SWC product highlights

Posted on June 21, 2006

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—A number of vendors used this week's Storage World Conference in Long Beach, CA, as a venue for new product introductions. Here's a sampling from the first day of the show:

FalconStor Software entered the data de-duplication game this week with the launch of its Single Instance Repository (SIR) software. The core of the new software is a policy-based redundant data elimination (RDE) engine and object repository for storing backup and archive data.

The SIR software stores a single instance of each file or data block, effectively eliminating multiple copies or versions of the same information, which in turn, reduces capacity requirements for backup and archive data and cuts down on bandwidth requirements for virtual tape library (VTL) replication.

FalconStor's Don Mead, vice president of marketing, says the SIR software can be deployed in multiple ways, either as a network appliance or a high-availability cluster transparently attached to a current enterprise VTL solution or as a software add-on to existing VTL appliances.

"Our first integration of the software will be with our VTL product, and we will eventually open it up to apply it to other disk-based solutions," says Mead.

FalconStor's SIR software uses the RDE engine to scan virtual tape systems for duplicate files. Only unique data is then stored in the repository. SIR is also able to detect and index any changes. If two users are storing what they perceive to be their own versions of the same file, and one of them makes changes to their file, only the change is indexed and stored on FalconStor's Single Instance Repository. When the user goes to access the file, it is rebuilt by the SIR software and returned to the user by combining the original file contents plus the indexed change.

Users can also recover their data directly from the repository without the aid of a system administrator via FalconStor's File Recovery Agent. The File Recovery Agent allows any version of any backed-up file to be viewed and retrieved directly from the single instance repository, without involving the original backup software, backup administrator, or the virtual tapes themselves, according to Mead.

FalconStor's SIR will be available next month at a starting price of approximately $20,000. The company is planning to roll out a version of SIR for small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) in the coming months.

Also at the Storage World Conference this week, Quantum announced hardware and software upgrades to its midrange disk-based backup appliances with more capacity, support for LTO tape emulation, and new partitioning capabilities for SMBs.

Quantum boosted capacities of its DX3000 and DX5000 backup appliances by 25% via 500GB hard drives. The new partitioning feature allows the appliances to be partitioned in up to 16 different ways as either a VTL, raw disk volume, or both.

"Enterprise users partition their libraries to back up or consolidate different departments, while SMBs see the advantage of being able to use a chunk of their backup appliances as extra capacity," says Mike Sparkes, Quantum's disk product marketing manager.

Users can purchase a DX3000 with 1.5TB of usable capacity in a RAID-5 configuration for less than $10,000. The DX3000 and DX5000 appliances can support iSCSI or Fibre Channel network connectivity and deployment as virtual tape or disk arrays. Also included are dual RAID controllers, redundant and hot-swappable power supplies, hot-swap disk drives, and redundant fans.

Yosemite Technologies announced upgrades to its Yosemite Backup software, including capacity increases, VTL options, and support for Microsoft's Data Protection Manager (DPM) and Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS).

The D2D2NeT (disk-to-disk-to-any) option provides VTL functionality enables users to deploy a VTL with any disk array (versus proprietary hardware). The VTL option is priced at $699.

An optional DPM agent with support for Microsoft's VSS is available to allow users to take advantage of DPM replication with scheduled backup of replicas (by file or volume). The DPM agent is priced at $699 and requires an additional server client license for $199.

Also at the Storage World Conference this week, Ivivity announced a partnership with StoreAge Technologies. StoreAge will provide applications for IBM's BladeCenter on Ivivity's iDiSX storage network processors and Intelligent Services Module (ISM), a Fibre Channel and Ethernet-based switch that sits in the Ethernet switch bay of IBM's BladeCenter. Ivivity claims a 40Gbps internal bandwidth over 14 internal Gigabit Ethernet ports and four external 4Gbps Fibre Channel ports. StoreAge's Storage Virtualization Manager (SVM) software runs on the Ivivity architecture.

Brocade announced that its Tapestry wide area file services (WAFS) software will be embedded in Nortel's recently launched Business Continuity System (BCS) 3000 branch office configuration solution. The BCS 3000 will leverage Tapestry's Storage Caching over IP (SC-IP) and file-aware intelligence.


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