Promise adds storage services appliance

By Dave Simpson

– Reacting to requests from its channel partners, Promise Technology today announced the VTrak S3000 appliance, which includes a variety of storage services, including volume virtualization, thin provisioning, snapshots, volume copy, remote replication, data migration, WAN optimization and SSD caching software. Shipments are expected next month.

The S3000 appliance can connect to Promise's VTrak series of RAID arrays via backend connections. It can also be used in heterogeneous environments with disk arrays from other vendors.

Prior to the introduction of the S3000, Promise and its channel partners relied on third parties for storage services.

"Our channel partners were pushing for us to offer our own services and support, so they could have one throat to choke," says Ray Bahar, vice president of sales and marketing at Promise.

Grouped into three application/benefit categories, the S3000 data services enable:

--Storage consolidation and virtualization for Fibre Channel or iSCSI SANs
--Disaster recovery through application-aware snapshots, mirroring and replication
--Fail-over and fail-back functionality

The 1U appliance comes with two 10Gbps iSCSI interfaces and three additional host interface configuration options: four 1Gbps iSCSI connections, two or four 8Gbps Fibre Channel connections, or two 10Gbps iSCSI host interfaces.

On the backend storage side, the VTrak S3000 includes 16 6Gbps SAS connections, or, two or four 8Gbps Fibre Channel connections.

The appliance also includes dual Nehalem CPUs and a mirrored boot SATA drive. Two appliances can be linked for active-active fault tolerance and performance improvements.

According to Bahar, key target markets/applications for the S3000 data services appliance include storage and server virtualization, business continuity, A/V broadcast and post production and cloud computing. (Promise reportedly has a cloud storage provider customer with more than 70PB of capacity, all on Promise disk arrays.)

A configuration with one VTrak S3000 appliance, all storage services applications and 32TB of VTrak RAID capacity is priced at $40,000. Pricing for the S3000 appliance does not depend on backend capacity.

One optional application is Promise's HyperCache software, which facilitates using solid-state disk (SSD) drives as a cache by boosting read/write performance. Promise's disk arrays can be configured with SSDs from a variety of vendors, including Intel and STEC.

Related articles:
LSI expands in channel with external RAID
LSI debuts 6Gbps SAS switches
PMC girds for channel battles, opportunities (blog post)

This article was originally published on July 06, 2010