EMC taps ADIC for tape libraries

By Sonia R. Lelii

The company that once prophesized that tape was a dying technology has now signed an agreement with Advance Digital Information Corp. to resell ADIC's Scalar tape libraries.

In recent months, analysts have noted that EMC, a long-time proponent of disk, needed to incorporate tape technology within its portfolio to have a complete information life-cycle management (ILM) solution for tiered storage.

Now, EMC will offer its customers ADIC's automated tape libraries, which include the Scalar 24, Scalar 100, Scalar i2000, and Scalar 10K model with LTO tape drive technology. In turn, ADIC will resell EMC's CLARiiON CX networked storage systems as part of its Pathlight VX virtual tape solution for nearline storage and offline vaulting.

Sean Kinney, senior marketing manager at EMC, says EMC chose ADIC over the other tape library vendors, including StorageTek, because the company has a like-minded engineering culture and "best-of-breed" tape technology. Moreover, ADIC offered a strategic mid-market opportunity for EMC. ADIC tends to focus on Fortune 3000 companies, and about 90% of its revenues are generated through partner and sales-assist models.

Products from both EMC and ADIC will be available next month.

As part of the agreement, EMC will focus on the sales contracts when reselling the tape libraries while ADIC will offer sales and support. ADIC will resell the CLARiiON product, with ATA drives, as part of the back-end solution to its Pathlight VX product line. Scalar library family features include integrated SAN support, intelligent monitoring and alerting functions, capacity-on-demand, and options for redundant robotics and controllers for high availability. Pathlight VX combines disk and tape in a single system to back up and restore data. Now the disk part of that technology will be EMC's CLARiiON arrays.

When asked why EMC finally had decided to add tape to its product portfolio, Kinney admitted it was because of external pressure. "Our customers pushed us to add tape. The timing was right. We now have an ILM strategy that can handle end-to-end migration."

This article was originally published on June 21, 2004