By Richard R. Lee
Vicom Systems, a San Jose-based developer of storage area network (SAN) routers for use with SSA, SCSI, and Fibre Channel systems (10,000+ systems in the field), has announced some major expansions to its product line. No longer will the company's routers be limited to just Initiator-to-Target format conversion; they will also support Fibre Channel-to-Fibre Channel connectivity where any Fibre Channel target type can be connected to any type of Fibre Channel initiator. This Fibre Channel routing can then be complemented by the addition of Vicom's Storage Virtualization Engine (SVE).
The Vicom SVE combines the power of the company's pipe-lined router architecture with software applications that provide an end-to-end solution based on the virtualization engine. The software includes SV Mapper, SV Guard, and SV Copy Serve.
The virtualization engine supports a variety of functions, including:
- Storage pooling, virtualization, and re-source sharing (via zoning and mapping).
- Security and data protection.
- Data replication, instant copy, and backup/restore.
The SV Mapper tool is a GUI-based ap-plication that facilitates disk pooling via virtualization, and resource sharing via zoning and mapping. It runs in a distributed manner on each host as a daemon, allowing maximum redundancy and fault resilience along with high I/O performance.
Vicom's Storage Virtualization Engine (SVE) combines a pipe-lined router architecture and a variety of software applications.
SV Guard facilitates local and remote access to the shared resources, along with providing dynamic event logging and fault monitoring.
SV Copy Serve provides a range of tools, including RAID 1, auto rebuild, triple mirroring, and instant backup and restore using a hierarchy of disk and tape devices.
Vicom is focused on developing solutions in partnership with OEM partners such as Hewlett-Packard, and IBM, and has strategic relationships with Boeing and StorageNetworks Inc. as well.
Vicom Systems has been quietly building a large installed base for a number of years, while other vendors have been more vocal, but less successful, in this segment of the SAN market. Vicom can now count itself among the growing number of SAN virtualization providers, focused on both appliance-type and enterprise environments. The company's installed base of customers stands to benefit from these announcements, and the industry at large will have another choice in terms of virtualization.