in-time" addition of storage.

So what does all that cost? A $240,000 entry-level system will provide most of the iSN services, the company says.

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