Need More Data Dedupe Capacity? Just Turn It On

Posted on October 06, 2011 By Stuart J. Johnston

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Quantum Corp. introduced this week what it calls a new way to handle on demand data deduplication, one that doesn't require customers to add nodes in order to expand capacity or necessitate a field engineer's call.

The DXi4601 is the latest addition to Quantum's (NYSE: QTM) DXi4000 family of disk backup systems, and its secret is that the appliance comes with all the disk capacity already installed.

However, only the disk space that’s needed is initially enabled. The DXi4601 comes with 4 TB of capacity already enabled and can be scaled up to 12 TB in 4 TB increments by activating a simple software license key, according to a Quantum statement. The deduplication appliance uses 2 TB drives and is RAID 6 protected.

Quantum claims that its method of scaling is superior to so-called "grid-based" scaling that calls for the installation of multiple nodes -- adding a new node whenever more capacity is needed.

"The basic issue is that the nodes are essentially independent -- the size and speed of a backup job is limited by the performance and capacity of one node -- in fact each node has to reserve enough empty space to hold the entire backup set in an undeduplicated state," Steve Whitner, a Quantum product marketing manager, said in a blog post.

Deduplication only occurs for successive backup jobs going to the same node, and restores have to go back through the same node they came in through, he said.

That contrasts with the DXi4601's approach, which lets the customer start out with 4 TB and expand as needs demand.

"[With the DXi4601,] the expanded capacity immediately becomes part of a single deduplication pool -- and all data from all sources is deduplicated against all other data," Whitner added.

"That also means there’s no re-racking or re-wiring, no down time, and no service visit -- no IT person has to be on site at all," Whitner said.

Quantum's new DXi4601 will be available this month and starts at $21,500.

Stuart J. Johnston is a contributing editor at InternetNews.com, the news service of Internet.com, the network for technology professionals. Follow him on Twitter @stuartj1000.


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