BridgeHead expands in the US

By Ann Silverthorn

—UK-based BridgeHead Software brought its HT FileStore software to the US this week. HT FileStore is a policy-based, multi-platform storage management module that fits into BridgeHead's HT ISM (Integrated Storage Management) suite, which addresses backup, archival, replication, and media management.

This is not BridgeHead's first foray into the US market. In fact, the company's storage software has its roots in the US, being part of MTI before MTI became a storage solutions integrator.

HT FileStor is a storage resource management (SRM) tool that handles unstructured data. It copies data into a repository and is device-agnostic. Users can then have three copies of the data if required—one on tier-two storage at the local site for quick access, a second copy at a disaster-recovery site, and a third copy on write-once, read-many (WORM) media for compliance purposes.

Once HT FileStor has placed data into this multimedia topology, it can come back from point zero to any point in the future, with user-defined rules that determine what is done with the primary instance copy. The software looks at access attributes and characteristics and automatically decides whether it should be stubbed to save primary disk space. When it's stubbed it looks like it's on primary disk, but is read from the most convenient location in the repository. HT FileStor can migrate, delete, and compress data.

Patrick Dowling, senior vice president of corporate marketing at BridgeHead, says HT FileStor is different from drive-letter hierarchical storage management (HSM) software. "Typical drive-letter HSM migrates data to another location. We can do that, but we don't have to move the primary instance," Dowling explains. "We can elect to do it later. We also don't just put one copy on tier-two storage. It's any combination of stores that the user requires. A problem HSM users have with disk grooming is a breakdown in the efficiency of how they manage back-end copies of data. Backup and recovery is a nightmare with HSM. For example, users want to back up an EMC Centera, a job that may run 28 hours, with standard backup tools. We bypass that need, because HT FileStor integrates all the back-end storage management requirements."

BridgeHead's HT FileStore is available from its resellers. Pricing ranges from $5 to $15 per gigabyte.

This article was originally published on October 19, 2005