Hifn unveils capacity optimization cards

By Kevin Komiega

-- Hifn, which was recently acquired by Exar, is rolling out a new series of data protection cards capable of accelerating data de-duplication processes for primary and secondary storage capacity optimization (SCO).

The new Hifn Express DR 1600 series cards come in several different flavors with a range of performance points, including compression-only models and several cards that combine compression with data encryption and hashing acceleration technology for de-duplication.

The Express DR 1600 series includes six models to address the price-performance requirements for DAS, NAS and SAN applications such as replication and backup. The cards provide performance up to 1,800MBps, and the ability to scale performance by adding additional cards.

Hifn also introduced Unified API Software (UAS), which provides failover capabilities and end-to-end data protection. Using the software, the DR 1600 cards detect, isolate and prevent the propagation of corrupted data caused by silent disk errors, application interactions, and memory errors within a system. UAS also simplifies integration for OEMs and shortens time to market, according to Zack Mihalis, Exar's senior director of product marketing.

Mihalis says the hash acceleration for de-duplication technology combined with the data compression capabilities of the DR 1600 cards can reduce storage capacity requirements by 10:1 or more.

Exar expects primary storage and virtual tape library (VTL) vendors to begin shipping products with the compression-only models of the DR 1600 this summer. The more advanced cards with encryption, compression and hash acceleration should make their way to customers in about six months.

Mihalis says the performance, features and price points of the DR 1600 series could accelerate adoption of data reduction for primary storage.

"A lot of these features are going into primary storage right now. With the maximum throughput model [the 1,800MBps DR 1625], partners can perform both inline and post-processing de-duplication," he says.

Mihalis also claims that the DR 1600 is energy efficient, as the new cards consume 60% less power than previous generations.

All of the DR 1600 products support Windows and Linux.

OEM pricing for the Express DR 1600 series:

Compression only
--  DR 1600 (300MBps): $500
--  DR 1610 (900MBps): $1,000
--  DR 1620 (1,800MBps): $1,500

Compression, encryption and hash acceleration:
--  DR 1605 (300MBps): $750
--  DR 1615 (900MBps): $1,400
--  DR 1625 (1,800MBps): $2,000

Evaluation units are available now, with general availability set for July.

Related articles:
Hifn ships dual-function storage NIC
Primary storage optimization moves forward

This article was originally published on May 19, 2009