Tegile Touts Hyrbid SSD-HDD Storage Array

By Kenneth Corbin

In a bid to boost performance while dramatically lowering capacity, storage startup Tegile recently emerged from stealth mode to introduce to the market its Zebi suite of hybrid storage arrays.

Tegile's Zebi family, which supports both SAN and NAS environments, pairs solid state and hard disk drive technology in a hybrid array that the young company boasts can yield a five-fold performance improvement while slimming capacity requirements by as much as 75 percent.

In particular, Tegile bills its SSD-HDD hybrid array as a storage solution built for the virtualization era, noting a proprietary metadata technology that accelerates processes such as deduplication, compression and snapshots.

"Legacy arrays do not serve the I/O density and latency requirements of virtual server, VDI and other applications running at scale," said Rob Commins, vice president of marketing at Tegile. "Capacity bloat in these environments drives unnecessary storage expenditures."

At its launch in February, Tegile claimed it had already signed up more than 50 clients in a variety of industries, including financial services, government and health care, that had deployed the Zebi array as their primary or replicated storage system.

The operative technology powering Zebi is what Tegile calls its Metadata Accelerated Storage System (MASS). MASS organizes and stores metadata apart from the data itself on high-speed devices accessible through optimized retrieval routes. The result, Tegile explains, is an accelerated storage apparatus in which every feature runs faster than in traditional deployments where metadata grows unchecked, becomes fragmented and weighs down the performance of the system over time.

Additionally, coupling high-speed solid state memory and high-capacity hard disk drives achieves what Tegile bills as a "no-point-of-failure architecture."

Newark, Calif-based Tegile handles the manufacturing, sales and support of its Zebi product with a business organized around what Commins described as "a direct b-to-b go-to-market model."

Tegile marks the fourth company the founders have launched. Its most recent previous venture, the network security firm Perfigo, was snapped up by Cisco in a $74 million deal announced in 2004.

After the founders parted ways with Cisco, they began exploring the idea of a new venture in the cloud gateway space but found the marketplace wanting.

"Amongst all the buzz, there was not much of a market for this type of device," Commins said.

He explained that the storage products on the market were not equipped for solid state drives and were bogged down by inefficiencies in the absence of robust features, such as deduplication and compression.

"There were a few all-flash systems entering the market at $5 per gigabyte, but none of them offered the value of hybrid SSD-HDD," Commins said. "Tegile was founded on the principle that SSD can be optimized for performance in the same system as HDDs can reside for [cost-per-gigabyte] value, and even further extended by de-duplication and compression."

A Zebi array can provide snapshot and replication features for $1 per gigabyte, according to the company.

Kenneth Corbin is a freelance writer based in Washington, D.C. He has written on politics, technology and other subjects for more than four years, most recently as the Washington correspondent for InternetNews.com, covering Congress, the White House, the FCC and other regulatory affairs. He can be found on LinkedIn here

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This article was originally published on March 07, 2012