NEC upgrades HYDRAstor for long-term archiving

By Kevin Komiega

-- NEC is turning its HYDRAstor grid storage system into a long-term archiving platform with performance, security, availability, and management upgrades aimed at storing data for 100 years.

The new HYDRAstor features, available today, include in-flight data encryption, quota management, write once read many (WORM) capabilities, greater file system granularity for Distributed Resilient Data (DRD) protection, and a performance boost of more than 60%.

NEC also extended support for "application-aware" deduplication to IBM's Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM) and EMC's NetWorker backup application, in addition to existing deduplication support for CommVault's Simpana and Symantec's NetBackup. 

The application-aware deduplication technology analyzes incoming data streams in search of application-level metadata. Once identified, the metadata, which tends to have a negative impact on deduplication ratios, is filtered and processed separately from the data in an effort to speed backups and archiving operations.

NEC's director of product management, Gideon Senderov, says HYDRAstor aims to answer the quintessential archiving question: How do you maintain data integrity forever as the underlying infrastructure changes every few years?

"HYDRAstor allows you to transition across technologies as your grid grows. It's self-evolving capabilities allow you to refresh the technology below on a regular basis while peeling off older technologies on the back end without losing data," says Senderov

Senderov says the software enhancements work with HYDRAstor's "self-evolving" architecture to eliminate the need to migrate data to new archiving platforms over time.

In terms of performance, NEC has tweaked its software to make inter-node data transfer and communication more efficient. As a result, existing HS8-2000 grids can now perform at speeds up to 1.8TB per hour per Accelerator Node and up to 90TB per hour for the largest supported configuration of 55 Accelerator Nodes and 110 Storage Nodes.

Most of the HYDRAstor software enhancements are included under HYDRAstor's software maintenance. The performance enhancements, in-flight data encryption option for replication licenses, quota management, granular resiliency classes, and application-aware deduplication technology are all available to new and existing customers at no additional cost. The WORM capability, however, is a separately licensed feature.

NEC also introduced a series of new, lower-capacity models of HYDRAstor in 12TB, 24TB, and 36TB configurations.

Related articles:
NEC makes deduplication application-aware
Primary storage optimization moves forward
NEC unveils grid storage system

This article was originally published on September 15, 2009