Storage news weekly compilation:mainframe VTL, virtualisation, San and more

IBM added virtual tape library and tape products for mainframes and says the latest version of SVC is 75% faster than the previous release.

IBM brushes up mainframe VTL, touts SVC performance
In separate announcements this week, IBM announced new virtual tape library (VTL) offerings for mainframe environments and touted its SPC benchmark results for the storage area network (San) Volume Controller (SVC) storage virtualisation product.

The new version of its mainframe VTL, the Virtualisation Engine TS7740, will now allow users, across up to three separate sites, to share tape data. A 1 terabyte (TB) version of the TS7740 has also been added to be marketed to small businesses. Another update aimed at midsized businesses is the new TS2230 Tape Drive Express Model H3S LTO-3 half height, which will become available on 3 August. Mainframe users will also be able to attach their systems to the self-encrypting T1120 tape controller as of Aug. 31. IBM's new midrange storage servers, the DS3000 and DS3400 DC, both of which have built-in DC power, will be marketed to oil, gas and telecom customers .

IBM also announced that the latest version of SVC has been clocked by the Storage Performance Council (SPC) at 75% faster than its predecessor, with an SPC-1 (single workload result) of 272,505 IOPS. During a SPC-2 test, with three workloads, the system performed at 7,084 megabytes per second (MBps), 50% faster than the previous version.

EMC prices VMware shares
EMC announced this week that 33 million shares of server virtualisation subsidiary VMware will be priced in an initial public offering (IPO) at between $23 and $25 per share. EMC will remain the majority owner of VMware, but Intel has also declared its intention to buy a partial stake in the company, with an estimated worth of $218.5 million.

AT&T deploys Sun Thumper
Sun announced that AT&T will use the Sun Fire X4600 (Thumper) storage server in branch offices to deliver a new IP-based television service called AT&T U-verse TV. AT&T will also deploy Sun StorageTek arrays, but which ones weren't specified. A press release said the two companies have a long-standing relationship.

In a separate announcement, Sun and Cluster File Systems announced they will be integrating OpenSolaris ZFS with the Lustre parallel filesystem. "Our customers are asking for features in Lustre servers which are available through the use of OpenSolaris ZFS. This will shorten our time to market with future versions of our product that scale to trillions of files and exabytes of storage with … enhanced storage management [features]," said Peter Braam, CEO of Cluster File Systems, in a press release.

Quantum launches removable disc
Quantum announced the GoVault Data Protection Solution, a removable disc backup system that will be marketed to small businesses and branch offices, The product includes a tabletop or server-embedded intelligent dock, two disc cartridges, backup software and data deduplication. The product is available now at a manufacturer suggested retail price (MSRP) of $400 for an internal server dock, two 40 GB cartridges, SATA II cabling and software. Cartridges begin at $100 and are available in 40 GB, 80 GB, 120 GB and 160 GB capacities.

Logistics company outsources to Digitiliti
Managed service provider Digitiliti announced that Minnesota-based Koch Logistics chose its service over replacing tape library equipment and upgrading software. The company sends 2 TB per day over a T1 connection, which Digitiliti's onsite appliance compresses to around 900 GB.

Arkeia GAs EdgeFort
Arkeia announced the general availability of its EdgeFort product, originally preannounced at Storage Networking World (SNW) this spring. EdgeFort is an appliance that will allow backup administrators to remotely manage backup operations at remote sites without sending data back to headquarters over the WAN. For more commentary on the product, see this post by Jerome Wendt on our Storage Soup blog.

QLogic, HDS certify iSCSI bundle with Microsoft
QLogic and Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) announced that their iSCSI bundle, which combines QLogic iSCSI host bus adapters (HBA) with HDS Workgroup Modular Storage (WMS) or Adaptable Modular Storage (AMS) systems, has been certified by Microsoft as a Simple San. However, not everyone in the industry thinks it's so simple: "I would question the use of iSCSI HBAs," said Tony Asaro, senior analyst with the Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG). "Most of the customers we've talked to aren't using HBAs when they deploy iSCSI."

Emulex partners with 3Leaf, gets into Linux
Server virtualisation player 3Leaf SystemsTM announced that it will incorporate Emulex 4 Gbps LightPulse HBAs into its V-8000TM Virtual I/O Server. In a separate announcement, Emulex also said a driver for its virtual HBA has been incorporated into the Linux kernel. This means that open source Xen virtual servers can each see a dedicated partition of the HBA.

Cisco, Microsoft, EMC band together to sell to government
Cisco, Microsoft and EMC announced that they've founded the Secure Information Sharing Architecture (SISA) alliance, which will put together product packages that will allow role-based access to shared content among government agencies. Other vendors adding pieces to the package include Liquid Machines, Swan Island Networks and Titus Labs.

MicroNet boosts PlatinumNAS
MicroNet announced new software capabilities for its small and midsized business (SMB)/small office/home office (SOHO) network attached storage ( NAS) appliance, called PlatinumNAS. New features include automated shutdown after business hours, an unattended download scheduler, iTunes music server function and USB expansion slots.

Sanbolic adds network cacheing to San filesystem
Sanbolic announced that its Melio filesystem will now allow San filesystem clients to queue operations, such as file open, file attributes updates and file data write via a network redirector. The company claims this will boost performance, as network communication is no longer required for each operation in the filesystem.

Digistore ships 100,000 CD libraries
Digistore Solutions announced that it has shipped its 100,000th unit in its Centurion line of CD storage devices since the company's launch at the end of 2003.

Isilon branching into backup?
Clustered NAS maker Isilon announced that its IQ storage clusters have been certified as compatible with NetBackup through NDMP.

Panasas pumps up clusters
Panasas announced the addition of the 15 TB ActiveStor 3150 to its ActiveStor 3000 parallel storage cluster product line. Each 4U, 15 TB capacity shelf can be stacked together for up to 150 TBs in a single-rack system.

DataDirect Networks adds SATA checker
DataDirect Networks announced that version 3.08 of its Silicon Storage Appliance (S2A) management software will include a new feature, called SATAssure, which detects and corrects data corruption on SATA discs by performing parity checking on read I/Os.

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