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2001, July - week 5, news archive

Megabyte's selection of storage news
Megabyte was thinking that a week is an awfully long time in the storage market

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Fountain Valley, CA July 31, 2001 – StorCase Technology, Inc. has announced a branch outsourcing agreement with Keating Technologies, Inc., Canada's leading branch-outsourcing service to the high technology industry.

"This partnership will provide our customers with convenient in-country sales, marketing and support services. Keating's expertise will help us accelerate our growth plans within the Canadian territory." - Deborah Hartson, Director of Sales and Marketing for StorCase.

StorCase Technology, a spin-off of Kingston Technology Company, manufactures plug-and-play, fixed and removable storage enclosures. By integrating drives, StorCase's value-add resellers provide the entertainment, telecommunications, back office and government sectors with solutions that accommodate the simplest desktop applications to the most complex RAID, SAN and NAS storage implementations. StorCase products include the Data Express®, Data Silo®, Data Stacker®, InfoStation™ and Rhino®JR enclosures.

"StorCase's quality products and services offer tremendous value to Canadian VARs and their customers", said Larry J. Keating, President and Chief Executive Officer of Keating Technologies. "StorCase's outstanding seven-year warranty and 24x7 technical support complement an impressive product line and offer the ability to penetrate major end-users such as NASA and the Canadian Government", added Keating. ...StorCase Technology profile

Meridian, ID, July 31, 2001 - Crucial Technology, a wholly owned subsidiary of Micron Technology, today introduced its Memory Calculator, a patent-pending online tool that helps system builders determine how much RAM they need to achieve peak performance with various motherboards and processors. Online users select a motherboard, processor, operating system, and benchmark test. In return, the Memory Calculator displays a graph of benchmark results for that system, showing how it performed with different amounts of RAM.

"With so many different minimum RAM requirements and recommendations issued by hardware and software manufacturers, it can be tricky figuring out how much memory you really need," said Mike Sanor, Crucial's Technical Support Manager. "Crucial's Memory Calculator eliminates that confusion and shows our customers what memory configuration benefits their system."

The Memory Calculator is available online, free of charge. It contains results from over 800 tests of more than 120 unique system configurations in Crucial's Performance Labs. The tests were performed on a wide range of motherboards that utilize single data rate (SDR) SDRAM and double date rate (DDR) SDRAM memory technology. Crucial continually updates the Memory Calculator as new technologies emerge. Users can also request additional systems in the Memory Calculator through an online form. ...Micron Technology profile

Marlborough, Massachusetts, July 31, 2001 - Cereva Networks Inc. today announced that it has joined with other leaders of the storage networking industry as a charter member of the SNIA's Supported Solutions Forum (SSF). This newly formed initiative, announced last month, aims to develop multi-vendor storage networking solutions that are jointly qualified and mutually supported, and has been widely heralded by analysts as a major step forward in facilitating the enterprise-wide deployment of storage network solutions. ...Cereva Networks profile, ...SNIA profile

Editor's comments:- other companies which have also told us today that they have joined the SNIA SSF include:- ADIC, Gadzoox Networks, INRANGE Technologies and Quantum|ATL

Hopkinton, Mass.- July 31, 2001 - EMC Corporation today added a new dimension to its networked information storage leadership with announcement of significant new enhancements to EMC® Data Manager (EDM™), the industry's fastest and most scalable backup and restore solution for open systems. Today's announcements deliver two critical new EDM capabilities that address customers' need for high-performance and cost-effective information backup and restore within today's large, complex NAS and SAN environments. The enhancements include:
  • The ability to perform simultaneous NFS (UNIX) and CIFS (Windows NT) backups, while maintaining all of EDM's rich backup and restore functionality, and
  • The ability to choose the highest-performance path — either NAS or SAN — for specific file backups. This advanced feature is achieved through EDM support for EMC Celerra™ HighRoad™ software.
"More than 70% of information storage will be networked within a few years, spelling major opportunity for vendors that deliver rich, high performance backup and restore for all information types," said Chuck Hollis, EMC's Vice President of Products and Markets. "Through enhancements to EDM, new backup and recovery applications and integration with key backup enablers, EMC will continue to deliver the most comprehensive solutions to address the complete spectrum of our customers' recovery time objectives." ...EMC profile

SAN FRANCISCO, July 31, 2001 - Xythos Software Inc. has announced the appointment of Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) Chief Operating Officer Dave Roberson to its Board of Directors.

"I'm very pleased to serve in this capacity at Xythos and be part of what I see as the future of networked storage management", said Roberson. "The explosion of business data has created an immediate need for intelligent file systems. Xythos is leading the way in delivering Internet-ready file servers that help businesses easily access and share information from anywhere in the world."
Other news on this page

StorCase Technology Expands Canadian Market Coverage Through Agreement with Keating Technologies

Crucial Technology's Web Site Features Memory Calculator for System Builders

Cereva Joins Newly Formed SNIA Forum for Supported Storage Networking Solutions

EMC Delivers Simultaneous Unix & NT Backups With "NAS" or "SAN" Path Selection

Xythos Software Announces Appointment of Dave Roberson to Board of Directors

Tricord Lunar Flare™ NAS Now Available in the UK from Solution Centre Ltd

Memorex Bundles NTI's Filecd 2.0 Software with Pocket 8cm and Full-Size CD-RW Media

NSI Software Named Microsoft Gold Certified Partner

XIOtech SAN Users to Reap Benefits of the World's Fastest Disc Drive

Legato NetWorker is First to be Qualified with Nishan Systems IPS 3000 Series IP Storage Switches in Heterogeneous Environments

Vitesse and Vixel Create 12 Channel, 2Gb/s Fibre Channel Loop Switch IC for SANs

BakBone Software Introduces Netvault Suite of Online Backup Modules for IBM DB2 and Lotus Notes

Tandberg Data manufactured Super DLT tape drives now available

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Terrorbyte wanted to publish his autobiography. He knew Megabyte was an editor of some publication or other so he took him out to lunch and asked for his advice.

Re: Shopping Days Till Christmas

Did you realise there are less than 160 shopping days till next Christmas?

The reason I mention this, so early in the year, is that in previous years the seasonal craze for Playstations, plastic characters from movies like Toy Story, or fads like Pokemon has meant that demand outstripped supply, and many would-be purchasers were left empty handed. And you know how embarrassing it can be explaining why you had to make a last minute subtitution. So, if you've got your eyes set on a nice tasty storage company to acquire it's better to get in early before all the best ones have gone.

We notice a lot of things here at the mouse site, which are too dull for most of you to worry about, but when we start to see patterns, we'll try and let you know.

Now here's an interesting calculation for you, if you're planning to close the year with some more assets under your corporate belt. I think "assets" sounds so much better than "scalps" in a mergers and acquisitions context, don't you? At the time of writing, about 5 storage companies every week are being acquired, change their name or go out of business. I expect this trend to accelerate, because the market conditions in the US mean that the whole IT market is a lot more competitive than it used to be, with everyone chasing after an endangered species, called "customers". Also banks and venture capitalists have been feeling the squeeze themselves, and are not so likely to let a company trade on for another 3 months or so in the hope that "things will get better". If you also factor into this calculation that around a third of the venture capital backed storage startups funded since January 2000, will probably have to be acquired or do IPO's to keep their investors happy, then my estimate is that over 130 storage companies will have disappeared from the shopping cart between now and Christmas, so now's the time to start looking at them, while they're still fresh.

What sort of companies are available? Well storage software companies, RAID companies and VARS seem to head the list, based on historic spending patterns. But really the selection is as wide as the whole industry, and includes semiconductor companies, adapter card companies, fibre-channel switch makers...

No product category is imune.

Now the storage market is in a lot better shape than the PC market. You'd have to be nuts to buy a PC company right now, and we assume that most of them will be left on the shelf and probably end up being recycled as cheap DVD players or buried in the ground as landfill.

You may be thinking:- this is not the thing for you. And who buys all this stuff anyway?

Well companies, which have bought a lot of storage companies recently include:- INRANGE Technologies, LSI Logic and Sun Microsystems. But even staid old EMC has bought a couple. Companies which are profitable and have a lot of cash are the most likely shoppers. You can't use your credit card for this kind of transaction.

If your company may be on the block shortly, you can take a look at who's been buying what in our acquired companies list. Remember they might not want two the same. And if you're planning a bit of empire building before the recession ends and prices go up again now's the time to start looking, before the rush.
And for the rest of us, who are more interested in buying a disk drive than a disk drive company? It will just have to remain a spectator sport.

But the end result will be better products from suppliers who will still be around in the long term. And that benefits everyone.
SBS Technologies
SBS Technologies, Inc. is a leading designer and manufacturer of standard bus embedded computer components for CompactPCI, VME, embedded PC and custom standalone applications.

A 20-year veteran of Hitachi Data Systems, Roberson has served as a leader in all aspects of its business including IT Services, Finance, Human Resources, Training, Organizational Development and others. Roberson was responsible for steering Hitachi Data Systems from a primarily Japanese company, to a $2 billion global powerhouse delivering enterprise-ready storage solutions to customers in 43 countries.

"We are pleased to have Mr. Roberson join our Board", said Kevin Wiggen, Xythos CEO and Co-founder. "With more than 20 years of experience in building Hitachi Data Systems into one of the market leaders in enterprise data and storage management, Mr. Roberson's vision will prove invaluable to Xythos."
news image - Dave Roberson
Roberson received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Social Ecology from the University of California, Irvine. He is a graduate of Golden Gate University School of Law in San Francisco, and a member of the State Bar of California. He also studied Financial Management at Harvard Business School. Roberson joins the Board of Xythos Software, Inc., a San Francisco-based file management software company, whose WebFile Server 3.0 product delivers secure, Internet-ready file access and sharing from any SAN or NAS solution in a wide array of data center environments.

With a recent $6 million in funding and multiple Fortune 500 customers in various stages of evaluating WFS 3.0, Xythos is making major inroads into the enterprise storage market. ...Hitachi Data Systems profile, ...Xythos profile

Basingstoke, UK - July 31, 2001 - Solution Centre Ltd. - announced the general availability of the Tricord Lunar Flare™ NAS product, the industry's first clustered server appliance, into the UK. Radically easy to deploy, manage and grow, Lunar Flare NAS™ allows administrators to add storage with no downtime, no user interruption and nearly effortless administration. Lunar Flare NAS™ also offers built-in redundancy, providing a high level of fault tolerance at an affordable price point. ...Solution Centre profile, ...Tricord Systems profile

July 30, 2001 - Tustin, CA - Memorex and NewTech Infosystems (NTI) have announced that Memorex will bundle NTI's FileCD 2.0 high-performance packet-writing software with its 8cm Pocket and full-size CD-RW media. With FileCD 2.0, storing data on high-capacity CD-RW media is as quick, easy and affordable as copying to a floppy disk. Memorex will bundle FileCD 2.0 on its 10-spindle 8cm Pocket, and 5-pack, 10-pack and 25-spindle full-size CD-RW media. Each of these configurations includes a bonus CD containing NTI FileCD 2.0 for installation on the user's computer.

"We are witnessing the replacement of the floppy/Zip by CD-RW technology. Users are demanding high-capacity removable storage that is as convenient and easy to use as a floppy -- and they don't want to pay an arm and a leg for it," said Bill Yao, president and CEO of NTI. "Bundled with NTI FileCD 2.0 software, Pocket CD-RW is the perfect high-capacity replacement for floppy or Zip storage."

"Pocket CD-RW media is smaller than a floppy diskette, but it contains over 160MB of formatted storage -- well over 100 times as much as a floppy," said Michael Golacinski, president of Memorex. "It is durable and cost-effective, can be rewritten over and over, and is compatible with virtually any CD-ROM drive. Because of these powerful attributes, we expect significant growth in the 8cm Pocket CD-RW segment over the next year. For users requiring even more storage, our full-size CD-RW media stores over 500MB of formatted data, and its cost per MB is better than either floppy or Zip."

FileCD 2.0 sports an intuitive user interface and makes storing data on a CD as easy as storing it on a floppy. It provides the option of copying or moving files to a CD via the Windows "Send To" function -- or 'dragging-and-dropping' from Windows Explorer or the FileCD window. FileCD 2.0 features include fast 'Full Format' and 'Erase' as well as File 'Delete', 'Rename' and 'Copy'. FileCD 2.0 offers reliable support for UDF 1.5 (the emerging standard for optical media) as well as cross-platform ISO formats. In either format, FileCD operates reliably in Windows 95/98/Me/NT/2000/XP environments. ...Memorex profile, ...NewTech Infosystems profile

Hoboken, N.J., July 30, 2001 - NSI Software today announced it has been named a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner, one of the highest levels of distinction awarded by Microsoft to its partners. To achieve Gold Partner status, NSI Software's Double-Take' product met Microsoft's stringent "Certified for Windows 2000" requirements. Becoming a Gold Certified Partner provides IT organizations a guarantee that NSI Software develops reliable data protection solutions that operate seamlessly on Microsoft enterprise platforms and eliminates the risks associated with implementing new applications.

Microsoft's Gold Certified Partner Program removes the guesswork for customers by identifying companies that have met a higher set of standards and proven their commitment to developing high-quality, reliable products that complement existing and future Microsoft technologies. To gain Microsoft Gold Certified Partner status and become the first data replication product to secure the "Certified for Windows 2000" logo, NSI Software's Double-Take product underwent rigorous testing by a third-party organization. NSI Software has demonstrated its superiority in deploying Microsoft technology-based solutions to a number of enterprise customers.

"The primary objectives of the Microsoft Gold Certified Partner Program are to make it easier for Microsoft customers to identify partners who have proven their expertise in working with Microsoft platforms and to increase the credibility of our partners," said Rosa Garcia, General Manager of Partner Programs for Microsoft. "Microsoft recognizes NSI Software's commitment to delivering business continuity products that meet the highest standards to ensure customer satisfaction."

Double-Take's patented technology provides high availability for network servers and with its automatic failover capabilities, Double-Take virtually eliminates downtime and data loss by allowing operations to resume quickly after a disaster, without user intervention, disruption or the complexities of restoring from tape-ultimately saving companies from both lost revenue and damaged customer relationships. ...Microsoft profile, ...NSI Software profile

Scotts Valley, Calif. and Eden Prairie, Minn., July 30, 2001 - Seagate Technology and XIOtech® Corporation today announced that Seagate's Cheetah X15 36LP disc drives have been tested, certified, and are immediately available for integration with XIOtech's MAGNITUDE™ SAN. By incorporating Seagate's 15K-rpm, 36 gigabyte disc drive into the MAGNITUDE hardware platform, users will experience instant increases in enterprise performance as time-to-data is substantially reduced. The Seagate Cheetah X15 36LP is available immediately from XIOtech for new or existing XIOtech MAGNITUDE SANs. ...Seagate Technology profile, ...XIOtech profile profile

Editor's note:- the Cheetah drive was featured in more detail in the Compaq/Seagate announcement last week.

Mountain View, CA, July 30, 2001 - Legato Systems, Inc. today announced that Legato NetWorker® 6.1 is the industry's first automated information protection solution to support the Nishan Systems IPS 3000 Series IP Storage switches on three operating systems - Solaris 2.6 and 2.8, Microsoft Windows NT, and Windows 2000.

"Deploying IP Storage networks featuring Nishan's switches enables enterprises to move more quickly and efficiently to SAN and Metropolitan Area Network (MAN) solutions," said Randy Fardal, vice president of marketing, Nishan Systems. "By combining the outstanding backup and recovery performance of NetWorker 6.1 with Nishan's breakthrough IPS 3000 Series switches, businesses can protect their storage assets across heterogeneous SAN/MAN environments with less management complexity and greater scalability."

The Nishan family of IP Storage switches facilitates connectivity from Fibre Channel SANs to the metro area and beyond using standard IP and Gigabit Ethernet, which are the most mature and widely-used networking technologies throughout the world.

"The qualification of the Nishan IPS 3000 Series switches further demonstrates Legato's ongoing commitment to delivering open, interoperable solutions that enable businesses to optimize their investments in storage networks," said Charles Fonner, vice president, worldwide marketing, Legato Systems. "By extending the scope of our solutions to include IP Storage networks and MANs on Solaris and Windows platforms, Legato provides a level of information protection that is currently unique in the industry." ...Legato Systems profile, ...Nishan Systems profile

Camarillo, CA and Bothell, WA - July 30, 2001 - Vitesse Semiconductor Corporation and Vixel Corporation today announced the first product which Vitesse will market under their agreement to jointly develop and market Fibre Channel Loop Switch integrated circuits for SANs. Vixel has leveraged significant Fibre Channel system design experience into a switch ASIC that is ideal for improving storage system performance.

The partnership between Vixel and Vitesse will bring that technology to the market as the VSC7192. The VSC7192 is a 12 Channel Fibre Channel Arbitrated Loop (FC-AL) switch IC which delivers advanced diagnostics and low latency for embedded applications, such as disk arrays, RAID subsystems and standalone switches. The VSC7192 is packaged in a 528-pin, 40mm enhanced PBGA and is available in quantities of 100. Limited samples are available now. Production quantities will be available in the fourth quarter of 2001. The VSC7192 is priced at $210 in quantities of 1,000.

At present, few tools are available to assist network managers and system integrators in isolating potential issues and maintaining performance as they grow their storage capacity. Vixel's InSpeed TM switch technology, which is the core technology of the VSC7192, contains a Serializer/Deserializer (SerDes) on each port and a customized Loop Port State Machine that monitors incoming data for errors. Traffic is routed through the ASIC's switch core to provide a significant increase in speed and enhanced health and management functionality. These features allow storage networks to be built, debugged and deployed quickly while constantly monitoring each node.

The VSC7192 switch operates in an Arbitrated Loop environment to route Fibre Channel frames directly to the destination device and avoids the performance penalties of daisy chaining through each node on the loop. Today's FC-AL environments saturate beyond 15 to 20 devices. In an application using cascaded VSC7192 switches, aggregate bandwidth scales proportionally to node counts up to the maximum 126 devices. The VSC7192 enables FC-AL loops to approach fabric switch performance at a fraction of the cost.

"The VSC7192 is working flawlessly and exceeding our performance expectations in customers' systems and in our compatibility lab. We are very excited about delivering this exceptional technology into the SAN market," stated Jim McCluney, president and CEO of Vixel. "By working with Vitesse, Vixel is helping to deliver this valuable technology to the entire Fibre Channel community."

"Our disk array and RAID customers demand more performance in loop environments and advanced diagnostics that easily identify misbehaving components reliably. The VSC7192 satisfies both of these requirements in an integrated, easy-to-use solution," said Bob Rumer, vice president of Storage Communications Products at Vitesse. "When combined with our Enclosure Management Solutions, customers can easily develop and deliver best-in-breed storage products." ...Vitesse Semiconductor profile, ...Vixel profile

POOLE, DORSET, July 30, 2001 - BakBone Software, Inc. today announced the introduction of a full suite of NetVault Application Plug-in Modules (APMs(tm)) for IBM DB2 and Lotus Notes, covering all major UNIX, Linux and Windows platforms. These APMs, designed to meet the growing storage needs of enterprise-class companies, allow for backup and restore of files with full integrity while the application is online and active. Today's announcement further confirms BakBone's technological leadership in the storage management software field, through its ability to rapidly develop and bring to market innovative products in response to customers needs.

Since its introduction last year, BakBone has introduced more than 230 NetVault APMs, spanning a large array of enterprise applications across 22 operating system platforms, including Windows NT/2000, multiple Linux flavours, and all popular versions of UNIX, with an exclusive on SCO UnixWare and MP-RAS. The new APMs for IBM DB2 and Lotus Notes are the latest in the comprehensive line of add-on modules that enable NetVault, BakBone's flagship backup/restore software, to execute "hot" online backup and restore operations for high performance applications to protect corporate-critical data and remove the "backup window" challenge facing companies with global presence or around-the-clock demands on their information. ...BakBone Software profile

Oslo, Norway, July 30th, 2001 - Tandberg Data ASA today announced that manufacturing of Super DLTtape drives has commenced at Tandberg Data's production facilities in Oslo, Norway. Under license from Quantum Corp., Tandberg Data will act as a supplier of Quantum DLT tape drives and SuperDLT tape drives. Tandberg Data has manufactured branded DLTtape tape drives since September 1999. Tandberg SDLT220 tape drives are now available from authorized Tandberg Data distributors and resellers worldwide.

"Through our relationship with Quantum and building on our experience of manufacturing earlier generation DLT tape drives we have been able to quickly establish and fully qualify our manufacturing facility. This meets the strict requirements for manufacturing highly reliable, high capacity Super DLTtape products." said Gudmundur Einarsson, CEO at Tandberg Data, and added "DLTtape is the leading tape technology in the mid-range market segment and our customers have indicated a strong demand for this product".

"Tandberg and Quantum continue to strengthen their relationship through this manufacturing agreement for SDLT220 tape drives," said Andy Panayides, vice president, strategic planning and business development, Quantum DLTtape Group. "Through this agreement, Quantum can accelerate the proliferation of Super DLTtape technology to the world's leading OEMs and distributors." ...Tandberg Data profile

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