Industry News and Analysis

NetApp moves toward blade architecture
With the recent release of its FAS200 "unified storage" system, Network Appliance is moving toward a blade architecture by packaging its operating system, storage controller, and software on a 9-inch card installed in a storage shelf.
EMC debuts Windows-based NAS
Next month, EMC will begin shipping its first network-attached storage (NAS) device based on Microsoft's Windows Storage Server 2003. Several other OEMs also recently released products based on Microsoft's new operating system.
Compliance beyond e-mail: Approaches for structured data
Many IT managers are concerned about the legal and regulatory compliance issues posed by electronic documents and e-mail. However, they may not realize that these risks and requirements also apply to the structured data in their accounting and ERP applications. With the advent of new technology, companies can meet these requirements using approaches that minimize the cost of compliance.
Cisco targets Brocade, McData
Earlier this week, Cisco rounded out its Fibre Channel switch line with 20-port and 40-port MDS 9100 series fabric switches. Previously, the MDS 9216 was the company's low-end offering. However, the 9216 can be scaled from 16 to 32 or 48 ports and can handle multiple protocols and add-in line cards. In contrast, the 20-port 9120 and 40-port 9140 are fixed-configuration devices that support only Fibre Channel (1Gbps or 2Gbps).
Distributors report low demand for iSCSI
Storage distributors say demand for iSCSI products remains weak for several reasons, including lack of products, perceived performance limitations, interoperability concerns, and a general lack of understanding about the potential benefits of iSCSI in the reseller and end-user communities.
IP storage: The year in review
This has been an exciting year for IP storage, as the industry has gone from protocols to standards-based interoperable products and end-user deployments. This article reviews progress to date and previews what to expect over the next six months.
Users look forward to fabric-based intelligence
Despite the fact that the technology will not be available from major vendors until next year, end users are surprisingly interested in running storage applications in fabrics, as opposed to hosts or storage subsystems.
The last–and first–SSP calls it quits
StorageNetworks, which pioneered the ill-fated storage service provider (SSP) market, recently succumbed when its board of directors approved a plan to liquidate the company after failing to find a buyer after an extensive search.
Tape- vs. disk-based backup, part III
There are a number of really snazzy backup technologies on the market today, and a number of other options will soon be available.
Start-up claims low-cost replication
This month, San Jose-based Kashya began shipments of a data replication product that includes a full range of replication options for linking heterogeneous storage systems over long distances.
SRM lays the groundwork for storage management
According to the Gartner consulting firm, storage resource management (SRM) software includes functions such as capacity and performance reporting and analysis, capacity/performance management automation, storage provisioning, storage management product integration, and application integration.
SATA, not SAS, will shake things up
Most IT managers are familiar with author Clay Christensen and his concept of "disruptive technologies." He has shown in numerous case studies how new, "good-enough" technologies can disrupt mature, high-margin industries.
Overland enters disk-based backup market
Overland Storage recently took further steps to expand beyond its tape backup business with the announcement of its first disk-based backup appliances—the REO Series B2000 and R2000.
Easing e-mail management headaches
E-mail is one of IT's greatest challenges from both a management and data-protection standpoint. And that's no surprise given the fact that businesses are sending more than 2.75 trillion e-mails per year, according to the Gartner consulting firm.
Guidelines for ensuring storage security
IT managers have always been concerned about the security of their systems. Originally, the focus was on physical security, limiting access to mainframes through swipe cards and providing audit trails though sign-in sheets.
Extending storage over WANs
The distributed nature of IT and a heightened concern for disaster recovery and business continuity have combined to make it common today for enterprises to connect their data storage over distance. Virtually any size organization recognizes the need to have at least one copy of its data in a location outside its main data center.
Distributors report low demand for iSCSI
Storage distributors say demand for iSCSI products remains weak for several reasons, including lack of products, perceived performance limitations, interoperability concerns, and a general lack of understanding about the potential benefits of iSCSI in the reseller and end-user communities.
Data protection still comes first
The overriding sentiment among end users at this spring's Storage Networking World conference was delight that the vendor community hadn't introduced any new acronyms since the fall conference.
Business continuity still on center stage
This issue includes the second installment in our four-part special series on business continuity and disaster recovery. BC/DR has always been a top IT priority at large organizations. And two years ago this month, it became a priority for all organizations.
Auto-provisioning rises to top of user 'wish list'
Auto-provisioning may sound too good to be true, but it isn't. A variety of products are available to help end users streamline the time-consuming and tedious task of provisioning resources (e.g., heterogeneous disk arrays) within storage area networks (SANs), and many more are on the way.
Are you ready for a 'recovery disaster?'
Cataclysmic events are often required to permanently change human behavior and cultures. Even corporate cultures can be slow to adapt without a sufficient catalyst. The terrorist attacks in 2001 caused an immediate, serious assessment by nearly every IT organization of their disaster preparedness.
Are TOEs a panacea for backup performance?
The challenge of ever-shrinking backup windows for exponentially growing data is expanding beyond central data centers to departments across most corporations.
3PAR advocates 'thin provisioning'
At least one vendor would like you to buy fewer disks. Hoping to solve the common "allocated-but-unused capacity" problem, 3PAR has introduced Thin Provisioning in the latest release of its InForm operating software.
XIOtech introduces 'storage clustering'
Disk array vendor XIOtech recently introduced what analysts say is a unique architecture that essentially decouples controllers and disk arrays on a Fibre Channel storage network.