BY DAVE SIMPSON
Nishan Systems is hell-bent on proving that its IP storage architecture-dubbed Storage over IP (SoIP)-works with existing IP-based hardware and software. Earlier this year, the company demonstrated interoperability with IP switches from vendors such as Cisco, Foundry, and Nortel. Next came interoperability demonstrations with network management frameworks from vendors like BMC Software, Computer Associates, Hewlett-Packard, and Tivoli.
Tom Clark - Nishan Systems
In addition, at last month's Networld+ Interop show, Nishan announced interoperability between its SoIP switches and security tools from Check Point Software, NetScreen, RapidStream, and SonicWALL. These vendors are among the leaders in IP-based Virtual Private Network (VPN), encryption, and firewall security products. Specific products tested included Check Point's VPN-1/Firewall-1, the NetScreen-500 integrated firewall/VPN security system, RapidStream's VPN/fire-wall appliances, and Sonic-WALL's GX Series of Internet security systems.
"We're applying IP levels of security such as data encryption and authentication to data streams that originate in Fibre Channel," says Tom Clark, director of technical marketing at Nishan. "Similar security is still evolving in the Fibre Channel community." (Nishan's SoIP switches allow users to connect existing Fibre Channel and SCSI devices to standard IP networks such as Gigabit Ethernet.)
The combination of IP security tools and SoIP switches is geared primarily toward metropolitan- and wide area networks. At Networld+Interop, Nishan demonstrated over a Gigabit Ethernet network.
"With IP and Ethernet as the networking platform, while maintaining connectivity to Fibre Channel, SCSI, and iSCSI, we're able to demonstrate functionality that's been out of reach with Fibre Channel," says Gary Orenstein, director of marketing at Nishan.
Also last month, Nishan completed interoperability testing with StorageTek's 9840 Fibre Channel tape drive and L-Series tape libraries, Network Appliance's F700 and F800 network-attached storage (NAS) filers, and Fibre Channel host bus adapters from Adaptec, JNI, and QLogic.
SoIP is based on specifications such as iSCSI, iFCP, and iSNS, which are under development or have been proposed to the Internet Engineering Task Force.