Serial ATA product roundup
Shipments of Serial ATA (SATA) disk drives are expected to surge from 1.6 million units last year to almost 3.6 million units this year and more than 6 million next year-and that’s not including desktop drives (see “Make way for SATA II,” on the cover of this issue). Not surprisingly, product releases are coming fast and furious. Here’s just a smattering of some of the SATA products that recently began shipping-from systems to silicon.
Procom recently released a SATA-based NAS filer, the NetFORCE 900, that is priced from $9,995 for a 480GB configuration with six 80GB drives. The 3U filer scales up to 4.8TB and includes the same operating system and journaling file system that runs on Procom’s higher-end NAS systems. Other features of the Xeon-based filer include support for NDMP, RAID, and SNMP monitoring, as well as options for local SCSI backup and ProMirror disaster-recovery software. www.procom.com.
Based on SATA drives in 1U (480GB to 1.6TB) or 2U (1.44TB to 4.8TB) configurations, InoStor’s M Series InteliNAS appliances run Windows Storage Server software and support RAID 0, 1, and 5. Options include an integrated tape autoloader (from InoStor, which is a Tandberg Data company) as well as disk-to-disk backup capabilities. Pricing begins at $3,099 for a low-end 1U model, and $7,399 for the entry-level 2U model. www.inostor.com.
Xyratex’s 4200 is an FC-SATA (Fibre Channel to Serial ATA) expansion JBOD system, designed for OEMs, that can be integrated with the company’s 4200 FC-SATA RAID system. The 3U, 16-drive subsystem provides up to 5TB (35TB when combined with a 4200 RAID array). The 4200 is based on silicon storage router technology from Sierra Logic and Xyratex’s RS-1600 enclosures. A switching interposer card allows support for dual pathing on the SATA drives. www.xyratex.com.
Infortrend has added an iSCSI-to-SATA II subsystem to its line of EonStor RAID arrays. The EonStor A12E-G2121 includes SATA II drives with Native Command Queuing, two Gigabit Ethernet ports, CHAP authentication security, support for Jumbo Frames, 12 3Gbps SATA-II drive channels, 12 drives, and up to 1GB of cache memory per PowerPC-based controller. www.infortrend.com.
Start-up Rasilient Systems has entered the market with the SATA-based RASTOR 4000, which is designed for entry-level markets and includes Linux-based software that emulates full RAID and volume management functionality. The 3U 4000, which scales up to 3.75TB, supports iSCSI or Fibre Channel for external connections, active-active controller fail-over, 15 dual-ported SATA drives, up to 256 LUNs, and RAID 0, 1, 5, and 10. www.resilient.com.
Aimed at resellers in the film, video, and broadcast markets, Rorke Data’s Galaxy-HDX is a SATA II RAID array for Apple or Windows Platforms. Priced from $13,750 for a 6.4TB configuration, the 3U HDX supports both Fibre Channel and Ultra320 SCSI host connections and is based on Infortrend enclosures. Rorke Data, a subsidiary of Bell Microproducts, claims a sustained throughput rate of more than 300MBps for write operations and 450MBps for reads. The system supports all RAID levels. www.rorke.com.
Slated for availability in the next quarter, Medéa’s 3U StreamRAID 15 disk array will support up to 15 dual-ported SATA drives, 4Gbps Fibre Channel host connectivity (four ports), one or two controllers per chassis, and one or two optional 8-port plug-in switches with full Fibre Channel fabric support. www.medea.com.
LSI Logic’s MegaRAID SATA 300-8X is an 8-port, 3Gbps SATA II RAID adapter that can connect up to 32 SATA drives using eight 1-to-4-port multipliers. Features include support for Native Command Queuing, PCI-X (64-bit, 66/100/133MHz), Intel’s IOP331 IO processor, 128MB of ECC SDRAM, and enclosure management. www.lsilogic.com.
Addonics’ ADSA3GX4R is a 4-port, 3Gbps SATA II RAID controller for PCI-X (64-bit, 133MHz) systems. The controller is based on Silicon Image’s SATA II ASIC, which provides embedded support for first-party DMA commands for Native Command Queuing. Features include on-chip hardware RAID and compatibility with Addonics’ 4SA disk array. www.addonics.com.
Designed for OEMs, Sierra Logic’s BR-2401 is a Fibre Channel to SATA “silicon storage bridge” that complements the company’s line of silicon storage routers introduced last year (which are used by subsystem vendors such as Dot Hill and Xyratex). The bridges provide transparent emulation of Fibre Channel disk drives, allowing SATA drives to be inserted into any Fibre Channel drive slot and to be mixed with Fibre Channel drives within a single storage enclosure (JBOD or RAID). The BR-2401 has dual 2Gbps Fibre Channel ports (commands can be sent simultaneously to both ports), with a 4Gbps version due in the next quarter. www.sierralogic.com.
Start-up SiliconStor’s AAMUX is an active-active multiplexer that enables disk array manufacturers to build storage subsystems with single-ported SATA drives that can connect directly to dual-port infrastructures and emulate the reliability and performance characteristics of Fibre Channe drives. (Dot Hill uses SiliconStor’s multiplexers in its SANnet II SATA arrays.) With an active-active multiplexer, both ports are available at the same time, as opposed to the more-traditional active-passive architecture where only one host port is connected to the device ports. The AAMUX is compatible with Sierra Logic’s silicon storage routers. The SS1100 AAMUX is a SATA I device, while the SS1200 is a SATA II device that supports Native Command Queuing. www.siliconstor.com.
This month, Broadcom released version 1.4 of its XelCore software for the company’s line of SATA RAID controllers (which Broadcom got via its acquisition of RAIDCore). Features of the software include controller spanning, multiple array types per drive, online capacity expansion, and bidirectional online RAID level migration. The new release adds support for Linux 2.4 and 2.6 kernels, as well as support for >2TB array sizes on Linux 2.6 kernels and increased performance on systems with more than 1GB of memory. The software is compatible with Linux distributions from Red Hat, Fedora, and SuSE, as well as Windows 2000, XP, and 2003. www.broadcom.com.
Atto, FalconStor, Rackable target iSCSI
Last month, Atto Technology released the third generation of its iSCSI-to-SCSI bridge line. The iPBridge 1550E/D supports Microsoft’s iSCSI software initiator, the IEFT 1.0 iSCSI specification, and a variety of third-party hardware and software products.
The bridge allows users to connect SCSI devices to Ethernet in an iSCSI-based IP SAN configuration. Based on an Intel IOP321 I/O processor, the 1550E/D bridge includes one Gigabit Ethernet port and one Ultra160 SCSI port. www.attotech.com.
Also last month, FalconStor Software released the next generation of its iSCSI Storage Server, which is based on Microsoft’s Windows Storage Server 2003 software.
The appliance is designed for applications such as disaster recovery (via IP-based delta replication), mirroring, disk-based backup, storage consolidation, and rapid restore. Features include a Multipathing Service for Fibre Channel-attached storage; load balancing for performance optimization; a two-node active-active fail-over/fail-back cluster configuration; a Consistency Group feature that allows virtual drives to be grouped for snapshot synchronization; and “zero-impact backup.” www.falconstor.com.
Rackable Systems’ iSCSI target systems can scale up to 134TB via a “back-to-back” cabinet design and Serial ATA (SATA) disk drives. Up to 24 hot-swappable SATA drives can be configured per 3U of rack space.
The systems are compatible with Wasabi Systems’ Storage Builder 1500i iSCSI software. A 3TB configuration is priced from $3 per gigabyte. www.rackable.com.
NTP Software goes 64-bit
NTP Software has extended its user-driven, policy-based QFS management software and Universal User-based Management technology to include 64-bit platforms. Compatible with 32-bit versions of QFS, the 64-bit Windows-compatible storage resource management software is available in two versions, one for Intel-based platforms and one for AMD-based platforms. www.ntpsoftware.com.
UltraBac upgrades backup software
The 8.0 release of UltraBac Software’s backup and disaster-recovery software includes new features such as UltraCopy for creating duplicate media for off-site storage, bar-code media pool support, differential image backup, and native 64-bit support for Intel and AMD processors. The UltraCopy feature allows duplication of tape- or disk-based backups to media for off-site removal and storage and enables consolidation of multiple disk or tape backups to a variety of removable storage media.
Differential image backup functionality allows users to perform full image backups on a periodic basis while differential image backups are performed daily. Pricing starts at $495 per server. www.ultrabac.com.
Abrevity launches analysis service
Abrevity, a start-up in San Jose, has launched a File Management and Storage Analysis service based on its FileBASE software technology. The service provides detailed storage resource analysis coupled with recommended actions to lower file management and storage costs by an average of 30% to 75%, according to company claims, while addressing compliance issues.
The software scans, queries, and analyzes file metadata resident on network storage devices and provides reports outlining details on file and storage usage and compliance risks.
Abrevity’s software is classified by some analysts as network file management (NFM) and is an alternative to storage resource management (SRM) software. Pricing starts at about $5,000. www.abrevity.com.