By Kevin Komiega
-- Quantum today announced the latest release of its StorNext data management software with integrated file system data deduplication and replication.
With StorNext 4.0, Quantum is introducing data deduplication natively in the file system for nearline data and multi-site environments. The variable-length deduplication technology now found in StorNext 4.0 finds redundant data blocks across files and stores only unique data, and is the same deduplication technology used in the company's line of DXi disk backup systems, according to Chris Duffy, Quantum's product marketing manager for StorNext.
"StorNext 4.0 uses the same deduplication engine as the DXi. The only difference is that the DXi implementation is optimized for backup and recovery while StorNext is optimized for data management and file protection," says Duffy.
In previous versions of StorNext, deduplication was exclusive to individual storage tiers. Duffy says integrating deduplication at the file system level provides more flexibility for customers in how they deploy the StorNext system.
"Customers can have a pure file system deployment, a dedupe repository within the file system or have a dedupe repository in a separate, adjacent file system to minimize performance impact," says Duffy.
StorNext 4.0, which will be available next month, also includes integrated replication. Managing data replication across distributed environments previously required a third- party product.
Duffy says the combination of native deduplication and replication gives StorNext 4.0 the ability to replicate only unique data, which reduces network bandwidth requirements.
StorNext is a self-archiving, self-protecting shared file system with a built-in policy engine for automated archiving. The software is aimed at environments that require high-speed access to shared files on heterogeneous storage systems.
StorNext works with everything from high-end disk arrays to tape libraries to NAS devices as well as a range of operating systems, including UNIX, Linux, Windows and Mac platforms.
The system is comprised of two software products – the StorNext File System and StorNext Storage Manager. The StorNext File System gives applications concurrent access to a common file store and allows data to be shared by both SAN- and LAN-based clients.
The StorNext Storage Manager automates data movement between storage tiers based on user-defined policies and file access requirements.
Quantum has also made improvements to StorNext's automated storage tiering through the addition of Distributed Data Movers (DDMs). The StorNext Storage Manager is the engine that makes the system run by moving data through the tiers and archiving process. Duffy says DDMs add extra horsepower to the process and allows for greater levels of scalability.
"Distributed DDMs can be deployed on smaller, low-cost servers for better performance and failover capability and move data to and from storage tiers," says Duffy.
In addition, StorNext 4.0 includes a new XML-based user interface and a timecode-based Partial File Retrieval (PFR) feature for retrieval of file segments for media asset management applications.