Industry News and Analysis

Raidtec intros Ultra2 LVD SCSI and FC arrays
January 1, 1999 -- Raidtec`s FlexArray-HI is a Wide Ultra2 LVD RAID subsystem based on a three-channel, 80MBps SCSI-to-SCSI bridge controller. Supporting up to eight virtual array groups, the subsystems can be configured for RAID0, 1, 1+0, and 5. Each enclosure supports seven 3.5-inch SCSI drives, and up to four FlexArrays can be cascaded for more than 500GB of capacity on a single controller.
RAID array sales top $13 billion; server vendors continue to dominate
January 1, 1999 -- Worldwide disk drive array shipments were expected to rise 24% in 1998 to more than 1.3 million units, according to a recent report from Disk/Trend Inc., a market research firm in Mountain View, CA. The shipment increase translates to more than $13 billion in sales, a 13.4% increase over 1997 revenues.
SANs: whats real, whats not?
January 1, 1999 -- Storage area networks (SANs) are the new buzz in corporate IT circles. Most industry observers agree that SANs will become the standard architecture for enterprise-wide network storage within the next three years. But how much of the buzz is hype and how much is real? And how long will you have to wait for the promise of SANs to become a reality?
SCH launches SAN suite
January 1, 1999 -- Last month, SCH Technologies launched REELrobot 8.0, a SAN-enabled robotic connectivity software package that provides integration between more than 70 tape libraries and StorageTek`s REELbackup and REELibrarian software. REELrobot enables users to share libraries with several applications and platforms, including Unix and Windows NT. The 8.0 version has added SAN switch support for any shared, multiplexed or switched drive over both SCSI and Fibre Channel and SCSI MUX support where customers ca
Sony offers built-in Fibre Channel connectivity
January 1, 1999 -- At Fall Comdex, Sony Electronics demonstrated its GY-4240 DTF-2 tape drive in the Fibre Channel Loop Community exhibit area. The second-generation DTF drive is reportedly the first tape drive to feature direct-attached--rather than bridge--Fibre Channel connectivity.
SGI maps SAN plan
January 1, 1999 -- In an attempt to leverage its traditional strengths in video environments, Silicon Graphics Inc. last month outlined its plan to capitalize on the transition from digital media storage area networks to enterprise SANs.
Quantum, WD to ship 7,200rpm Ultra ATA/66 drives
January 1, 1999 -- Quantum is expected to ship in March its Fireball Plus KA desktop disk drives, which will support the Ultra ATA/66 interface and a rotation rate of 7,200rpm. Capacities range from 6.4GB to 18.2GB. The drives will ship with Quantum`s Data Protection System (DPS), which assesses the functionality of the drive when a PC malfunctions. Other features include magneto-resistive (MR) heads and an 8.5-millisecond average seek time. Estimated retail pricing for the 18.2GB version is $399. www.quantum.com.
QLogics QLA2100, QLA2100F, and QLA2000 PCI host bus adapters were certified for use in Microsofts
January 1, 1999 -- QLogic`s QLA2100, QLA2100F, and QLA2000 PCI host bus adapters were certified for use in Microsoft`s cluster/Fibre Channel adapter environment for Windows NT 4.0. On a separate note, QLogic also signed a deal with Intergraph Computer Systems, whereby its GEM312 enclosure management controller will be integrated into Intergraph`s InterServe server line.
Optical vendors not worried about NFR
January 1, 1999 -- In an unofficial sampling taken at Fall Comdex, optical storage vendors said they were not concerned about their future market share being diminished by near-field recording (NFR) technology. However, among those optical vendors familiar with NFR, some believe the concept of using removable 10GB and 20GB 5.25-inch drives shows potential.
New look and feel, same content
January 1, 1999 -- Our regular readers will notice that with this issue INFOSTOR moves from a magazine layout to a larger, newspaper-style format. The primary reason for the redesign is simple: studies have shown that this format delivers increased--and more immediate--readership. It`s important to us that our readers read the publication as soon as they get it, as opposed to putting it in a pile for more leisurely perusal.
Overland Data introduced its Fibre Channel Connectivity Initiative. The program will provide its
January 1, 1999 -- Overland Data introduced its Fibre Channel Connectivity Initiative. The program will provide its LibraryXPress customers with a Fibre Channel connectivity option. As part of the initiative, Overland will develop strategic partnerships with various Fibre Channel storage vendors. The company has already signed a co-marketing agreement with ATTO Technology, which links ATTO`s FibreBridge to its Fibre Channel-to-SCSI bridge.
Pioneer announces 4.7GB DVD-R drive
January 1, 1999 -- Pioneer New Media Technologies introduced plans for its 4.7GB DVD-R optical disk drive. In addition to DVD-RW capability, the drive is expected to provide more than 1,000 rewrites. Available in both an external and half-height internal versions, the SCSI-2 drive has 1X DVD-ROM write speed and 2X DVD-ROM read speed. Pioneer expects to ship the drive next quarter with an MSRP of less than $5,000.
Procom enhances network storage capabilities
January 1, 1999 -- Procom`s new Tape Array 100 series is designed to meet the capacity and high-availability demands of enterprise storage applications. The array features a scalable design, which allows users to add up to five AIT autoloaders or five DLT7000 or AIT drives. When fully configured with DLT7000 drives, the array delivers up 350GB of capacity; with five AIT drives, 250GB; and with five AIT autoloaders, up to 1TB. All drives are mounted on hot-swappable shuttles for quick, easy replacement, and all tap
STK, Veritas team up for tape management standard
January 1, 1999 -- StorageTek and Veritas Software last week announced a partnership they hope will lead to a standard method of managing removable storage devices. "We`re combining forces to drive a widely used standard for easier media and library management," says Mark Davis, vice president of marketing at STK`s multiplatform business group.
Stor releases software-based RAID
January 1, 1999 -- Simplifying RAID setup and configuration, nStor`s AdaptiveRAID software adapts to RAID levels based on changes in I/O workloads and patterns. The company claims this approach virtually eliminates the write penalties associated with most RAID5 implementations. The initial version works with Windows NT, although the software is portable to other operating systems. Other features include SAF-TE compliance and "drive roaming."
Tricord Systems, a storage management software vendor in the Windows NT market, received a $3
January 1, 1999 -- Tricord Systems, a storage management software vendor in the Windows NT market, received a $3 million private equity placement from an investment group led by Rod Canion, a founder and former CEO of Compaq. Tricod will use the infusion of capital to accelerate product development.
The IT Service division of Siemens Information and Communication Products introduced a new suite of
January 1, 1999 -- The IT Service division of Siemens Information and Communication Products introduced a new suite of high-availability Unix and Windows NT services for mission-critical data centers. The six modules can be integrated as needed. Services include system administration (on-site and remote), operating system migration, backup and recovery, performance management, capacity management, and clustering implementation.
Ultra-ATA RAID provides compelling price/performance
January 1, 1999 -- Data-storage requirements of specific enterprise applications, which are often placed on dedicated servers, are exploding. The next generation of servers also sports extended PCI bus capabilities for greater I/O. Ultra-ATA disk technology brings down the cost of terabyte-class RAID storage arrays.
Verbatim intros optical drives, media
January 1, 1999 -- Targeting applications such as video multimedia production and post-production, Verbatim has introduced the model 5200 5.2GB magneto-optical (MO) drive and accompanying media. The new drive achieves sustained data transfer rates of up to 10MBps, burst transfer rates of 20MBps at 2,942rpm, a 10.2ms average latency, and an average seek time of 20ms.
Vixel Corp. will supply its Rapport 1000 Fibre Channel hubs and OE1063SW model short-wave gigabit
January 1, 1999 -- Vixel Corp. will supply its Rapport 1000 Fibre Channel hubs and OE1063SW model short-wave gigabit transceivers for IBM`s Netfinity Fibre Channel subsystem. Separately, IBM announced the transfer of the ADSTAR Distributed Storage Manager (ADSM) business to its subsidiary Tivoli Systems.
Verisys to support NT, Ultra160/m
January 1, 1999 -- Next month, Verisys plans to add support for Windows NT to its SV-3000 SCSI bus analyzers. The company expects to support the Ultra160/m SCSI interface in the second quarter. The SV-3000 is a notebook-based analyzer that currently supports single-ended and Ultra2 LVD SCSI systems. Verisys claims a 5ns REQ-ACK timing resolution capability, and a capture buffer that can handle two million events. Price: $7,995.
Test driving a PCI-based DLT library
January 1, 1999 -- As Windows 2000 invades the enterprise data center, sites will have to confront the explosive growth in disk data. Further complicating this scenario is the distributed nature of the BackOffice family, which often has enterprise applications such as Exchange and SQL Server running on separate servers. Automated tape libraries that can service multiple servers either through a direct connect or a smart software scheme will be essential.
Tecmar Technologies recently signed several OEM agreements for its Travan NS20 tape technology.
January 1, 1999 -- Tecmar Technologies recently signed several OEM agreements for its Travan NS20 tape technology. Most notably, Tecmar signed a pact with Motorola Computer Group (MCG). MCG will offer the drive as a backup solution for its passive backplane computer systems, which are sold into embedded computing market segments. Asus, a board and card manufacturer, will use the NS20 for in its AsusPro series servers, and Leo Systems, Inc., also a manufacturer of motherboards, will integrate the drive into its 900
StorageTek has certified the use of Amdahl TDMF storage management software with its Remote Device
January 1, 1999 -- StorageTek has certified the use of Amdahl TDMF storage management software with its Remote Device System (RDS). The combination will enable OS/390 users to move and copy data to remote direct-access storage devices. Also certifying TDMF was Innovation Data Processing, for use with its FDR InstantBackup software. The software duo will enable transparent data movement with a nondisruptive backup process.
Storage area networks: hype and hope
January 1, 1999 -- Over the last two years, many suppliers have defined the storage area network (SAN) architecture as a group of storage systems and servers that are connected together via a Fibre Channel hub or switch. Gartner Group`s Dataquest believes this definition is too exclusive and undercuts the potential benefits of this evolutionary technology.
StorageTek ships VSM and 9840
January 1, 1999 -- StorageTek last month increased production of its Virtual Storage Manager (VSM) system and 9840 tape drive--two components of the company`s recently announced Virtual Intelligent Storage Architecture (VISTA). VSM combines disk, automated tape, and software in a single integrated system for improved data access, retrieval, and migration for such business initiatives as data-center consolidation, e-commerce, data warehousing, and enterprise resource planning. The system can be integrated into Stor
Tape market embraces RAID
January 1, 1999 -- One by one, tape drive manufacturers and library vendors are stepping up to the plate with tape RAID offerings. Though still in its infancy, tape RAID is expected to become increasingly popular over the next couple of years.
Tape: Sony and Tandberg on schedule; Quantum slips
January 1, 1999 -- After much ado, second-generation midrange tape products are nearing production shipments. For example, Sony and Tandberg say they will begin volume shipments in March.
NAS goes Mainstream
January 1, 1999 -- The network-attached storage (NAS) market may have entered 1998 as a niche segment, but as the year ended significant OEM agreements and technology alliances signaled its beginning as a more mainstream option.
Mylex Corp. announced that its AcceleRAID 200 family of low-cost RAID adapters has been qualified
January 1, 1999 -- Mylex Corp. announced that its AcceleRAID 200 family of low-cost RAID adapters has been qualified for Intel`s Pentium II Xeon processor-based server platform, which started shipping in October. Mylex also selected QLogic`s ISP2100 64-bit intelligent Fibre Channel processor for its DAC960FF Fibre Channel external RAID controller.
Compaq sketches ENSA road map
January 1, 1999 -- Architecture will take advantage of virtualization, with products being phased in over the next few years.
Compaq and LSI Logic Storage Systems chose Hewlett-Packards TACHYON controllers for their
January 1, 1999 -- Compaq and LSI Logic Storage Systems chose Hewlett-Packard`s TACHYON controllers for their respective storage lines. Compaq chose the 64-bit PCI version for a yet-to-be-named storage product, while LSI will integrate the the TACHYON TL (Fibre Channel) into its next-generation storage controllers. Because the TACHYON TL does not need companion SRAM, solutions can be created with fewer components so that they occupy less board area. Last month, Avnet Electronics Marketing said it will distribute H
Components supplier solves backup problems
January 1, 1999 -- When it came to protecting its data, Silicon Systems Inc. (SSI), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Texas Instruments and a manufacturer of semiconductors and complementary servo/spindle, interface, preamp, and ASIC devices, looked at a variety of solutions. We even considered attaching tape drives to each of our
Crag Technologies and Chaparral Technologies have entered into a joint agreement to develop SAN
January 1, 1999 -- Crag Technologies and Chaparral Technologies have entered into a joint agreement to develop SAN products and technologies. Crag will provide the platform- and hardware-independent storage management software and RAID subsystem technologies; Chaparral, external RAID controllers and intelligent storage routers.
DPT expands controller family
January 1, 1999 -- Distributed Processing Technology (DPT) recently added PCI controllers to its Decade, Century and Millenium lines. The Decade PM1554U2 ($658) is a one-channel Ultra2 SCSI board with up to 64MB of cache via an add-on module. The Century PM2654U2-F ($1,158) controller is a dual-channel board that supports both Ultra2 SCSI and Fibre Channel interfaces.
Creative Design Solutions (CDS) and SimpleFS have signed a technology pact. CDS will provide
January 1, 1999 -- Creative Design Solutions (CDS) and SimpleFS have signed a technology pact. CDS will provide SimpleFS with thin-server products and network and file-sharing technology in return for storage devices and integration for high-speed, efficient file access and management for open systems.
CLARiiON and LSI Logic will integrate Emulexs Lightpulse PCI host bus adapter into their Fibre
January 1, 1999 -- CLARiiON and LSI Logic will integrate Emulex`s Lightpulse PCI host bus adapter into their Fibre Channel storage subsystems. CLARiiON chose the LP7000E for its FC5000 series; LSI Logic, as an option for its MetaStor line. In addition, Seagate Software certified the adapters for its Backup Exec Shared Storage Option for Windows NT and NetWare. The adapters have already been certified with the ADIC Scalar 218 and FCR 100 Fibre Channel-to-SCSI router and the Exabyte 203D tape library series.
Clariion adds entry-level FC array
January 1, 1999 -- Data General`s Clariion storage division last month announced the FC5703 Fibre Channel disk array. Starting at $35,000 for a configuration with 10 disk drives, the array can scale to 30 drives. Data integrity features include dual-active processors and mirrored write cache. Operating system support includes Windows NT, NetWare, Solaris, HP-UX, and AIX.
ATL intros admin suite
January 1, 1999 -- ATL Products is shipping version 2.0 of its WebAdmin remote library administration software. With the use of a Java-enabled browser, WebAdmin 2.0 allows system administrators to easily access tape libraries from within an Intranet or on the World Wide Web for such activities as library set-up, monitoring, event logging and event notification. WebAdmin 2.0 includes the following new features: predictive failure analysis using event triggers, support for non-ATL libraries, an SNMP library monitori
Artecon aims for SANs with FC array
January 1, 1999 -- Compatible with Windows NT and Solaris, Artecon`s LynxArray 500 RAID subsystem includes dual Fibre Channel loops for an aggregate maximum data transfer rate of 200MBps. The company`s LUN-X software allows assignment of specific RAID sets, or logical unit numbers (LUNs), to individual servers, and the ability to mask non-applicable LUNs to avoid contention problems. The enclosure includes devices for storage area network (SAN) connectivity, including hubs, and Fibre Channel cabling.
Building and managing SANs
January 1, 1999 -- As the number of internal and external users increases within enterprises, more servers and capacity are needed. Multiple servers are commonly connected to many gigabytes or terabytes of disk storage, which cannot be adequately moved through current network pipes, such as gigabit Ethernet and ATM.
Building SANs to scale
January 1, 1999 -- As more data and transactions go online, early storage area networks (SANs) are being challenged to support more and more devices. Although Fibre Channel technology was designed for scalability, not all implementations scale equally. The simplest and least expensive implementation of Fibre Channel is a point-to-point connection between a server and a storage device.
Carlsbad, CA-based Artecon announced a 20% cut in its workforce, including a reduction of
January 1, 1999 -- Carlsbad, CA-based Artecon announced a 20% cut in its workforce, including a reduction of operations at its Milpitas, CA, office to just sales and service.
DVD+RW group sets road map
January 1, 1999 -- For OEMs, integrators, and end-users preparing to migrate from CD to DVD, there`s more than one road to take. The DVD+RW Compatibility Alliance (DCA) recently announced plans for its next-generation rewritable optical format, which is expected to compete with the rival DVD-RAM format. Headed by Hewlett-Packard, Philips, Ricoh, Sony, Verbatim and Yamaha, the group has agreed on specifications for a 4.7GB-per-side DVD+RW format for submission to international standards organizations later this yea
EMC and NEC last month entered into a multi-year reseller agreement. NEC will resell EMCs
January 1, 1999 -- EMC and NEC last month entered into a multi-year reseller agreement. NEC will resell EMC`s Symmetrix enterprise storage systems with its Express5800 and NX7000 storage systems.
JVC debuts CD/DVD library
January 1, 1999 -- JVC`s Professional Computer Products Division last month announced a 100-disc CD/DVD library. The MC-2100U holds 65GB using CD drives and 470GB with DVD drives. Its base model includes two 50-disc removable magazines, two 32X CD-ROM drives, a SCSI-2 interface along with a 10-key front display panel with support for up to four drives.
I20 version 1.5 specification is now available from the I20 Special Interest Group at no cost.
January 1, 1999 -- I20 version 1.5 specification is now available from the I20 Special Interest Group at no cost. Member-registered developers can now download the spec from SIG`s Web site: www.i2o.org. I2O is a standard method for designing intelligent I/O subsystems; it eliminates the need for operating system-specific drivers. The next version is due early in the second quarter.
Kudos on SCSIcoverage
January 1, 1999 -- I`ve only been reading InfoStor for a few months, but the November issue is a keeper. "Inside the Ultra2 LVD SCSI Interface" [p. 34] by Lohmeyer and Schmitz gave me more information on all forms of SCSI than I`ve ever seen in one place. I`ll be quoting it, and using it to show my customers why they need LVD drives for their computer animation and video production. Thanks again for a great resource.
Last month, TeraStor formed strategic alliances with Micro Design International and Luminex. The
January 1, 1999 -- Last month, TeraStor formed strategic alliances with Micro Design International and Luminex. The two companies will develop and promote their Universal Disk Format-compliant software in conjunction with TeraStor`s Near-field Recording drives.
More SCSI vs. Fibre Channel
January 1, 1999 -- I read with mounting consternation the Opinion article on page 62 in the November issue of INFOSTOR ("SCSI vs. Fibre Channel Drives"). My response follows.
LSI puts RAID on a chip
January 1, 1999 -- This month, LSI Logic began shipping a single-chip PCI-SCSI RAID I/O processor. The SYM53C1510 chip, which replaces the four or five chips typically required, is designed for use on motherboards or in low-cost adapters. Potential benefits include reduced costs, lower power requirements, higher reliability, and fewer board-level layers.
How to improve SAP Raid performance
January 1, 1999 -- SAP R3 (SAP) is one of the most popular integrated software systems. However, the suite has proven to be a large, complicated application requiring considerable configuration and programming expertise. System administration of a SAP installation is similarly complex, requiring knowledge of the underlying database, experience in managing large servers with multiple gigabytes or terabytes of disk storage, and new methods for protecting critical data.
Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) and Sutmyn Storage expanded their distribution agreement to include the
January 1, 1999 -- Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) and Sutmyn Storage expanded their distribution agreement to include the distribution and servicing of Sutmyn`s Scimitar/Virtual Tape Server (VTS) in the United States. The agreement also includes certification of the Hitachi Freedom 7700E and 5700E storage subsystems with Scimitar/VTS. In a separate agreement, Computer Network Technology SAN data channel connectivity hardware is now certified to operate with the Scimitar/VTS.
Exabyte launches DLT autoloader
January 1, 1999 -- Suitable for distributed network environments such as small offices, remote installations, separate LANs or work groups, and single-server applications, Exabyte`s 17D DLTtape autoloader accommodates one DLT4000 or DLT7000 drive and seven Exabyte DLTtape cartridges. In a cubic foot of space, the 17D provides up to 490GB of compressed capacity, with a compressed data throughput of up to 36GB per hour. The autoloader is available in desktop or rack-mount configurations and features Wide SCSI (singl
Enterprise backup from the desktop
January 1, 1999 -- Legato Systems is shipping Networker Remote, software designed to provide enterprise data protection and disaster recovery for Windows-based PCs and laptops. For remote users with limited network bandwidth and connectivity, Networker Remote conducts intelligent compression and sub file-level backup to help reduce network traffic. If laptops are lost or stolen, the software goes through Microsoft Explorer to conduct file and directory restore functions without the need for a network administrator
Fibre Channel interoperability: Are we there yet?
January 1, 1999 -- As with any new interface, Fibre Channel poses daunting interoperability challenges for both vendors and third-party systems integrators, as well as for end users that want the flexibility of mixing and matching products from different vendors. Although significant strides have been made over the last year, the fact remains that the industry is still far from the promised land where any vendors` host bus adapter, disk drive, subsystem, switch, hub, etc., will work with every other vendors` devic
Finisar puts VI on FC adapter
January 1, 1999 -- Finisar`s FC-VI is a Fibre Channel host bus adapter that supports the Virtual Interface (VI) Architecture and VI Provider Library (VIPL). VI is a protocol specification (developed primarily by Intel, Microsoft, and Compaq) designed to reduce latency and CPU utilization in message-passing systems such as clusters. Finisar`s FC-VI works with Windows NT, and allows ISVs to develop cluster applications using the VIPL API.
HDS targets SANs, clusters
January 1, 1999 -- Designed for storage area networks and clustered configurations, Hitachi Data Systems` Freedom Storage 5800 disk array can be configured with Hitachi`s 3.5-inch 18GB disk drives for a maximum capacity of more than 1TB. The array can be operated in JBOD or RAID0, 1, 5, or 0+1 configurations.
ADIC intros new line of AIT libraries
January 1, 1999 -- With the addition of the Scalar AIT series earlier this month, ADIC claims to have the broadest selection of AIT products in the industry--ranging from single-drive subsystems to data-center-class systems with more than 80TB of storage capacity. Steve Whitner, ADIC marketing manager, cites the increasing popularity of AIT technology over the last 6 to 8 months and the promise of AIT-2 this year as evidence to support the company`s decision to bolster its AIT product lineup.