SNW product highlights, Day 1

By Kevin Komiega and Dave Simpson

—Over the next few days we'll be bringing you product highlights from the Storage Networking World (SNW) trade show in Orlando, FL.

Storage industry newcomer Ocarina Networks announced the availability of a new product that employs a unique take on data de-duplication—sort of. The company's online storage optimization solution applies techniques similar to data compression and de-duplication to online production data, resulting in up to a 10x reduction in capacity, according to company officials.

Ocarina's appliances use a three-step file-aware optimization process that extracts, correlates, and optimizes data to reduce the size of already compressed files.

The technology consists of the Ocarina Optimizer, a hardware appliance that reads files, optimizes them, and writes them back to storage, and the Ocarina Reader, which is a client-based software application that expands optimized files created by the Optimizer. The last piece of the puzzle is the Ocarina Manager user interface and management console.

Ocarina's technology is designed to work with any existing file-based storage systems and, because it takes an out-of-band, post-processing approach to data reduction, there are virtually no performance penalties (about 4 milliseconds of latency for file access), according to Carter George, Ocarina's vice president of products.

Dot Hill Systems announced a new version of its Series 2000 platforms—the 2530 SAS RAID array—marking the company's entry into the SAS market.

The 2U 2530 includes two 3Gbps SAS interfaces per controller attached to internal SAS or SATA disk drives with 1GB of mirrored cache per controller. The 12-drive 2530 can be expanded to 56 drives, with the option of mixing drive types in a single enclosure or in individual expansion trays for capacity that scales from 1.7TB to 56TB.

The array also features snapshots and volume-copy capabilities and comes standard with 16 snapshots with availability of up to 64 snapshots via an optional license. The product also includes high-availability features such as active-active controllers and support for MPIO.

Verari Systems introduced the SB5165XL StorageServer, a blade-based appliance that combines NAS and iSCSI SAN functionality. The appliances can be used with the company's BladeRack 2 XL platforms. The SB5165 includes an SB1165 StorageServer blade and up to two SB1056 disk blades providing up to 24TB of RAID-6 capacity. A single platform can include up to 24 StorageServers for 576TB of capacity. The systems are available from Verari's newly formed Storage Group division.

PMC-Sierra debuted its 6Gbps maxSAS Expanders at SNW. The PM8004 SXP 24x6GSec and PM8005 SXP 36x6Gsec SAS-2 expanders, which are essentially embedded switches that route any source to any destination, are designed to boost performance, manageability, and security in applications such as virtualization, virtual tape libraries (VTLs), and server-based RAID.

The expanders, together with PMC-Sierra's Tachyon protocol controllers, SRC RAID controllers, and SPS active-active multiplexers, comprise a chipset family for 6Gbps SAS storage systems.

The SXP 24x6GSec and SXP 36x6Gsec, 24-, and 36-port 6Gbps SAS expanders, are the
fourth generation of PMC-Sierra's maxSAS expander switch product line. The products support SAS-2 multiplexing, allowing SAS and SATA drives to take advantage of improved bandwidth.

Mellanox Technologies announced that its ConnectX EN adapters support Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) traffic with Priority Based Flow Control. The ConnectX EN Dual-Port 10GigE Single-Chip Adapter with FCoE provides FCoE functionality to enable LAN and Fibre Channel SAN consolidation over Ethernet networks.

The ConnectX adapters can deliver server-to-server and server-to-storage connectivity using both InfiniBand and 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10GbE) in one chip.

The ConnectX EN adapter includes support for both TCP/IP stateless offload and Fibre Channel transport in hardware. The FCoE hardware offload includes processing of all CPU-intensive Fibre Channel and SCSI processing tasks as currently available in high-performance Fibre Channel host bus adapters (HBAs), avoiding per-packet processing in software.

ConnectX EN dual-port FCoE adapters, with support for PCI-Express 2.0, are available with various media interconnect support, including XFP, SFP+, CX4, and 10GBaseT.

Movidis unveiled the Universal Networked Storage (UNS) system for the company's x16 Network Appliance Platform (NAP). The UNS is a software package that combines a multi-core network appliance platform with open source software to create a turnkey storage system for OEMs.

The Movidis NAP uses 16-core OCTEON CN38xx and CN58xx MIPS processors from Cavium Networks to create an OEM platform for NFS, Samba, and iSCSI applications.

The UNS software is pre-loaded on the NAP's on-board flash.

The main system includes a motherboard and a SATA/SAS expander that allows the NAP to control up to 28 drives. The system can be configured to support all networked storage protocols. Pricing for the Movidis x16 NAP with UNS starts at $2,395 in OEM quantities.

This article was originally published on April 08, 2008