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2001, June - week 3, news archive

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EGHAM, UK - June 21, 2001 - The DRAM industry will experience its worst year ever in 2001, with worldwide revenue declining 55.5 percent over 2000, according to Dataquest Inc., a unit of Gartner, Inc. Worldwide DRAM revenue is projected to fall from $31.5 billion in 2000 to $14 billion in 2001.

"The last time we saw a DRAM revenue decline of this scale was in 1985 when the market declined 55.1 percent," said Andrew Norwood, senior analyst with Gartner Dataquest's worldwide semiconductors group. "Both 2001 and 1985 market crashes were brought about by a sudden decline in demand and increasing inventories. In 1985, it was the end of the home computer boom; today, it is the slowing growth in personal computer shipments and inventory build-up that started in 2000. "The only thing that can save the DRAM industry from its worst year is if major companies like Samsung, Micron Technologies and Infineon Technologies announce production cut backs," Norwood said. "Eventually, the DRAM market will recover. 2002 will be a transition year, with low growth returning to the market, but 2003 should see the strongest DRAM market growth since the early 1990s."

DRAM pricing has declined by about 80 percent in the past 12 months. Gartner Dataquest analysts said that this week, spot market pricing for a mainstream 128Mb (megabit) device fell to less than $2, and even contract pricing has fallen below $3 - that is under cost-of-production for most manufacturers. Most DRAM companies are making losses now, and this will continue into 2002.

"In a situation like this, you would expect to see companies exiting the market, but the cost of quitting the DRAM industry is high, and what do you do with the spare fab capacity," Norwood said. "You can sell your DRAM business, as Texas Instruments did in 1999 when Micron Technologies acquired its DRAM operation. Or companies could follow Motorola's example. In 1998, the company phased out of the DRAM market, but it continued to supply DRAM to its joint-venture partners for a period." ...GartnerGroup profile

MINNEAPOLIS - June 21, 2001 - Datalink Corporation (Nasdaq:DTLK) today presented a revised outlook for its second quarter results for the period ending June 30, 2001. Datalink expects revenue for the June quarter of 2001 to be approximately $26-$30 million and a loss of $.06 to $.11 per diluted share. In the same period a year ago, Datalink posted revenues of $34.9 million and earnings per diluted share of $.15.

Greg Meland, Datalink's President and CEO, commented, "Our lower expectations for the second quarter reflect an extremely difficult environment for capital spending. The current level of economic uncertainty has led to an overall reduction in capital spending including spending for technology. While our pipeline of anticipated sales has remained at high levels, we are experiencing many instances where our customers are postponing their spending decisions."

Meland said that information storage growth is not diminishing. "Advance information strategies and technologies, such as SAN's are still vital to our customers' ability to use information. For many organizations, these technologies present an opportunity for improved productivity through more efficient management of information.... We plan to emerge from this difficult period well positioned to take advantage of the growing opportunity in the data storage markets. The near term market conditions do not diminish our long-term confidence for Datalink's success. We continue to have a strong balance sheet with virtually no debt and have the capital strength and flexibility to fund our growth initiatives.

Pending further consideration of the impact of current economic conditions, Datalink declined at this time to issue new operating results guidance for the remainder of calendar 2001. The Company plans to issue revised guidance at the time of its second quarter earnings release which is scheduled for July 18, 2001. ...Datalink profile

Editor's comments:- this shows just how bad the US IT recession is getting. In the first quarter of 2001, Datalink was one of the fastest growing profitable storage vendors in the US. Looking ahead, the activity levels on a portal like STORAGEsearch can be useful predictor for what's going to happen in the market. Next month we will publish more statistical data taken from this web site, and include month to month trends for key product areas.

ANAHEIM, California, June 21, 2001 ­ Rick Ruskin, industry veteran and executive vice president of MTI Technology Corporation will address "RAID, NAS, SAN, IP, Fibre Channel ­ Where do They Fit in Today¹s Storage Systems?" at PC EXPO, next week. Held at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City from June 26-28, PC EXPO, the expo portion of TechXNY 2001, will focus on mobile & wireless, business solutions, leading-edge Internet security advances, ASPs, the latest in Linux, storage technologies and more. Separately, Ruskin will also appear as a panelist in the SAN Summit. The SAN Summit will focus on reducing storage costs, increasing reliability, boosting Web and network performance, and building a highly scalable and bulletproof storage infrastructure with exceptional disaster recovery functions. The Clustering/Load Balancing Summit aims to help companies meet the e-business information storage and access challenge. ...MTI Technology profile

ROCKVILLE, MD - June 21, 2001 - OTG Software, Inc. announced today that the company has signed an agreement with Minolta Information Systems, Inc. (MISI), a Mahwah, NJ-based wholly owned subsidiary of Minolta Corporation, Ramsey, NJ. Under this agreement, OTG will be MISI's preferred vendor to provide a seamless conversion and replacement for Minolta's Doc-Xnet 3.0 and MI3MS 3000 software, which Minolta has decided to discontinue as part of the company's restructuring announced April 25, 2001.

OTG and Minolta's co-branded solution, XtenderSolutions® for Doc-Xnet, will allow Minolta's customers to easily upgrade to a new solution without having to move data from storage subsystems, thus reducing the risk of lost data. MISI and OTG worked closely together to facilitate forward compatibility for Minolta's COLD and I.C.E. (computer report file formats), OLE (electronic file formats) and TIF-JBIG file formats, as well as document annotations. OTG's new solution offers key additional capabilities including improved scalability, an interactive Web client, an enhanced security model with user group support and annotation support. The combined offering maximizes the value of stored information by providing a universal interface to access various forms of electronic content – documents, COLD/ERM, video, and audio. ...OTG Software profile

Long Beach, CA, June 20, 2001 - TrueSAN Networks, Inc. today announced a strategic agreement with 2netFX. This partnership, announced at Streaming Media West 2001, will combine TrueSAN's Paladin™ network storage systems and Alchemy™ software with 2netFX's ThunderCastIP™ Advanced Media Server software to provide 2netFX customers with a complete solution for storing, managing, and streaming HDTV content.

"The unique architecture of the TrueSAN network storage solution scales in bandwidth as capacity is added, ideal for rich media content delivery," said Jan Aggerbeck, 2netFX President and CEO. "By joining forces, 2netFX is able to offer its customers a solution for rapidly deploying full-motion, full-color, full-screen HDTV quality video and audio streaming over IP networks."

Streaming media, unlike traditional storage applications, requires digital content to be transmitted at a consistent rate to prevent degradation in video or audio quality. The performance and data storage requirements of content delivery, particularly for HDTV, demand network storage that can guarantee consistent bandwidth even as the amount of content and the number of users grow exponentially. The Paladin C-series, with its high-bandwidth, distributed MetaFabric™ storage architecture, offers content delivery providers a powerful network storage solution for addressing the stringent requirements of streaming rich media content. ...2netFX profile, ...TrueSAN Networks profile

MILPITAS, Calif., June 20, 2001 - LSI Logic Storage Systems, Inc today announced a strategic alliance with Doyle Technology Consultants Inc., a leading systems integrator in the broadcast and multimedia markets. Doyle Technology will integrate high availability, high performance, LSI's MetaStor® storage systems with platforms and video applications from a wide range of vendors to deliver a SAN solution specifically engineered for major media, transport services providers, broadcasters, cable and satellite operators, and production and post-production houses.

"Custom solutions are artifacts of an immature industry, but the entertainment industry has been dependent on them due to its need for processing very large quantities of many forms of data," said William P. Hurley, program manager, E-Networks & Broadband Access, The Yankee Group. "The LSI Logic Storage Systems and Doyle Technology alliance will deliver the open, vendor neutral, storage management solution that this business has needed for a long time."

At Streaming Media West 2001 in Long Beach, California, June 20-22, LSI Logic Storage Systems and Doyle Technology will be in Booth #1143 to demonstrate a rich media encoding system and a "media on demand" play out system that share a common storage infrastructure.

"Historically, media-rich storage management systems have been developed as proprietary, turnkey systems that eventually suffer in terms of total cost of ownership," said Greg Reitman, entertainment industry marketing manager for LSI Logic Storage Systems, Inc. "However, this new alliance allows customers to have access to best-of-breed applications across the entire video distribution chain. The solution has the advantage of being platform neutral, while making it practical and cost effective to build a state-of-the-art SAN that meets the unique performance, availability, and scalability needs of the entertainment markets."

In the demonstration, broadcast quality video and audio will be captured on a Media100 iFinish workstation, then edited and stored on the MetaStor storage system as a high quality QuickTime file. Next, automated batch encoding software, called Flip Factory by Telestream, will flip the QuickTime file into Windows media files at specified data rates that will then be managed on a Storage Area Network.

"Major companies in the entertainment business handle extremely large quantities of data at very high data rates, and the cost of failure or unexpected interruption can be very high," said Don Morgan, Director Project Development of Doyle Technology. "The industry has desperately needed a scalable, multi-vendor, SAN solution, engineered specifically for this industry. We are very pleased to be working with LSI Logic Storage Systems to deliver it." ...LSI Logic Storage Systems profile

UK - June 20, 2001 – Overland Data, Inc. today announced it has awarded Gold Partner status to UK based NCE Computer Group (Europe) in recognition of the company's outstanding sales and support for the Overland product family. NCE is Overland's first European reseller to become a Gold Partner. The Gold Partner accreditation programme was developed to take advantage of the growth in opportunities in the tape storage market and the move towards SAN and NAS architectures. The programme recognises and supports top performing resellers who have committed to selling Overland products now and in the future and who have made an investment in terms of training and expertise.
Other news on this page

Gartner Dataquest Forecasts 2001 Worst Year Ever for DRAM Industry

Datalink Corporation Revises Second Quarter 2001 Outlook

MTI's Ruskin to Present Next Week at PC Expo

Minolta Information Systems Selects OTG Software As Exclusive Replacement for Doc-Xnet and MI3MS 3000

TrueSAN Networks and 2netFX Partner to Deliver Complete HDTV Video Streaming and Storage Solution for Enterprises and Service Providers

LSI Logic Storage Systems and Doyle Technology partner to deliver entertainment industry SAN solutions

NCE Becomes First Overland Reseller in Europe to Receive Gold Partner Status

Kentron Technologies Licenses its Advanced FEMMA™ and Low Profile Memory Technologies to Peripheral Enhancements

Cypress Delivers USB 2.0 Mass Storage Reference Design Kit

MTI Captures the Power of Satellite Delivered Streaming Media at Streaming Media West Show

InfiniSwitch Demonstrates Leading High-Capacity InfiniBand Switch at InfiniBand Trade Association Spring Developers' Conference

Pumatech announces Mind-it® software version 5.1

InfiniBand Takes Root, but Market Maturity Still a Ways Off

Overland Data Sells Entry-Level Tape Drive Designs to Seagate Removable Storage Solutions for Future Royalties; Updates Outlook for Fourth Quarter

Ecrix VXA Offers First Server-Class IDE/ATAPI Tape Drive

Light Reading Launches new Storage Portal

American Megatrends Inc. Ships 1U, Eight Drive NAS and JBOD Solution

QLogic Bridges InfiniBand™ Architecture and Fibre Channel Infrastructures with End-to-End Connectivity

Troika Networks Announces Strategic Participation in First DAFS Product Demonstration

META Group's SPEX Research Ranks DataMirror Number One

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Re: What is the InfiniBand Ecosystem?

by InfiniCon Systems

InfiniBand is a new industry standard for server input/output (I/O) communications. It eases the data congestion among hardware devices by enabling servers, remote storage and other networking devices to be attached in a central "fabric" of switches and links. This high bandwidth, highly scalable, switched serial infrastructure addresses the bandwidth and connectivity limitations facing data centers today without compromising availability.

One of the most remarkable things about InfiniBand is that it enables I/O to be completely removed from the server. Next generation InfiniBand-based servers, some of which may be much smaller than traditional servers, can be connected by a sharable I/O infrastructure that will provide server clustering and integration of existing data center infrastructures. Ultra-dense server clusters connected through stand-alone, InfiniBand-enabled I/O subsystems will soon be deployed to handle heavy-transaction environments. The results will be higher bandwidth, better data availability and lower administration costs.

The InfiniBand architecture delivers three levels of performance with the 1X link technology (500MB/s), the 4X link technology (2GB/s) and the 12X link technology (6GB/s). These performance levels will be commercially available at different points over the next eighteen months. InfiniCon Systems is developing I/O subsystems that will provide InfiniBand switching for clustering applications, as well as the I/O infrastructure for connectivity into existing Ethernet LANs and fibre channel-based storage networks.

The InfiniBand Ecosystem

InfiniBand is already being implemented in hardware components such as Host Channel Adaptor (HCA), Target Channel Adaptor (TCA) and InfiniBand Switch silicon. In addition, InfiniBand subnet management software is being developed to manage the fabric. These components and software management entities will need to be leveraged into complete system solutions to enable data centers to reap the benefits of the InfiniBand architecture.

"With processor speeds increasing to two gigahertz and high bandwidth connectivity becoming more prevalent, the bottleneck of the server I/O complex has to be removed. In order for users to benefit from faster processing power and increased data movement, a new paradigm is required. By moving the I/O complex from the server into an independent, scalable I/O subsystem, users will benefit from higher scalability than previously possible, as well as the ability to connect into existing infrastructures," explained Philip Murphy, president and co-founder, InfiniCon Systems.

InfiniCon Systems believes that InfiniBand will become a major standard in data centers, and that as InfiniBand applications mature, a tier will begin to emerge with increasing degrees of intelligence. As a result of the new InfiniBand technology, data centers will be able to deploy sharable I/O subsystems that enable customers to fully exploit their CPU power without replacing their existing network and storage infrastructure investment. Additionally, more common sharable services will be deployed within the InfiniBand fabric.

"InfiniBand will expand the horizons of enterprise interconnectivity over the next eight years as the intelligent controller has for enterprise storage over the past eight. Evidenced by InfiniCon Systems' choice of the word 'ecosystem,' InfiniBand defines an evolving systems environment," commented John Young, research program director, enterprise storage, D.H. Brown Associates. "This environment is one that expands infrastructure possibilities, stretches data center boundaries, and supports the needs of highly differentiated end-user communities. With InfiniBand, the computing industry takes a giant step towards ultimate responsiveness to user needs."

Additional topics regarding InfiniBand in the data center will be addressed by InfiniCon Systems in future columns.

InClose Design
InClose is a pre-IPO manufacturer and distributor of storage peripheral devices, storage enclosures, and mass-storage controllers for both consumers and corporations.

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As an Overland Gold Partner, NCE will benefit from:
  • Technical and sales training.
  • Receiving pre-qualified leads generated through Overland's demand generation programmes giving partners the power to grow their business rapidly.
  • Being eligible to participate in exclusive partner marketing programmes through Overland's distributors.
  • Overland support at regional and national exhibitions, seminars, briefings.
news image Overland & NCE Computer Group
Jim Raven, Managing Director of NCE Computer Group (Europe) on the left, and Tim Davies, Overland UK Sales Manager, on the right.
"The Gold Partner label is our seal of quality, serving to assure our end users that they are in the best possible hands when it comes to Overland equipment," explains Nick Charles, managing director and vice president for Overland's Europe, Middle East & Africa region. "We are delighted to appoint NCE as Gold Partner. The knowledge and experience of NCE has proved paramount to its success in implementing data storage solutions and we are very pleased to give them formal recognition for this." customers....NCE (Europe) profile, ...Overland Data profile

Wilmington, MA, - June 20, 2001 – Kentron Technologies today announced that Peripheral Enhancements has licensed Kentron's FEMMA (Foldable Electronic Memory Module Assembly) technology, as well as Kentron's Low Profile DIMM technology. The FEMMA technology provides a proven low cost, low thermal and highly reliable memory platform to achieve high memory density. Additionally, Kentron's low profile technology is an innovation in low height (1.2" and below) memory modules. The low profile memory technology was especially designed by Kentron to be utilized in space-limited environments such as the "1U" platforms used in the Internet server and telecom markets where space and height constraints are at a minimum. Kentron's low profile and FEMMA technology based memory modules have been widely accepted by system developers for their low thermal properties, high reliability, high density, and leading price/performance position. Both technologies are scalable to future chip technologies such as BGA (Ball Grid Array) and Sync Flash.

"Kentron is quite excited about this new relationship with Peripheral Enhancements", said Bob Goodman, Chief Executive Officer of Kentron Technologies. "We are convinced that the combination of Kentron's leading memory technology and Peripheral's strong manufacturing and distribution channel capabilities will result in strong market share growth for both parties."

The licensing agreement provides Peripheral Enhancements with Kentron's leading memory technology, which enables them to now build and sell high density, cost-efficient, reliable memory modules utilizing FEMMA technology. Additionally, Peripheral will be able to take advantage of Kentron's low profile technology to manufacture and sell low-height memory modules which are highly demanded by the growing "1U" server marketplace.

"This partnership opens the door to many opportunities for Peripheral in the "1U" business," stated Brian Satorius, Vice President of Materials for Peripheral Enhancements Corporation. He continued, "We now can provide more cost-effective solutions for our high-end server customers while continuing to provide the superb compatibility and quality that our company is recognized for in the marketplace." ...Kentron Technologies profile, ...Peripheral Enhancements profile

Editor's comments:- market research company IDC rececently reported that although overall US server factory revenues declined 16% in Q1, rackmount revenue grew 87%, and rackmount server unit shipments grew 138%. That's creating a surge in demand for low profile memory, and rackmount storage systems.

SAN JOSE, Calif., June 19, 2001 - Cypress Semiconductor today announced the availability of a reference design kit for USB 2.0 mass storage applications. The CY4611 reference design kit uses Cypress's EZ-USB®FX2™controller to provide a high-performance USB 2.0-to-ATA bridge solution supporting various storage media and the IDE and ATAPI data transfer modes through UDMA-100.

The CY4611 kit includes the hardware and software that developers need to implement the high-speed USB 2.0 interface in mass-storage peripherals, including CD-RW, DVD, magneto-optical and hard disk drives. Designers can use the standard mass-storage class drivers that ship with various operating systems. Cypress has conducted extensive testing to ensure the development kit's compatibility with a broad range of storage media, drives and manufacturers.
The CY4611 kit includes a small-form-factor demonstration board (also known as a "tailgate" board), firmware source and object code, and full documentation. Extensive operating system support includes custom drivers for Microsoft Windows®98, standard operating system class drivers for Windows (XP, 2000 and ME) and standard operating system class drivers for the Mac OS (8.6, 9.0/9.1 and X). The kit's hardware files include schematics, bill of materials and Gerber files. The CY4611 takes advantage of the EZ-USB FX2 controller's flexible architecture to provide a high level of adaptability, ensuring high performance and compatibility with all IDE and ATAPI designs. news image Cypress USB kit
"The mass storage market represents a 'sweet spot' for USB 2.0. Peripheral manufacturers are eager to implement the high-bandwidth capabilities that USB 2.0 can deliver," said Dave Podsiadlo, product marketing manager for Cypress's Interface Products Division. "The flexible architecture of the EZ-USB FX2 is a clear advantage for mass storage system developers. It allows them to not only customize their designs but also provides the adaptability needed to support emerging storage technologies." ...Cypress profile

ANAHEIM, Calif., June 19, 2001 - MTI Technology Corp. will be presenting a demonstration of real-time streaming media on high definition television ("HDTV") with IP-based satellite routing and transport via the MTI Vivant S Series SAN devices at Booth 1439 at the Streaming Media West show in Long Beach on June 20-22, 2001. Streaming Media West is the world's largest Internet audio and video event and is the #1 meeting place for Fortune 1000 communications executives who are seeking streaming media solutions to turbo-charge their corporate communications, distance training/e-learning, investor relations and e-commerce applications.

Using the S Series and teaming with our vendors Helius, DigitalScape and 2netFX, MTI will show an end-to-end enterprise-level streaming media solution to deliver live, real-time HDTV-based media casts over broadband satellite IP multicasting.

Featuring up to 1.7TB of capacity, the MTI Vivant S Series is a completely integrated SAN designed for the UNIX, Windows NT/2000 and Linux environment and is capable of supporting multiple servers simultaneously. Centralized and remote management capabilities of storage resources are enabled through the browser-based management tools to dynamically allocate storage on an as-needed basis and tune performance, simplifying administration and maximizing system uptime. The Vivant S Series SAN appliance combines full component redundancy with dual data I/O paths to ensure Continuous Access to Online Information in an easily managed storage pool. The Switched Fibre Channel technology gives maximum performance and allows for future storage growth.

In combination with a unique, low-profile 1U rackmountable dual-processor server appliance with enterprise-class capabilities from DigitalScape, HDTV ThunderCastIP multicast server software from 2netFX and Helius' satellite broadband multi-cast delivery solution, MTI will demonstrate how streaming content can benefit government agencies, schools, the medical profession and any organization wanting to utilize the power of streaming media. ...2netFX profile, ...MTI Technology profile

Westborough, MA - June 19, 2001 - InfiniSwitch Corporation today announced the first public demonstration of its InfiniBand switching technology. InfiniSwitch will exhibit an InfiniBand switch fabric that includes technology from Dell Computer Corporation, IBM, Intel Corporation, Lane15 Software, and VIEO. InfiniSwitch's technology demonstration is taking place at the InfiniBand Trade Association's Spring Developers' Conference, being held June 19-22, 2001, at the Wyndham Palace Resort and Spa in Lake Buena Vista, FL.

"In recognition of today's space constrained data center environment, InfiniSwitch has developed the industry's first rack-dense InfiniBand switching solution," said Jean Hoxie-Wasko, Vice President of Marketing, InfiniSwitch Corporation. "Our first generation 1U 32-port InfiniBand switch is designed to provide high availability, scalability, flexibility and interoperability at the core of the InfiniBand fabric. We are pleased that Intel, VIEO, Lane15 and Banderacom are using our switching technology with their products at this signature trade association event."

Research from IDC estimates that more than 75 percent of all servers shipped in 2004 will be shipped with InfiniBand connectivity. With backing by industry's leaders, Compaq, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Intel, Microsoft and Sun Microsystems, InfiniBand architecture represents the industry's choice for I/O technologies that will keep pace with the growing computing and storage demands of the Internet age. ...InfiniSwitch profile

SAN JOSE, Calif. - June 19, 2001 - Pumatech, Inc. today announced version 5.1 of its Mind-it change detection, notification and personalization software. This latest version of Mind-it provides a host of new features including real time notification of changes made to monitored information, the ability to detect changes on protected Web pages such as personal banking information or content on secure corporate intranets, and the ability to use embedded Web page links to immediately access vital information via any WAP-capable wireless device. In addition, the new version specifically targets enterprise customers by allowing them to improve management and dissemination of internal information within their workforce, and to better monitor external information (such as competitive updates) that impacts day-to-day business objectives. Enterprises and developers are also targeted with the addition of a well-defined and comprehensive SDK that allows developers to build upon the Mind-it platform and provide their customers with customized searches that meet their business needs. ...Pumatech profile

June 18, 2001 - The InfiniBand ecosystem is taking root:- according to IDC, products associated with the architecture could rapidly move from the early design and test stage into the early acceptance stage by late 2001. However, ongoing economic challenges, alternative product announcements, and lack of public awareness about InfiniBand could slow its adoption.

"Although there is economic uncertainty, InfiniBand's ability to improve the overall efficiency of Internet data centers makes it an extremely popular architecture," said Vernon Turner, vice president of IDC's Global Enterprise Server Solutions. "Once the benefits of InfiniBand are realized in Internet data centers, similar operational challenges will be tackled in traditional enterprise environments."

Vendor interest in server blades will be crucial to fueling InfiniBand's acceptance and growth. IDC believes the new form factor's focus on density, power, and all aspects of server and workload installation and management has allowed InfiniBand to team up with a new server platform and a new system interconnect to create an unusual opportunity in the industry. "Server blade vendors are expected to seek out InfiniBand partners to provide the high-speed I/O connectivity in this dense server market," Turner said. The growth in appliance servers will also influence InfiniBand. Given the appliance server market is best suited to a rack-optimized environment, the notion of server-to-server connectivity, clustering, and server to storage represent InfiniBand opportunities.

According to IDC, significant InfiniBand opportunity exists in the midrange and high-end server markets; however, these markets represent less than 10% of total server unit sales. Given new markets tend to go for the largest opportunities, IDC believes the entry server market offers the best short-term returns. ...IDC profile

SAN DIEGO, Calif., - June 18, 2001 - Overland Data, Inc. (Nasdaq: OVRL) today announced that it has signed an agreement to sell its Travan-based WS30 and EDT40 tape drive designs and related assets to Seagate Removable Storage Solutions (RSS) as part of the Company's plan to improve future profitability by eliminating operations and assets outside of Overland's core business. As a result of the sale of the entry-level tape drive business, Overland will reduce pre-tax R&D expenses by approximately $2.0 million per year, and will record a non-recurring after-tax charge of approximately $1.4 million, or $.13 per share, in the fourth quarter ending June 30, 2001.

Overland entered the low-end tape drive business in February 2000 through the acquisition of certain Tecmar assets and operations. This acquisition has resulted in the development of next-generation technologies but generated insignificant revenues to date. Under the agreement announced today, Seagate will receive all intellectual property related to the WS30 and EDT40 tape drive designs and has the option to acquire certain fixed assets and inventories required to manufacture the products. Overland will receive royalty payments based on sales of the resulting tape drive products and related tape media cartridges. In addition, the tape drives will utilize Overland's patented Variable Rate Randomizer technology which will be embedded in an ASIC chip within the drives, and Seagate has entered into a supply agreement to purchase the VR2 chips from Overland.

In related actions, Overland also announced that it would write off the remaining balance of the optical jukebox design that it acquired in July 1999, and that it had settled two small lawsuits that had been pending for some time. The Company expects that these actions, together with severance pay associated with the reduction in force previously announced on April 19, 2001, would amount to approximately $700,000 in additional non-recurring charges for the fourth quarter.

Christopher Calisi, President and CEO of Overland, said, "Our agreement with Seagate is a win-win for both Seagate and Overland. Seagate is the dominant player in the Travan space and is well equipped to deliver next-generation Travan drives to the entry-level server market segment. As they are successful in deploying these product designs, Overland will receive a stream of royalty payments, as well as revenues from the sale of VR2 chips. Furthermore, all of our actions today help further my goal, since becoming Overland's President three months ago, to eliminate non-core business-related assets, increase the Company's profitability and focus on our core strength in the mid-range tape automation market. We believe that these actions, combined with the superior design and reliability of our new Neo Series of tape libraries, should position Overland well for the future. In addition, excluding the non-recurring charges associated with the actions announced today, we remain confident in our ability to meet current market expectations for earnings and revenues for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ending June 30, 2001." ...Overland Data profile, ...Seagate profile

Editor's notes:- One man's niche is another man's poison... In the current market climate, the outlook for various segments of the tape backup market can be summarised as follows:-
  • low end desktop products, in which HP is a major supplier, are suffering the double whammy of a recesion in the US PC market, and technical obsolesence because of the greater convenience of CD writers and removable disk drives
  • backwards looking, mid range, legacy products are not having a great time either, evidenced by quarterly reports from leading companies in this area like Exabyte. It's possible that users are taking a one time hit with mid range legacy backup data, and moving them to optical jukeboxes, or newer media
  • newer, forward looking mid range tape backup formats, such as VXA from Ecrix seem to be gaining support and momentum
  • high end tape libraries from ADIC and Qualstar are among the fastest growing revenue segments in the storage market, presumably because backing up network data wholesale is more cost effective for organizations than the piecemeal, retail approach of backing up islands of data

Boulder, CO - June 18, 2001 - Ecrix Corporation today announced availability of a high-performance ATAPI or IDE version of its award-winning VXA-1 tape drive. The VXA-1 is the only high-capacity, high-performance tape drive with an IDE/ATAPI interface. The 33/66 GB (native/compressed) internal 5¼-inch half-high IDE/ATAPI drive is ideally positioned for and currently available to OEMs, white box manufacturers and system integrators.

"Increased capacity and performance IDE/ATAPI disk drives cost less than SCSI disk drives and are being used more and more in applications that traditionally require SCSI," stated Kelly Beavers, president of Ecrix Corporation. "VXA-1, with an IDE/ATAPI interface, is the only cost-effective solution to back up the low-end servers and workstations running these applications."
VXA-1 tape drives offer compressed capacities up to 66 GB at 6 MB/second. The VXA-1 IDE tape drive features an Ultra DMA mode 2 interface and will support burst transfer rates up to 33 MB/second. VXA tape products offer a superior read/write architecture that is designed for 100% data restore. Data is recorded in highly reliable Internet-like packets in lieu of large data blocks. The VXA products also capitalize on advanced metal evaporated media, which Ecrix markets under the brand name VXAtape. news image - Ecrix IDE tape drive
Compatible with all major operating systems and backup applications, VXA-1 tape drives have received Microsoft's "Designed for Windows" certification. They have also attained status as the preferred tape storage device for all primary Linux server and workstation manufacturers. ...Ecrix profile

NEW YORK, June 18, 2001 - Light Reading , the premiere information resource for the optical networking industry, today announced that it has launched a new publication, Byte and Switch, dedicated to covering the exploding storage networking market.

"Byte and Switch has a different focus than other storage networking publications. It covers a lot more than just storage, and much more than just networking. Instead, it covers integrated storage-network solutions running over local-, metro-, and wide-area networks," says Ralph Barker, editor-in-chief of Byte and Switch.

Editor's comment, this publication, STORAGEsearch was the first, web only, enterprise storage portal, (launched Q3 1998), and since then a lot of other publications have come into this market, which is why we have a directory of STORAGE Portals to enable you to research your specialist interests, or go into more depth in subject areas which we don't cover here.

ATLANTA - Monday, June 18, 2001 - American Megatrends Inc. (AMI) today announced it is shipping the first validation units of its StorTrends 1108 NAS and JBOD (just a bunch of disks) line. The units are available in versions 1108-J (JBOD), 1108-N (with AMI's NAS controller) and 1108-P (with NAS controller and AMI's NAS software). Full availability of the StorTrends 1108 in J, N and P versions will be August 1, 2001. MSRP ranges from $4,069 to $6,029, depending on whether the unit is a JBOD or has the optional Indium and StorTrends NAS software. '

StorTrends 1108-J – the basic chassis (JBOD) - The StorTrends 1108-J is a 1U eight drive dual channel Ultra160 SCSI NAS high-performance and highly scalable solution. The unit has many redundancy features, including three hot swappable dual unit fans and two hot swappable load sharing power supplies. One major advantage of the StorTrends 1108 line over any other NAS or JBOD device in the industry is its eZswap hard drive replacement mechanism.

''The revolutionary, patent-pending eZswap mechanism is the best feature of the StorTrends 1108 series,'' said Rodney Damen, senior program manager for storage and server subsystems. ''Its ease of use will drastically improve the way we install and remove hard drives; it will meet all expectations of users seeking a complete, user-friendly solution. New drives are installed by simply inserting them straight out of the box -- without screws, rails or carrier assemblies -- and then latched in place with no mounting accessories or assembly. To replace a drive, the old drive is unlocked, removed and a new drive installed and locked in place in a matter of seconds.''

StorTrends 1108-N – Indium NAS controller - The 1108-N solution includes AMI's Indium NAS controller, which combines AMI's expertise in board, firmware and operating system environments. The Indium's appliance architecture provides a scalable, high-performance platform that addresses many applications, including NAS, web servers and other embedded environments. ...AMI profile

Editor's comment:- I was a bit confused when I saw this release, because less than 3 weeks ago, AMI announced it was selling off its RAID business to LSI Logic Corporation, and I didn't realise there were any storage related systems products left in the AMI stable. Well, it looks like there are.

ORLANDO, Fla. - June 18, 2001 - QLogic Corp. today announced it will expand its end-to-end SAN offerings with plans for the industry's first InfiniBand Architecture-to-Fibre Channel input/output (I/O) module, designed to connect Fibre Channel storage networks to forthcoming InfiniBand-capable servers. QLogic is showcasing a prototype of the new technology in a demonstration that includes QLogic's Fibre Channel products and InfiniBand switch at this week's InfiniBand Trade Association conference.

"This plug-and-play I/O module brings the best InfiniBand architecture and Fibre Channel technologies together so that IT managers can make a simple and hassle-free transition to a solid foundation for the future while simultaneously protecting their current IT investments," said Rob Davis, vice president of advanced technology, QLogic Corporation. "With dual independent 2 gigabit Fibre Channel ports and a 4X InfiniBand backplane connection that can pass data at speeds up to 20 gigabits per second, the QLogic InfiniBand module is the ideal bridge between InfiniBand-based server clusters and Fibre Channel SANs."

The QLogic InfiniBand I/O module is packaged in the standard InfiniBand form factor. It is designed for full compatibility with all InfiniBand Architecture-compliant products including motherboard chipsets, host channel adapters, switches and routers. Connecting 2 Gb/second Fibre Channel SANs to 2.5Gb/second InfiniBand ports at full throughput, the module is also backward- compatible with 1 Gigabit Fibre Channel devices, protecting current Fibre Channel SAN investments. ...QLogic profile

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif., June 15, 2001 - Troika Networks today announced its strategic participation in a first prototype implementation of the new Direct Access File System (DAFS) storage networking protocol being demonstrated Monday, June 18 at the TROIKA-sponsored DAFS Collaborative 6th Developer's Conference in Orlando, Florida. A key component in the Fibre Channel fabric demonstration, TROIKA's Zentai Controller (intelligent HBA), the industry's only standards-based VI Architecture solution available today, leverages the existing infrastructure of storage devices and interconnects in a trusted, reliable method of network transport. DAFS users will benefit from TROIKA's VI implementation in the Zentai Controller, through substantially improved performance of file-sharing applications and enhanced clustering capabilities within Fibre Channel-based storage networking environments

"We are committed to driving the convergence of SANs and NAS, providing consumers with comprehensive, yet simple storage networking solutions," said Bill Terrell, chief technology officer (CTO) and co-founder of TROIKA. "TROIKA's contribution to the development of DAFS will be an essential element for delivering a high-performance file-oriented data transfer mechanism, bringing consumers file-level access at block-level speeds." ...Troika Networks profile

See also:- Glossary, Industry trade associations

TORONTO, CANADA - June 15, 2001 - DataMirror Corporation today announced that its Transformation Server software received top marks in ETL Tools 2001, an evaluation of Extract, Transform, and Load (ETL) tools conducted by SPEX Research, a division of META Group. DataMirror Transformation Server's top rankings ranged from excellent to outstanding in the areas of functionality, usability, technology and market strength. The study singled out the strengths of Transformation Server in the areas of real-time integration, support for wireless and mobile business intelligence environments, flexible user exits and out-of-the-box bridges to third-party analysis tools. Transformation Server is data integration software that captures, transforms and flows data in real-time across today's multi-platform computing environments, so the data used for analysis is always fresh and fully synchronized. ...DataMirror profile

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