Storage announcements from CeBIT

By Ann Silverthorn

—The sprawling CeBIT show is taking place this week in Hannover, Germany, and show organizers claim 5,845 exhibitors from 77 countries. Here's a sampling of storage-related news from the show:

Germany-based Open-E (which recently opened a second headquarters in the US) used CeBIT to launch the fourth generation of its Data Storage Server (DSS) IP SAN management software, which includes four new features. An automatic fail-over capability increases data availability through fault tolerance. Automatic fail-over uses virtual IP addresses via the iSCSI protocol and allows users to automatically switch over to a secondary storage server in the event of a failure, or scheduled maintenance, on a primary server.

The new software release also includes write-once, read-many (WORM) functionality, and support for the Network Data Management Protocol (NDMP), which accelerates the backup-and-restore capabilities. Lastly, DSS now supports a variety of languages for management, including English, German, Russian, and Japanese.

AIC-PSG (Advanced Industrial Computer—Platform Solutions Group), a manufacturer of rack-mount server and storage enclosures, introduced its MAX I/O technology and showcased its SAS product line and PSG motherboards at CeBIT. The PCIe-based MAX I/O technology utilizes Intel's Memory Controller Hub (MCH), eliminating the need for switches.

In addition, AIC partnered with Seagate in demonstrations of enterprise-, SMB-, and SOHO-level SAS/SATA JBOD subsystems. Seagate's Cheetah 15K.5, Savvio 15K, and Barracuda ES2 drives were integrated in an AIC SAS/SATA subsystem—the XJ-SA12-005 (5-bay tower)—and daisy-chained to an XJ-SA01-004-A (4-bay, 3.5-inch drives) and XJ-SA01-008-A (8-bay, 2.5-inch drives) subsystem.

Separately, Seagate announced shipments of its Cheetah 15K.6 disk drives at CeBIT. The 3.5-inch, 15,000rpm drives are available with SAS or Fibre Channel interfaces, and in capacities of 147GB, 300GB, or 450GB.

Adaptec unveiled the RAID Series 5 Unified Serial controller family, which has up to 28 ports (24 internal and four external). The controllers support as many as 256 SATA or SAS drives per system for a total capacity of up to 200TB. The x8 PCIe controllers are based on Intel's IOP348 I/O processor and XScale technology. Adaptec claims performance of up to 250,000 I/Os per second and throughput of 1.2GBps.

MSRP pricing for Adaptec's Series 5 controllers ranges from $425 for model 5405 with four internal ports to $1,595 for model 52445 with 24 internal ports and four external ports.

Applied Micro Circuits Corp. (AMCC) showcased recent advances in its 3ware line of SAS/SATA RAID controllers with three in-booth demonstrations. One demo showcased VMware support on a 3ware 9690SA SAS/SATA controller in a Supermicro enclosure with an LSI SAS expander and support for virtualization and server consolidation.

Another demonstration spotlighted the company's high-performance Advanced Content Streaming (ACS) feature on a 3ware 9650SE SATA II RAID controller in an AIC SATA enclosure. AMCC claims that new caching algorithms substantially enhance performance in applications that stream sequential data, such as video playback and editing.

The third demonstration featured both a 3ware 9690SA SAS and 9650SE SATA controller installed in a Mac Pro system running Mac OS X Leopard and Time Machine software. The SATA controller was connected to a 3ware Sidecar RAID device.

Atto Technology showcased its ExpressSAS RAID adapters and FastStream Storage Controller appliances at CeBIT and announced its 8Gbps Celerity Fibre Channel host bus adapter (HBA) line. The 8Gbps Celerity adapters will be available in single-, dual-, and quad-channel versions and will include the company's Advanced Data Streaming (ADS) technology for performance acceleration.

The ExpressSAS demonstration featured Atto's proprietary DVRAID technology, which provides parity protection in high-bandwidth environments. The ExpressSAS RAID adapters support SAS/SATA drive connectivity and 3Gbps per port.

DataCore announced a number of new storage virtualization solutions for VMware environments, including the SANharmony virtualization platform, which integrates management of both NAS and SAN storage. In addition, DataCore announced the enhanced Virtual Infrastructure Foundation PLUS (VIF+) package, which now provides snapshot technology, and offers Fibre Channel support together with iSCSI support and thin provisioning. Other announcements included a range of new high-availability and disaster-recovery packages based on the company's SANmelody and SANsymphony platforms. All of DataCore's software can run on physical or virtual servers, including virtualization software from VMware, Microsoft, Oracle, Citrix, Sun, and Virtual Iron.

Also at CeBIT, Iomega announced its new REV 120GB Backup Drive, the third generation of its REV technology. Versions with external USB 2.0 and internal SATA interfaces are due next month, and a version with an ATAPI interface is due "mid-year." The drives are designed to combine the performance of hard drives with the removability of tape. Iomega claims to have shipped more than 350,000 REV drives and more than two million disks.

This article was originally published on March 07, 2008