Iron Mountain recently purchased 800 terabytes of IBM branded NetApp filers to the disappointment of its storage...
department, which after an extensive evaluation of Sun Microsystems' Nas gear, had its heart set on that product, SearchStorage.com has learned.
A Network Appliance (NetApp) shop with 700 terabytes already on the floor,
Then, unexpectedly to
"If I had my druthers, we wouldn't have made that decision… sometimes business decisions trump technology decisions," said Chris Rigby, director of storage operations in
According to multiple sources, IBM Global Services called
"We like to spend our tech dollars with partners that bring business to the company, it's just more beneficial to the top line," Rigby said. "There's more confidence in IBM GS's [Global Services] ability to sell our product than Sun."
However, he and others in the digital archiving unit at
The 5310 matched NetApp on replication, snapshot, write once, read many (Worm) disc features and came in at 15% cheaper. "The Procom device has intelligent Engenio [Technologies] controllers in it whereas NetApp is just JBOD cabled behind their filer head," according to Rigby. On the downside, he said Procom's "admin interfaces are not quite as mature" as NetApp's.
"We have some unique [storage] requirements," Rigby said. "Our archive has five to six billion files in it." The storage for this archive has to support CIFS, NFS and Worm protocols as well as replication.
For other users evaluating Nas products, it's worth noting that
Sun fought hard for the
Sun acquired Procom in May 2005 for $50m extending a licensing deal under which Procom's software powered Sun's StoreEdge 5000 series, including the 5310 Compliance Archiving System.
According to industry analysts, Procom's technology always had potential, but was never marketed very well. Dwindling sales and an eventual delisting from the Nasdaq in August 2003 for failing to file earnings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, solidified Procom's position at the bottom of the Nas heap.
In Sun's hands, analysts say the Procom technology has a chance of being revitalised and becoming a serious contender to NetApp. Given that Sun doesn't have to make all its money from Nas products, it could do some serious damage to high-end Nas prices and steal some market share in the process.