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2005, March week 4, news archive

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article:- Introducing WORM Hard Disk Drives
article:- the Dangers of Removable Storage Media
Squeak! - the Top 10 Storage Software Companies
Squeak! - the Solid State Disks Buyers Guide
article:- Serial Attached SCSI - Delivering Flexibility to the Data Center
Squeak! - the Fastest Growing Storage Companies in 2004
article:- Disk to Disk Backup versus Tape - War or Truce?
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ALISO VIEJO, Calif. - March 30, 2005 - SiliconSystems, Inc. today announced that it has signed a distribution agreement for the Japanese market with SolidGear Corporation. SolidGear is a leading solid-state storage distributor and technical support services company headquartered in Yokohama, Japan.

"SolidGear has significant sales and technical expertise in the solid-state storage market supporting more than 300 projects for 70 of the leading industrial companies in Japan," said Hiroto Okada, CEO at SolidGear. "For a decade, SolidGear's management team has been responsible for developing the solid-state storage market from its infancy in Japan. Because of our background, we know that there is a persistent need in the enterprise system OEM market for highly optimized, industrial-grade solid-state storage solutions. We are proud to represent SiliconSystems' industry-leading technology and products as they are the only company to totally satisfy this market's unique requirements."

"We have the confidence that our SiliconDrive products will be well-represented in Japan since the SolidGear founders are seasoned industry experts who have a keen understanding of the region and market," said Gary Drossel, director of product marketing at SiliconSystems. "Just as important, SolidGear has a sterling reputation for technical services assisting customers with solid-state storage applications." ...SiliconSystems profile, Solid State Disks


LITTLETON, COLORADO - March 30, 2005 - SCSI Toolbox, LLC introduced today the addition of the Bus Analyzer Module, the newest capability in the SCSItoolbox Suite of peripheral test/diagnostic tools. In use worldwide since 1992, SCSItoolbox is the industry's most widely used testing and diagnostic tool in storage design engineering, development, manufacturing, and QA test environments.

The Bus Analyzer Module allows the capture of bus traffic data on any peripheral bus (i.e. SCSI, Fibre Channel, ATA, SATA, ATAPI, and SAS). Captured data is displayed in real time along with a graphical display of various performance metrics, such as command queue depth, data transfer rate, command latency, and more. These features, combined in Version 6.0 with the SCSItoolbox Suite, bring new levels of efficiency to anyone involved in the design, test, or comparison of storage peripheral devices.

While hardware bus or protocol analyzers are required where the user needs to capture fine protocol details, for all other applications SCSItoolbox Bus Analyzer Module is more portable. As a software product it can travel to customer or field locations on a notebook computer. BAM is included in the price of the SCSItoolbox Suite, starting at $4,495 with discounts based on quantity.

SCSItoolbox also comes with Manufacturing Modules, a complete high-volume manufacturing/ reliability test/burn-in test system for both disks and tapes. Each drive on up to 16 host bus adapters has its own independent test thread for the highest data throughput and least interaction with other devices under test. A simple point and click interface allows complex sequences of tests to be assembled in minutes, and many pre-defined test sequences are included. Detailed test reports are generated for each device tested, and an Access database allows users to build up a historical database tracking every drive that passes through their facility. ...SCSI Toolbox profile, ...SolidGear Storage Testers


MILPITAS and CUPERTINO, CA. - March 29, 2005 - Neterion Inc. and PyX Technologies Inc. have announced a new benchmark for IP Storage Area Networking. Working together, the companies used a standard 10 Gigabit Ethernet fabric to demonstrate the scalability and interoperability of their technologies. They accomplished a world-record peak throughput of 7.5 Gb/s (937.5 MBytes/s) that included network headers and full featured iSCSI with Error Recovery Level Two using three iSCSI initiators and one iSCSI target. The record-breaking performance transported the data over a heterogeneous 10 Gigabit Ethernet network infrastructure. The results were achieved using a TeraScale E-Series Terabit switch/router from Force10 Networks interoperating with Neterion's Xframe 10 GbE network adapters and running Full Error Recovery iSCSI software from PyX Technologies.

Featuring the same quality of service and system robustness at a fraction of the total cost of ownership and maintenance of Fibre Channel architectures, iSCSI with Full Error Recovery is also free of the distance limitations of Fibre Channel, enabling a truly global SAN.

"From a software perspective, the throughput we observed is only possible because our iSCSI implementation supports multiple connections per session," said Nicholas Bellinger, Chief Software Architect for PyX Technologies, "and this is unique within the storage industry." ...Neterion profile, ...PyX Technologies profile, Record Breaking Storage


Editor:- March 29, 2005 - a new article is published today in the SPARC Product Directory, called - "Sun and its SPARC IHVs - Paint it Black? or Not Fade Away?." Active marketing support for Sun's SPARC platform by Independent Hardware Vendors in the first quarter of 2005 has declined to a lower level now than it was back in 1990, the year after Sun launched the SPARCstation 1. Does this mean a bleak prospect for users and stakeholders in the market?

This article describes what's happening now in the SPARC compatible systems market , and puts it into a historical context. It also predicts which segments in the Sun compatible hardware market have the most upside potential for suitable partners. Sun's past strategies in storage failed to make an impact outside Sun's Unix core. But Sun's new storage strategy may do much better. ...read the article, ...SPARC Product Directory


San Ramon, CA - March 28, 2005 - SBE Inc. today announced that it has signed a definitive merger agreement to acquire PyX Technologies, Inc., a privately-held company specializing in the development of iSCSI software solutions.

"We believe that acquiring PyX Technologies will help propel SBE into the forefront of IP storage innovation and enable us to secure a strong foothold as the dominant player in the iSCSI SAN arena. We intend to leverage the R&D that PyX has invested in developing its iSCSI Target and Initiator products, and use that established technology as a platform from which to build next generation IP storage solutions, including support for 10-Gigabit Ethernet, encryption, acceleration and PCI Express," said Dan Grey, President and CEO of SBE. ...PyX Technologies profile, ...SBE profile, Acquired companies, iSCSI

Editor's comments:- pure play iSCSI companies have been mostly living on air or their investors, because the market is 10 times smaller in revenue and 2 to 3 years slower taking off than was predicted originally by IDC. When I interviewed PyX Technologies in June 2004, about the problems in the iSCSI market I was sceptical. Here's an extract from that article:-

"STORAGEsearch has seen a lot of storage companies whose main business plan is blatantly to be acquired... Those companies just don't do any marketing.... Do you have a business plan which includes marketing long term as an independent technology company?" They said yes. But as today's news story shows startups can't live on credit cards forever. They need customers or the cushion of a company which is already earning revenue from other established products.



SEATTLE - March 28, 2005 - Zetta Systems announced the release of ZettaServer IR for RealTime Data Protection and Instant Recovery. ZettaServer IR is a software-based solution that supports both Fibre Channel and iSCSI storage for Windows and UNIX that delivers unlimited snapshot capabilities, superior management of mixed use infrastructures, and the ability to non-disruptively scale storage.

ZettaServer IR, deployed using off-the-shelf industry-standard hardware, delivers two "firsts" to companies seeking to implement an affordable and highly flexible solution to address e-mail, database and file server data protection needs. ZettaServer IR is the first product to offer connection-independent instantaneous recovery for Fibre Channel, iSCSI and IP-based storage infrastructures, allowing companies with blended environments to easily protect data, regardless of storage platform. ZettaServer IR is also the first solution to enable companies to recover from data disasters in seconds, instead of hours and days, by using powerful SnapWrite technology to protect data. Software pricing starts at $5,000 for single server protection and scales to $18,000 for protecting multiple Email, Database and File Servers. ...Zetta Systems profile


WESTBOROUGH, Mass. - March 28, 2005 - ExaGrid Systems today announced that the company has raised an additional $13.5 million from existing investors Highland Capital Partners and Sigma Partners. With sales for the company's Advanstor storage and data protection solution already underway through direct and indirect channels, ExaGrid will apply the new round to expand marketing and sales efforts to reach midsized organizations struggling with the costs and complexity of ensuring that their data is protected.

"The complexity of data protection is a recurring theme we hear from executives in our Global Customer Advisory network, especially in light of new regulations and IT resource constraints," said Jo Tango, general partner with Highland and ExaGrid Board member. "ExaGrid has obviously capitalized on this trend and created an innovative solution that addresses customer issues by reducing complexity and costs. The company is experiencing significant momentum - converting 100% of their beta sites to customers, winning new sales at a rapid rate and expanding their reseller channels. ExaGrid is in a strong position for the next stage of growth." ...ExaGrid Systems profile


MILPITAS, Calif. - March 23, 2005 - LSI Logic Corporation today announced validation of its Serial Attached SCSI RAID-On-Chip solution, currently running two industry-leading RAID stacks, LSI Logic's MegaRAID and the HP SmartArray, and demonstrating RAID 6 functionality. RAID 6 capability permits advanced data guarding protection which allows users to recover data during two drive failures. This is even more critical in SAS environments where systems will often also use lower MTTF SATA spindles in combination with enterprise SAS hard disk drives.

"SAS ROC integration tests using full-featured and proven RAID software stacks from LSI Logic and HP are milestones that further solidify Serial Attached SCSI as an I/O technology whose time has arrived," said Brian Garrett, an analyst at the Enterprise Strategy Group. "Manufacturers and OEMs who choose to partner with LSI Logic to deploy certified SAS ROC solutions will be well positioned to take advantage of the enhanced performance and reliability of SAS hard drives and RAID 6".

LSI Logic has SAS design wins at 4 of the world's top 5 server manufacturers, including HP, and was the first company in the industry to receive Microsoft logo certification for a SAS host bus adapter. ...LSI Logic profile, Serial Attached SCSI


POWAY, Calif. - March 23, 2005 - InoStor Corp. today announced it has been acquired by Tandberg Data ASA which purchased the company from its minority shareholders. The acquisition allows Tandberg to strengthen its product distribution in North America and Latin America. InoStor Corp. was established in 2002 when Tandberg Data Inc., the U.S. distribution arm of Tandberg Data, merged with LAND-5 Corp, a disk-based development company. With transaction announced today, InoStor now becomes a wholly owned subsidiary of Tandberg Data.

"The acquisition results in several major benefits for our company," stated InoStor COO Ken Cruden. "First, it allows us to increase our penetration into the tape and disk storage markets. Second, it strengthens our OEM and channel relationships that are essential for successfully launching our new LTO tape drives and tape automation products. And third, it gives us greater resources in promoting the licensing of our revolutionary RAIDn and Multi-Drive Redundancy technologies." ...InoStor profile, ...Tandberg Data profile, Acquired storage companies, RAID systems

Editor's comments:- earlier this month Tandberg announced the acquisition of UK based RAID maker - Computer Design Group.



Hoboken, N.J - March 22, 2005 - NSI Software, Inc. today affirmed its leadership in protecting Microsoft Exchange Server by announcing the deployment of 12,000 licenses of its award winning Double-Take solution. Using patented technology, Double-Take replicates changes to Exchange data continuously as they occur, providing up-to-the-second protection with maximum performance and minimal use of network bandwidth. By replicating data at the byte level to a back up server, Double- Take can easily failover in the event of an outage to ensure little or no loss of data or productivity. ...NSI profile, Backup software


Fountain Valley, CA - March 22, 2005 - StorCase Technology today announced it has extended its long term focus on products well-suited for the government sector by formally becoming a GSA Schedule holder. StorCase product development emphasis has been very successful in satisfying Commercial- and Rugged-off-the-Shelf product requirements for a variety of security and military applications. Without incurring the additional costs typically associated with Mil Specs, StorCase has been producing COTS and ROTS storage solutions for the government since 1989.

"StorCase is expanding its government business focus and becoming a GSA schedule holder is key to increasing our visibility," said Alex Sebens, Manager of Government Sales, StorCase. "Working with our channel partners, we see tremendous growth potential in this sector."

The secure and versatile Data Express removable drive carrier and the rugged steel InfoStation backplane enclosure are two examples of well established ROTS and COTS StorCase product lines designed specifically to protect mission-critical data. StorCase enclosures are rugged, flexible and rigorously 100% tested to meet the stringent environmental demands of land, air and sea applications. ...StorCase Technology profile, Military Storage


Concord, CA - March 22, 2005 - TechRestore, Inc. announced today that they have launched a new iPod hard drive upgrade program for owners of the worlds most popular audio player. The new service provides a fast and hassle-free method for iPod owners worldwide to increase their music and storage capacity in full-sized iPod models. The TechRestore 24-Hour iPod Upgrade service is a complete, door-to-door overnight service for customers in the continental U.S. Once an upgrade is scheduled, a RestoreBox is sent via overnight courier to the customers home, office or school where their iPod is picked up and brought back overnight to TechRestore. Within 24-hours of receipt, the upgrade is completed and the iPod is sent back to the customer's location via overnight courier. The flat-rate iPod hard drive upgrade service starts at just $119 and includes all overnight shipping charges, parts and installation. The upgrade is performed in an anti-static and dust-free environment by a TechRestore Certified Technician. ...TechRestore profile, Storage Services

Other news on this page

SiliconSystems Signs Distribution Partner in Japan

SCSI Toolbox Launches Bus Analyzer Module

New World Record Set for iSCSI Throughput

Report on Sun's New Core Strategies for IHVs

SBE Acquires PyX Technologies

Zetta Systems Releases ZettaServer IR

ExaGrid Secures $13.5 Million in Series B Funding

LSI Logic's SAS RAID-On-Chip Does RAID 6

Tandberg Data Gets Acquisitive

NSI Chalks Up 12,000 Licenses for Double-Take

StorCase Becomes GSA Schedule Holder

New 24 Hour iPod Hard Drive Upgrade Service

last week's news (archive)

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Terrorbyte liked to test out hot new backup technologies.
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Nibble:- Will Storage Search Appliances Create a Real New Market?

E
ver since the widespread use of search-engines on the world wide web in 1996 it's been a bone of contention for marketers and knowledge workers that finding critical data within their own corporate networks is harder than finding useful data on the web.

Although some search technology companies like Google and Thunderstone offer search appliances for use in company intranets - they don't solve two basic basic problems.
  • Not all enterprise data is available in file formats which are understood by search-engines which were originally designed for a web world.
  • Not all enterprise data is amenable to access by crawlers. For example data in directly attached storage or connected to fibre-channel SANs. Also the performance overhead and security risks inherent in allowing search agents access to all the servers on your network may be unacceptable.
The importance of unstructured data in emails, word documents, powerpoint presentations etc is well understood. In the last few years backup software vendors have brought out special products to make sure that these files are archived and retrievable to meet security regulations. But that's not the same as making this data easy to randomly access for the purposes of business intelligence or creating a new strategic plan.

That's why two announcements in mid March by Index Engines and Kazeon Systems are interesting - because they suggest that a new generation of storage start up companies has been quitely working on this problem and is starting to offer products.

The approach from Index Engines, is to install an indexing appliance in the path of the network backup system. This avoids the problem of network topologies - because wherever the data came from - it should end up passing through the backup tape or disk system - at the time that a backup is done. This solution indexes the data in real-time - with minimal impact on the backup time - but has the disadvantage of scalability. It will be too slow for many users. But it's a real product and is a good start in this market. My view is this company needs to start making deals with tape backup companies pronto - so that they can bundle the new products as a value-added option. Otherwise sales will be slow as few users will be willing to take the risk that the appliance from an unknown new company might somehow affect their backup.

The approach from Kazeon Systems is more cryptic - because they don't have a marketable product yet - although the company does say that it is being tried in real customer sites. This sounds like a more scalable solution - because the company's initial press release said it could deal with "billions of objects and the information they contain." We'll have to wait till the summer to see more details.

But we can expect to see a lot more companies in this market space marry storage search technology to data archiving. When that happens we'll create a special index page for it. Until then just watch this space.

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ActionFront recovers lost information from downed or inaccessible computers and backups and corrupted or deleted file sets.

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Serial Attached SCSI - Delivering Flexibility to the Data Center - article by LSI Logic and Maxtor

If you think you already know SAS because you know SATA and traditional SCSI then think again. Sometimes disruptive technologies wear an unassuming disguise. In fiction, Clark Kent, Frodo Baggins and Buffy Summers at first seem harmless, but we see them change into Superman, the Ring Bearer and the Slayer.

SAS too comes cloaked in plain garb - with a physical layer which looks a lot like SATA. But like the Incredible Hulk there are muscles rippling under that shirt - and you would be wrong to dismiss SAS so lightly. There's a lot more inside this interface than it says on the box as this informative article reveals.

...read the article, ...LSI Logic profile, ...Maxtor profile, Serial Attached SCSI

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