By Dave Simpson
—On Wednesday, Nexsan Technologies is expected to announce a RAID array designed specifically for the Apple Xserve server/storage market. The company is emphasizing density and energy efficiency, as well as Xserve look and feel (management software GUI and hardware aesthetics).
Configured with 42 1TB SATA drives, Nexsan's SATABeast Xi packs up to 42TB in a 4U form factor. The RAID array has four external iSCSI ports and four Fibre Channel ports (two of each per controller in a dual-controller configuration).
For energy efficiency, the SATABeast Xi can be configured with Nexsan's AutoMAID (massive array of idle disks) technology, which powers down (but not off) drives that are not in use in order to conserve energy. AutoMAID is available on Nexsan's other SATABeast RAID array models. Bob Woolery, Nexsan's senior vice president of marketing, estimates that approximately 30% of the company's current customers are using the AutoMAID option.
The SATABeast Xi is optimized for use with Apple's Fibre Channel implementation, and Nexsan claims wire-speed performance for both 4Gbps Fibre Channel and 1Gbps iSCSI. Nexsan is positioning the array for either primary storage (and applications such as uncompressed real-time HDTV, multi-stream and analog TV signals, and HD video editing) or secondary storage applications (such as disk-to-disk backup). The subsystem supports RAID 0, 1, 5, 6 (dual parity), 10, 30, and 50.
The SATABeast Xi will be available in March through Nexsan's reseller channel, with pricing starting at about $1,200 per terabyte.
For more information on iSCSI, see iSCSI shines in virtual servers, blades.