Storage Vendors Move Down Market

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With the high-end storage market slowing, vendors continue to see opportunity in the small- and mid-sized business market. Hitachi Data Systems and Network Appliance, for example, both rolled out products aimed at midrange enterprises today.

HDS took the wraps off the new Hitachi Universal Storage Platform VM, a diskless, lower-cost version of its high-end storage platform that sells for $60,000.

Hitachi bills the new controller as “the world’s first heterogeneous storage services platform that offers customers the operational, financial and environmental benefits of enterprise-class virtualization, thin provisioning and tiered storage in a package that does not require a raised floor data center and operates on an industry standard 220-volt power supply.”

Sun Microsystems and HP will also resell the new offering.

Tony Asaro, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group, said the USP VM “provides all of the advanced capabilities of its big brother, the USP V, but at a lower cost and smaller footprint. This new system allows smaller enterprises to package and deliver advanced virtualization, thin provisioning and business continuity storage services across heterogeneous file, object or block-based storage devices.”

Hitachi says the platform lets users “take back control of heterogeneous storage assets without introducing the reliability and scalability drawbacks of virtualization appliances.”

HDS chief scientist Claus Mikkelsen said separating commodity disks from the intelligent control unit lets users get into high-end storage cheaply and then grow as needed.

NetApp Cites Midrange Storage Growth

NetApp cited IDC’s forecast of 10.9% growth for the mid-sized enterprise storage market for its latest release, which will also be resold by IBM.

NetApp’s new FAS2020 and FAS2050 replace the FAS 200 series and complete the company’s overhaul of the FAS line. The target market is companies with $50 million to $500 million in sales 100 to 1,000 employees, with IT departments staffed by generalists, who need simple systems that can consolidate assets.

The offerings are also NetApp’s first SASproducts.

“I suspect in three years, SAS will completely replace Fibre Channel,” said marketing vice president Patrick Rogers.

The products offer snapshot and RAID 6 technology, data de-duplication, thin provisioning and application-centric data management.

VMware Continues to Make Storage News

Not surprisingly, with VMworld going on this week in San Francisco, HDS and NetApp also touted their products’ usefulness in virtualized environments (see Storage Vendors Take Aim at VMware). NetApp, for one, cited its ability to support 51,000 or more snapshots.

VMware, meanwhile, announced VMware Site Recovery Manager, which the company says will work with VMware Infrastructure to simplify and automate the disaster recovery process and speed recovery time. Recovery Manager also eliminates the cost and complexity of maintaining duplicate infrastructure at a recovery site.

The product is slated for release in the first half of 2008. Announcing their support for it today were NetApp, HDS, EMC, EqualLogic, HP, IBM and LeftHand Networks.

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Paul Shread
Paul Shread
eSecurity Editor Paul Shread has covered nearly every aspect of enterprise technology in his 20+ years in IT journalism, including an award-winning series on software-defined data centers. He wrote a column on small business technology for, and covered financial markets for 10 years, from the dot-com boom and bust to the 2007-2009 financial crisis. He holds a market analyst certification.

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