Business Briefs

Posted on August 01, 2000


Morning Planet has announced an e-community Web site for the data storage industry. is designed primarily for buyers and suppliers of storage components and software, and will include an online directory of vendors and products, as well as articles and white papers.

All of the leading Fibre Channel switch vendors have agreed on an interswitch routing protocol, dubbed Fabric Shortest Path First (FSPF), for switch-to-switch interoperability. The protocol has been submitted to the NCITS T11 technical committee, which is expected to forward it to ANSI for standards approval. The workgroup that voted on the proposal consists of Fibre Channel switch vendors Ancor, Brocade, Gadzoox, McData, and Vixel. FSPF was developed primarily by Brocade.

Ancor Communications and Hewlett-Packard have signed an OEM agreement under which HP will resell Ancor's 8-port and 16-port SANbox Fibre Channel switches in SAN configurations. Other Ancor OEMs include EMC, Hitachi Data Systems, Inrange, MTI, and Sun.

In an OEM agreement, JNI will supply its FibreStar Fibre Channel host bus adapters to Compaq. The agreement covers JNI's PCI and Sbus adapters, and is aimed primarily at Solaris servers attached to Compaq disk array subsystems.

Nortel and Computer Network Technology have entered into a partnership that addresses storage service providers (SSPs), as well as other xSPs. The two companies will collaborate on the design and development of products that integrate SAN applications and infrastructures with IP and optical Internet networks.

Fujitsu Siemens Computers last month became one of the first major OEMs for Exabyte's Mammoth-2 (M2) tape drives and libraries. Fujitsu Siemens will resell M2 drives and libraries for its Intel-based Primergy servers, Solaris/Sparc-based Prime-power platform, and Reliant Unix-based RM server line. Exabyte's M2 libraries range from one to ten drives, and from seven to 200 cartridges, for up to 30TB of capacity. Exabyte claims backup time of 1TB per hour.

IBM announced plans to develop a series of Infiniband-based chips to help link multiple systems and peripherals. The Infiniband Trade Association's final specification is slated for release later this year. IBM expects its Infiniband chips to be available in 2001.

CD-RW vendors Hewlett-Packard, MCC/Verbatim, Philips Electronics, Ricoh, Sony, and Yamaha announced two new initiatives designed to speed 4.7GB DVD+RW acceptance. The group outlined plans for a program to make DVD+RW verification tools and media available to DVD-ROM drive and DVD video player manufacturers. The companies also announced the availability of separate specifications for real-time video recording on DVD+RW media.

EMC last month qualified Qlogics' QLA2200 and QLA2100 series Fibre Channel host bus adapters for the Symmetrix 8000 family of disk arrays and Connectrix line of Fibre Channel switches in Windows NT/2000, Netware, and Solaris environments.

Brocade Communications and industry partners recently formed the Brocade Fabric Aware program. The testing and configuration initiative is designed to help SAN interoperability in multi-vendor, heterogeneous environments. Participating companies will specify, test, and jointly support pre-tested SAN configurations that include servers, storage subsystems, and Fibre Channel devices.

Emulex Corp. has announced software drivers supporting Linux. The drivers are approved for use with Caldera, RedHat, and TurboLinux platforms and are designed to support multi-protocol operation and switched fabrics.

Ciprico announced its FibreSTORE Fibre Channel RAID arrays are currently available with Seagate Technology's 73GB drives, increasing total storage capacity to 587GB per array.

Linear Tape-Open (LTO) vendors Hewlett-Packard, IBM, and Seagate Technology announced that Fuji Photo Film and Maxell successfully completed the Ultrium compliance verification testing process for media.

XIOtech has announced that Integrated Mass Storage Systems is now a certified reseller of its enterprise storage devices.

JVC Digital Storage Systems Division recently selected Crossroads Systems as a partner to develop a Fibre Channel JVC DVD-RAM Library storage solution. Crossroads Systems will provide its 4250 router for the JVC MC-7000 DVD-RAM library. Separately, Crossroads announced that Irvine, CA-based Wyle Systems will become a distributor.


An article in the June issue ("RAID, Fibre Channel reach optical storage," pp. 20-25), identified Hewlett-Packard and Maxoptix as the players in the magneto-optical (MO) market. We inadvertently omitted Plasmon, which has the #2 share in the MO market. According to GarrtnerGroup/Dataquest, HP has a 52.8% market share; Plasmon, 36.4%; Maxoptix, 7.4%; while the "other" category accounts for 3.4%.

Plasmon is expected to announce a strategy for Fibre Channel connectivity on its MO devices within the next month.

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