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2006, October week 4, storage news archive

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Squeak! - the Solid State Disks Buyers Guide
article:- a Short History of Disk to Disk Backup
Squeak! - the Fastest Growing Storage Companies
Squeak! - the 10 biggest storage companies in 2008?
Squeak! - Why are Most Analysts Wrong About Solid State Disks?
article:- the Benefits of Serial Attached SCSI for External Subsystems
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SNW, Orlando, FL - October 31, 2006 - QLogic Corp today introduced the SANbox 9000 Series of switches. With a list price starting at $50,450, the SANbox 9000 can scale to 128 ports in a single 4U chassis, offers redundancy for high availability, and supports a family of I/O blades for intelligent networking. QLogic says its new switch takes less rack space, power and cooling than any director switch available today. ...QLogic profile, Rackmount Storage, SAN switches

Storage Networking World, Orlando, FL - October 31, 2006 - Spectra Logic today announced the Spectra D500 - a 3U network storage appliance with 2, 4 or 8 terabytes raw capacity. The D500 integrates a customized RAID protected disk array, a dual core Xeon server, NAS head and a network interface. Storage managers can use the Spectra D500 as an NFS/CIFS disk-based cache for near-line data storage before archiving to tape.

Separate mirrored operating system disks ensure raw storage is dedicated to data backup and archive, while also providing redundancy and high availability of the operating system. The D500's BlueScale interface is the same that thousands of Spectra Logic customers have used for years. The Spectra D500 will begin shipping in December 2006. Pricing for a D500 with 8 x 3.5 inch Hitachi drives providing 2T of native capacity begins at $11,995. ,,,Spectra Logic profile, Disk to disk backup, Storage Events

JOENSUU, FINLAND - October 30, 2006- Blancco announced today that they will make available donations of their data erasure software to eligible nonprofit organizations via the nonprofit technology website TechSoup. Each nonprofit organization with 501c3 designation will be entitled to 500 Blancco licenses. Like commercial enterprises, nonprofits face a critical challenge when they want to recycle, resell, or reuse obsolete computers: the data remaining on the hard drives need to be professionally wiped in order to maximize data security and prevent data leaks or identity theft. The software is operated from a central server, so users do not need to install the software on each computer prior to data wiping. It is designed not only for PCs and laptops but also for servers with several hard drives. ...Blancco profile, Disk Sanitizers

Columbia, MD & Waltham, MA - October 30, 2006 - The Baltimore Ravens have signed AmeriVault to defend their critical data. Like the Baltimore Ravens, many NFL teams are re-evaluating their disaster recovery plans. At an NFL conference held this summer IT personnel were urged to consider the possibility of unplanned outages and disasters, such as that experienced by the New Orleans Saints when their stadium was hit by Hurricane Katrina. The recommendation for a disaster contingency and recovery plan was put forth, including using data replication and ensuring off-site storage.

"While we were trucking our tapes to an off-site location, it was not as secure or as far enough away from potential danger as we wanted it to be," said Bill Jankowski, Senior Director of IT. "In addition, the amount of time and resources the backup and recovery process took was a constant source of frustration. With AmeriVault, backup and recovery is effortless and accurate. We don't even think about the daily backup because it happens automatically and when we need to do a recovery, it's fast and all of our data is there." ...AmeriVault profile, ...Baltimore Ravens, online backup

SNW, Orlando, Fla. - October 30, 2006 - LSI Logic Corp today announced it is now sampling second-generation RAID-on-Chip SAS adapters to all major oems. The new MegaRAID products support RAID 6 and are powered by the proven LSI SAS1078 IC I/O storage engine that transparently performs all data protection, data checking, and restoration tasks. The SAS1078 features a PCI Express host interface enabling the new MegaRAID products to overcome traditional PCI host bus bottlenecks, delivering 1.5GB/s sustained sequential throughput. The MegaRAID SAS 8708ELP and 8888ELP adapters also offer battery backup options to protect cached data. This can be an inexpensive alternative to using a UPS. The new adapters will ship in production volume by year-end. ...LSI Logic profile, Serial Attached SCSI, RAID controllers

FREMONT, Calif. - October 30, 2006 - Plextor LLC today announced the PX-755UF DVD±R/RW CD-R/RW drive. The new PX-755UF DVD/CD drive, which ships in mid-November, is the first Plextor external drive to feature 10X DVD+R Double-Layer recording speed.

"The fact that the external drive has a dual FireWire / USB interface means that it can be easily shared around a small office or professional studio." said Michael Arbisi, vice president of channel sales for Plextor. MSRP is $159. ...Plextor profile

El Segundo, Calif. - October 30, 2006 - the third-party DRAM module business is chalking up a great year, with revenue growth of 15.7% in the first half compared to the same period in 2005, and an expected rise of 28.5% for all of 2006, according to iSuppli Corp. "The global third-party DRAM module market posted $5.1 billion in revenue in the first half, and is expected to achieve $11.3 billion in revenue for the entire year," observed Ally Liao, analyst, memory/storage for iSuppli.

The top 10 - 3rd party DRAM companies ranked by iSuppli according to revenue are:-
  1. Kingston Technology
  2. SMART Modular Technologies
  3. A-Data
  4. Crucial Technology
  5. TwinMOS Technologies
  6. MA Labs
  7. Ramaxel Technology
  8. Corsair Memory
  9. Apacer Technology
  10. Transcend
...iSuppli profile Market research, article:- 3rd Party RAM, Your Rights to Server Warranties

Editor:- October 30, 2006 - What's So Important About Storage? - I'm often asked that question. Scroll down to see how I answer in my new blog published today (in the yellow box on the right).

LOWELL, Mass. - October 30, 2006 - Acopia Networks, Inc. today announced its file area networking vision and product direction. As defined by founder and chairman, Cheng Wu, Acopia's FAN roadmap details plans to leverage intelligence in the network, simplifying management, and optimizing delivery of file-based information assets. ...Acopia Networks

Editor's comments:- Acopia sounds like a medical condition. But it it's just a marketing malady. When marketers invent a new word like FAN - they are mostly trying to hide something. In this case - the concept looks remarkably similar to a storage operating system - an old idea which many software companies have tried before. The storage OS story has always ended up with the company pushing it going bust or being acquired. The reason? Because taking on Microsoft, Linux and Sun in the OS market - is what is truly at the heart of the concept.

PUCHHEIM, Germany - October 26, 2006 - Open-E today announced a turnkey IP-storage operating system that supports both iSCSI and traditional NAS simultaneously. Open-E DSS is Open-E´s 4th generation of field-proven storage software and ships in an internal USB-DOM (Disk-On-Module).

"We have integrated new and improved backup and recovery applications for proactive and simple protection of the stored information, like iSCSI Volume Replication, Task Mechanism, Backup Utilities and support for Virtual Tape Libraries to virtualize storage as tape hardware for backup-to-disk in existing archiving policies." said Krzysztof Franek, Open-E´s President.

The new edition also supports Serial Attached SCSI controllers from Adaptec and LSI Logic. The retail price of Open-E's Data Storage Server is $1,250. ...Open-E profile

MILPITAS, Calif. - October 25, 2006 - LSI Logic Corp today announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire StoreAge Networking Technologies Ltd. for approximately $50 million in cash. LSI anticipates offering employment to all StoreAge employees, who are expected to join the company's Engenio storage group. ...LSI Logic profile, ...StoreAge profile

Editor's comments:- storage companies whose names begin with "stora..." are well represented in our list of approximately 400 acquired or gone away companies.

Los Angeles, CA - October 25, 2006 - Diino U.S. today announced the launch of Version 4.0 of its Diino client software. This new solution adds mobile phone access, personal blogging, secure email, and automatic backup to its powerful feature set. Diino is offering 2GB of free storage to new users. Diino V4.0 offers up to 1 Terabyte of online storage in a standard account, and can accommodate transfer of large files from any Web-enabled device. ...Diino profile

Editor:- October 25, 2006 - a debate on flash versus DRAM in solid state disks has been taking place this week between Texas Memory Systems and's long term prediction - which we published a year or so ago - is that eventually ALL enterprise server acceleration SSDs will use flash instead of DRAM. But that time is not yet.

We have an article in the pipeline about the gap in the market for flash based box systems - such as those already made by BiTMICRO Networks. Here's a taster.

The main obstacles to flash versus DRAM SSDs as user orderable enterprise server upgrades are the marketing and business models of SSD companies - and not just technology.

Flash SSD oems are accustomed to a sales cycle in which they collaboratively design in a product which gets used in manufacturing volumes (hundreds to thousands) by a single customer. While flash SSD revenues are growing at 40% to 100% per annum flash SSD oems aren't going to waste time spending the same sales effort on a single end-user who might only buy 1 to 5 disks (and needs more technical support than the oem customer).

In current enterprise server environments (dominated by DRAM based SSD makers for historical reasons) there's a high knowledge base required to close a sale. Because if you don't set up the applications properly then the SSD will give you no speedup at all - instead of the 2x or 3x to 25x that is achieved in successful systems. Black art is needed to set it up correctly. And SSD magicians are thin on the ground.

But fast forward to when Microsoft migrates its SSD aware Vista kernel from notebooks to its server operating systems...Everything will change. Solaris and Linux will be ashes - or have to start crash SSD programs to catch up. That's a 2008 timeframe rather than today.

As to whether flash is fast enough... I suspect that the write problem in high end systems will be solved by a hybrid design which uses a different type of flash or other memory technology in the write cache pipeline - rather than a pure flash solution. the StorageMojo article, ...Texas Memory Systems profile, Storage publications, Solid state disks

Redwood City, Calif - October 25, 2006 - MonoSphere Inc. today announced it has closed $11 million in Series B funding. Led by Intel Capital, this funding round also included additional investments from existing investors, ComVentures and Lightspeed Venture Partners. This new funding enabled MonoSphere to expand its national reach by opening a New York office.

MonoSphere's Storage Horizon software is used by Global 3000 companies to automate their storage capacity planning processes by providing a unified view of current and projected storage capacity usage. These processes are aimed at reducing storage infrastructure spending by as much as 50%. In today's data intensive enterprise, despite shrinking unit costs, yearly storage spending is rising faster than overall IT budgets due to exponential growth of storage consumption by applications, compliance requirements, and data protection strategies. ...MonoSphere profile, Storage Software, Venture Capital Funds in Storage

SCOTTS VALLEY, Calif. - October 24, 2006 - Seagate Technology today reported revenue of $2.8 billion for the quarter ended September 29 - 34% up on the year ago period. GAAP net income was $59 million. Included in the $2.8 billion of revenue is approximately $344 million from legacy Maxtor designed products. ...Seagate profile

Editor's comments:- even without the contribution from the Maxtor acquisition - Seagate's revenue growth is a healthy 18%.

Editor:- October 24, 2006 - a new publication called Storage Markets launched today. I say "publication" but from the description it also has aspects in common with a market research company and even an online game. You need to log in to the site to participate - and I never log in to anything that I don't have to - so I don't know what lies beyond the publicly viewable pages. Here's what their PR says ...

Storage Markets uses a technique called a predictive market to help professionals express their opinions about market and technology trends in the data storage industry. By participating in the Storage Markets' online virtual stock trading website, the storage community makes its own industry predictions through the determination of the share price, which effectively represents the probability that the underlying claim will be correct.

"Storage Markets delivers a rewarding, new way for storage professionals to express their opinion about future technology and market trends in the storage industry," said John Ives, president and co-founder of Storage Markets. "Every opinion is aggregated and the results are demonstrated by the share price of a particular outcome. In turn, this kind of data can be useful for vendors making strategic decisions or to support other forms of industry analysis." ...Storage Markets profile, Market research, Storage publications

COSTA MESA, Calif. - October 24, 2006 - Emulex Corp today announced that it has achieved the #1 position in 4Gb/s host bus adapter revenue share, with 44% according toDell'Oro Group's second quarter SAN market report. Emulex also increased its market share by 8 percentage points from the previous quarter, according to the report.

Research from TheInfoPro also reinforces Emulex's leading position within enterprise data centers, citing overall reliability and strong partnerships with Fortune 1000 companies as key factors supporting Emulex's leadership position. TheInfoPro's Storage Wave 7 Study published in April, confirms Emulex's continued market leadership position with focused end user research. According to the data, 49% of the Fortune 1000 storage professionals surveyed name Emulex as their primary supplier of HBAs. ...Dell'Oro Group profile, ...Emulex profile, Fibre-channel, SAN

Editor's comments:- Emulex used to be the #1 company in Fibre-channel period... But they lost that slot a few years ago to QLogic. Regaining the #1 title - even just in the selective niche segments named in today's story - will give their morale a boost - and shows buyers that the game's not yet over.

Taipei, Taiwan - October 24, 2006 - PQI has released a USB flash drive which is also a pen - the Cool Drive U350. The length was carefully chosen to be 3" - not too long and not too short to apply a firm grip on. The PQI LED logo that sits at the top lights up orange when disk activities occur. ...PQI profile, USB storage, flash

SAN JOSE, Calif. - October 24, 2006 - Hitachi Global Storage Technologies today announced worldwide availability of its Deskstar T7K500, Deskstar 7K160 and CinemaStar hard disk drives. The 3.5" hard drives, with upto 500G capacity, feature 7,200 RPM spin speeds, 998Mb/s data throughput and SATA interfaces. ...Hitachi profile

Slough, UK - October 23, 2006 - Yosemite Technologies, Inc. announced today it has appointed George Symons as Company CEO. Symons joins Yosemite from EMC, where he served as Chief Technology Officer for Information Management, responsible for defining EMC's product and technical strategy. He also played key roles in the integration of Legato enterprise backup and recovery products and Documentum content management software into EMC. ...Yosemite Technologies profile

Seoul, Korea - October 23, 2006 - Samsung today announced that it has licensed its OneNAND flash memory technology to STMicroelectronics. OneNAND provides a sustained data 'read' speed of 108MByte/s, which is 4x faster than conventional NAND Flash memory, and a 'write' speed of 10MByte/s, which is more than 46x faster than multi-level-cell NOR Flash memory. ...Samsung profile, ...STMicroelectronics profile Flash Storage

KFAR-SABA, Israel - October 23, 2006 - M-Systems today announced financial results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2006. Revenues totaled $217 million a 41% increase compared with revenues in the third quarter of 2005 and a 4% sequential increase compared with the second quarter of 2006.

"The third quarter of 2006 was a unique quarter for M-Systems" said the company's CEO Dov Moran. "..We announced our acquisition by SanDisk at the end of July. Nonetheless, we grew our revenues significantly compared to the third quarter of 2005. We expect demand to continue to grow in the fourth quarter, typical for the holiday season." ...M-Systems profile

BOULDER, Colo. - October 23, 2006 - ProStor Systems today announced the appointment of industry veteran Randy Kerns as its new chief technology officer. Prior to joining ProStor, Kerns served as an independent industry analyst, covering storage and storage management software including SAN and NAS analysis. He also was a partner at the Evaluator Group, responsible for product analysis and company evaluation. Kerns assisted major end-user clients in developing their storage strategies and vendors with their product strategies.

With more than 30 years of experience in the computer technology industry and a background in product design and development, Kerns has also served as vice president of strategy and planning for storage at Sun Microsystems. He developed disk and tape systems for mainframe attachment at IBM and StorageTek; disk systems for attachment to open systems and proprietary computer platforms at Fujitsu and Tandem Computers; and tape and disk systems for both open systems and mainframes at two start-up companies. ...ProStor Systems profile, SPARC Product Directory, Storage People

Other news on this page

QLogic's New SANbox

Spectra Logic Launches 3U Disk Backup

Blancco Offers Nonprofit ORGs Free Disk Wipes

AmeriVault backs up the Baltimore Ravens

LSI Ships 2nd Generation MegaRAID SAS Adapters

Plextor Ships 10X DVD+R

3rd Party DRAM Revenue Increased 28% this Year

Acopia - When the Data Hits the FAN

IP OS Ships in USB Module Supports VTL and SAS

LSI Logic Acquires StoreAge

Diino ver 4.0 Online Backup

Squeak! - Flash versus DRAM SSD Debate

MonoSphere Secures $11 million Funding

Seagate Reports 34% Revenue Growth

Storage Markets Opens its Door to Players

Emulex Reclaims Fibre Channel Crown

PQI Pens USB Flash Release

Hitachi Ships New SATA Hard Drives

Yosemite Appoints EMC Veteran as CEO

STMicroelectronics Licenses OneNAND

M-Systems Reports Revenue Up 41%

Sun Veteran Joins ProStor Systems

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Nibble:- What's So Important About Storage?

You know what it's like when you meet people for the first time at a social gathering - or get to do catch-up with some distant friends or relations you haven't seen for a year or so - and they ask "what do you do?" or "what are you doing now?"

That's a big question. I think - How much time have you got? - The answer is much easier when the other person is involved with some kind of technology. Fortunately a lot of my friends do work in the computer industry. The knowledgeable ones tease me by saying "Are you still doing that Sun stuff?" - as if referring to some kind of harmful addictive narcotic. Well - maybe they're right - considering how things turned out. A lot of companies didn't survive close contact with that SPARC stuff I used to babble about. But I kicked the habit 8 years ago - when I started this storage site.

"I cover the storage market now" - I say.

"What's so important about storage? - Isn't that disk drives and CDs?"

I want to say - "It's the most important part of the whole computer market. More important than servers. More important than processor chips. More important than who wins in the Linux / Windows / Solaris (whoops - the odd flashback still comes out) - debate."

But then I think back to earlier conversations I have had on this - "what do you do for a living - and what's so important about xxx" - theme?

In the late 1970s - the subject was microprocessors. I was an electronics engineer keen to explain to anyone who wanted to know (and looking back now - probably most didn't want to know in the detail I gave them) about why processors were so important - the differences between the various types - and the peripheral chipsets, development tools, problems of in-circuit emulators when the product you were designing worked with the Intel ICE - but stopped working - when you unplugged the ICE and replaced it with the real chip.

"Am I boring you?" - I'd ask after 20 minutes explaining to a nurse friend at a party - why a multiplexed address data bus reduced the pin count - and gave the option of either a smaller PCB footprint or additional on-board functions like timers and I/O. But nurses work long hours and can sleep while standing - so no harm was done.

After I had developed my social skills a little more - I realized that the best answer to give to the question "why are microprocessors so important?" - when asked at a party in 1978 or so - was "Less people will be needed to work in factories and chemical plants. Microprocessors will replace a lot of operators - and do their jobs better."

My tact had not advanced as much as my social skills. This was when I was living in an area surrounded by chemical plants, coal mines, steel works etc - which employed most of the people in the local towns. But I was designing the first generation of factory and process automation equipment - with the confidence of youth - I knew that would all change. And the new technology was giving me a job. "They would smile - and say "not in my lifetime." It was unimaginable. But it happened anyway. Quicker than even I thought.

Later reincarnations of the "what's so important about" question varied with my career over the next few decades. When I worked in the defense market - I used to say - "Do you remember in Superman - when they ask - Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No - it's Superman! - Well our side (the good guys) will know. A lot sooner than the bad guys."

Looking back - I have sometimes understated the impact of new technologies.

I think all of us - who were working in the web economy in 1995 / 96 - knew it was going to have a big effect on the economy. But despite the hype of the dotcom boom - the real effect on how businesses are run - how you decide where to eat or stay when travelling - how entertainment is promoted and delivered - how you buy your catfood and groceries when you don't have time to go to the shops - has penetrated deeper into everyday life than I imagined it would when I started publishing online.

Back to the question of - What's this storage stuff? - and - Why is it so important? - which I get asked a lot nowadays.

If the person I'm talking to - works with enterprise computing - I usually say something like "Solid state disk storage will halve the number of servers you need in your company. Or put another way - it will impact Intel's processor sales more than anything done by AMD."

If the person I'm talking to - works for themselves - and relies heavily on their laptop - I give them the good news that the next time they buy a new portable PC - it will run nearly as fast as a desktop (instead of 5 times slower) - and it will have the same charging regime as their cellphone - and as a bonus - it won't feel as uncomfortably hot when they use it on their lap.

The easiest reply the other day - was when I was explaining to my cousin (who's a lawyer) how what's going on in the storage market will impact her 14 year old son - who was having supper with us. I had already embarrassed him at the start of supper by speculating that the 3 most important things in his life were:- PCs, sport and girls. He nodded.

"He won't need such a big house..." I explained. " I need a big house - because I've got about 5,000 books and countless CDs, DVDs and older stuff like tapes and vinyl - and it all takes up a load of space. He's already started running all his media entertainment on PC technology - so throughout his adult life most of his books and music and movies and games will fit onto a single disk which he can carry around with him in his pocket. That's probably good for the environment too - less rooms to heat - less wasted materials - and" an ungreen thought slipped in here "maybe people will actually have space in their garage(s) to park their cars."

And that's not even the whole story...

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the Top 20 Most Popular Storage Search Categories
The top 20 most popular storage categories on in September 2006 were as follows... Figures in brackets (n) indicate rank the month before.
  1. Hard drives (1)
  2. Disk to disk backup (4)
  3. Solid state disks (2)
  4. NAS (3)
  5. Flash memory (6)
  6. Serial ATA (SATA) (5)
  7. RAID systems (8)
  8. Serial Attached SCSI (10)
  9. Backup software (9)
  10. USB storage (7)
  11. Removable Storage (12)
  12. iSCSI (14)
  13. SAN (11)
  14. Serial Attached SCSI - new entry to top 20
  15. Market research & analysts (13)
  16. Acquired, dead, renamed etc (1153)
  17. Online backup & storage (17)
  18. Boxes & enclosures (16)
  19. RAM - new entry to top 20
  20. Data recovery (18)
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