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storage news - 2007, March week 2

. Megabyte's selection of storage news
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about the storage market
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the Top 10 SSD Companies
sugaring flash for the enterprise
SSD Myths and Legends - "write endurance"
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Super Talent Joins SATA SSD Market

There were 22 companies in the SSD market in this week of SSD market history

13 of which also supported the SATA interface

Is more always better?
The ups and downs of capacitor hold up in 2.5" military flash SSDs

SSD ad - click for more info

What happens to your data when the storage media they are stored on gets too old? The afterlife for things like disk drives and RAID systems is not something that most of us think about much. It's not the glamorous end of the storage market.
Do You Really Need Disk Sanitizers?


NVMe is the new SCSI.
2.5" NVMe PCIe SSDs market guide




SSD ad - click for more info
San Jose, California - March 14, 2007 - Super Talent Technology today announced a full range of SATA solid state disks.

The new line is offered in industry standard 1.8", 2.5", and 3.5" form factors, making these drives 100% compatible with conventional hard disk drives. However, these products are built with only solid state Flash components. Since they contain no moving parts, SSD drives have the advantage of being far more rugged and reliable than regular hard drives, while using 85% less power.

Super Talent's 1.8" SATA drives are offered in up to 32G capacities; 2.5" drives are available in up to 64G; and for high capacity requirements Super Talent offers a 128G 3.5" drive. Super Talent designs and manufactures its SSD drives in its state-of-the-art Silicon Valley factory and has validated these products in a wide variety of motherboards and laptops to ensure compatibility. These new products will be available in April to OEMs and resellers. ...Super Talent profile

Fujitsu Launches 40G Byte Car Drive

Sunnyvale, CA - March 14, 2007 - Fujitsu today launched the MHW2040AC, a 40GB 4,200 RPM PATA mobile hard disk drive for extreme environments.

The "navigation series" hard drives operate from -30° C to 85° C making it suitable for outdoor environments. It will ship in the second quarter of 2007. ...Fujitsu profile, Flash Storage, Military Storage

Drive Cleanser Wipes Vista

Burlington, MA - March 14, 2007 - Acronis, Inc. announced that its Drive Cleanser 6.0 (typical list price $49.99) now supports Microsoft Vista.

"Acronis Drive Cleanser has been honored on multiple occasions as the best disk wiping application on the market," said Walter Scott, CEO of Acronis. "The addition of Vista support means that now users of virtually all versions of the desktop Windows OS can, with complete confidence, delete the data from any partition or the entire hard disk and know the data will never, ever be resurrected for purposes such as industrial espionage or identity theft. The product is used by corporate customers and consumers to wipe an old hard disk before it is disposed of or repurposed as additional storage." ...Acronis profile, Disk Sanitizers

iStor Sweetens iSCSI Suite

Irvine, Calif. – March 14, 2007 – iStor Networks, Inc today announced the release of GigaStor Version 1.4.0, the newest version of its award winning iSCSI storage management software suite.

"The features and functionality we've brought to the software are a result of real-world feedback from our customers and partners," said Frank C. Huang, co-founder and executive vice president of engineering, iStor Networks.

For example - supporting the unique needs of the video market, Version 1.4.0 enables Apple Macintosh users to configure each volume to no-op the SCSI sync cache command. This feature increases performance by solving the common problem of video applications dropping frames due to increased latency of I/O commands when journaling is enabled as part of an Apple file system.

Enhanced diagnostics features:- includes polling disk drives to determine if a SMART threshold has been exceeded, in which case an event log entry is created and email notification is sent so the user can take corrective action. iStor's GigaStorATX controller and the iS326 products are available in both 1GbE and 10GbE solutions. ...iStor Networks profile

Editor's comments:-
the improvement in iSCSI performance is one of the reasons that the Fibre-channel SAN market isn't growing as fast as analysts once predicted. iStor has a technical note on its site which includes some iSCSI performance figures. Performance can win (or lose) markets. I was reviewing some links in my old SAN history article yesterday and was reminded about an article by TrueSAN Networks. It showed how a print shop or publisher (in 2000) could save thousands of hours of productive time each year by using SAN instead of ethernet. Which brings us back to the recent blog by Sun's CEO Moving A Petabyte of Data. It looks like he's still tied to tape.

Condre Says SAS/ SATA Switch will Lower Expansion Costs

MINNEAPOLIS - March 14, 2007 - Condre Storage, Inc. today announced the SASX12A, a SAS/SATA storage switch.

Condre has developed the SAS/SATA board for integration into their solutions for the digital video space, video surveillance, D2D market and users who need large amounts of storage with a very limited budget. The SASX12A can also be used with products from Condre Storage's direct raid partners as a expansion enclosure.

"Condre Storage has worked with manufacturers to solidify our lead as a technical distribution source. Our engineers have approved the SASX12A with LSI's SAS Megaraid card and ATTO's ExpressSAS raid card" according to Condre Storage President Denny Maetzold. "Condre is proud to be able to embed the SASX12A card into a solution, assemble with drives, test, support the items and still be a price leader in an effort to maximize our customer's mb/dollar cost" ...Condre Storage profile, Storage Boxes

Qsan Embeds Remote iSCSI Replication into RAID Controller

Taipei, Taiwan - March 14, 2007 - Qsan today announced that its QCopy (iSCSI remote replication) is now enabled in firmware in its P120C dual-port iSCSI-SATAII RAID controllers without additional license cost.

All a user needs to do using the web interface is to take a snapshot first, identify the destination storage, and then trigger the data copying process. Cost-sensitive SMBs and certain vertical markets are now able to deploy advanced disaster recovery infrastructure at the storage layer by using QCopy embedded in Qsan's IP SAN solution P120C. No purchase of additional backup software is needed.

"Up to now by simply talking about QCopy to our customer base we have sensed a unprecedented level of interest," said Eric Kao, VP, Qsan sales & marketing, "now the killer-app is actually delivered, I expect the momentum for IP SAN (which is red-hot already) to be raised even higher." ...QSAN profile, RAID controller cards

Adaptec Launches New SAS / SATA RAID Adapters

MILPITAS, CA - March 13, 2007 - Adaptec, Inc. today launched a family of SAS / SATA RAID controllers for the PCI Express interface.

The new family consists of five different products and includes 4, 8, 12 and 16 3Gb/s port designs. Adaptec has ensured that its Unified Serial controllers are compatible and fully supported by over 270 third-party systems and devices. All these new controllers come standard with Adaptec's RAID data protection including the protection against the failure of 2 disk drives (RAID 6) and high-performance RAID 5 with hot space (RAID 5EE). Adaptec's data protection suite also includes RAID 1E and Copyback Hot Spare for improved management and the ability to automatically reset a hot spare configuration. Customers can also choose to purchase the optional Snapshot Backup feature that creates a point-in-time copy of an array for improved data backup, management and disaster recovery. ...Adaptec profile

NeoPath Networks gets Ciscoed

SAN JOSE, Calif - March 13, 2007 - Cisco Systems today announced a definitive agreement to acquire NeoPath Networks.

NeoPath's patented SMART virtualization technology and its File Director family of products simplify the management of NAS and other file servers. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. ...Cisco profile, ...NeoPath profile, 411 gone away storage companies

SanDisk Joins Overheating 2.5" SSD Market

MILPITAS, CA - March 13, 2007 - SanDisk Corp today introduced a 32GB 2.5" SATA solid state disk.

Available now to computer oems, - the initial price is $350 for large volume orders. SanDisk's new SSDs offer a sustained read rate of 67MBps and a random read rate of 7,000 IOPS.

Joseph Unsworth, analyst for flash memory at Gartner said "Our research shows hard disk failure is tied for first place with motherboard failure as the leading cause of overall hardware failure in notebooks, with each accounting for 25% to 45% of the total. The higher reliability of SSDs lowers TCO and could be a driver for adoption of SSDs. This is... why Gartner projects global consumption of SSDs in notebooks to leap from about 4 million units in 2007 to 32 million units in 2010." ...SanDisk profile

Editor's comments:-
today's news brings the total number of 2.5" SSD manufacturers to 22, and the total with SATA interfaces to 12.

In fact there are more oems now making 2.5" flash SSDs than hard drives. What does that tell you? It's going to be a big market... yes we've been saying that for years. But also with so many companies competing for market share the price may soon go into free fall. And while we're on that subject... (re free fall, air resistance and terminal velocity.)

Seagate Drops Notebook Drives

SCOTTS VALLEY, Calif - March 12, 2007 - Seagate Technology today announced the worldwide availability of a 7,200 RPM hard drive with free-fall protection for beefed-up laptop durability.

Momentus 7200.2 delivers up to 160GB of capacity and has a SATA interface. The hard drive is also offered with an optional free-fall sensor to help prevent drive damage and data loss upon impact if a laptop PC is dropped. The sensor works by detecting any changes in acceleration equal to the force of gravity, then parking the head off the disc to prevent contact with the platter in a free fall of as little as 8 inches. ...Seagate profile

Editor's comments:-
Hitachi revealed details about its similar ESP drop sensor in 2005. The drop sensor approach is better than nothing, but doesn't get around the unavoidable fact that hard disks can break when dropped. Another approach is that of Olixir Technologies who have marketed repackaged high performance hard drives which can be dropped repeatedly onto a concrete floor from 6 feet and still survive. But solid state disks are inherently even tougher than that because there are no internal moving parts to crash together. That's why they have been used in space ships, helicoptors and missiles. In 2006 In-Stat predicted that half of all mobile computers would use SSDs (instead of hard disks) by 2013. It's not just the ruggedness and better power consumption. A video by Samsung demonstrates the advantages more graphically.

Intel Hears the Wake Up Call - Enters the SSD Market

SANTA CLARA, Calif - March 12, 2007 - Intel Corp - announced today its entry into solid state drives with the Intel Z-U130 Value Solid-State Drive.

Based on NAND flash memory with a USB interface, the Z-U130 is available with upto 8GB capacity and reads data at 28MBps and writes at 20MBps. ...Intel profile

Editor's comments:-
in October 2005 when Intel launched itself into the rackmount storage business I commented that the company was way off target focusing on metal cabinets for hard disk drive stuffers. As one of the world's leading chipmakers it had better come up with an SSD strategy fast - or else lose bigtime.

Intel's new value SSD is the most sensible thing it's done in the storage market in the past decade. Aimed at embedded products and notebook motherboards - it signals that even sleeping giants can eventually hear the wake-up call if it gets loud enough.

Sun's CEO Says You Still Need Tape Backup

Editor:- March 12, 2007 - Sun's CEO Jonathan Schwartz inserts a sneaky argument for tape backup in his most recent blog "Moving A Petabyte of Data".

But I guess what shocked me was the revelation that most US households don't have an internet connection faster than 500kbps. That lower case "b" is "bits" BTW. Schwartz also says that's why Sun is now shipping Solaris on DVDs - instead of just hoping that potential users can just download it. There may be some wishful thinking in this article though - re the need for tape backup.

Organizations that own a lot of data can make arrangements to get faster connections. And it's the rate of change of that Petabyte of data that's important. That's what the online backup system has to contend with to make disk to disk backup viable. But I suspect that Sun may be having second thoughts about the wisdom of buying that big old tape backup company a few years ago. I'm still waiting for some glimmer of an intelligent storage-aware thinking to emerge from the old SPARC dinosaur. I'm not so convinced they will stay in my next update of the 10 biggest storage companies - when I publish the 2010 edition.

NetApp's Storage Software Revenue Grew 49% - Says IDC

FRAMINGHAM, Mass - March 12, 2007 - IDC reported that worldwide storage software revenue was $2.6 billion in Q4 2006, a 3.1% increase over the year ago quarter.

For the full year 2006, storage software revenues totaled $9.8 billion, 8.3% increase over 2005. Network Appliance was the fastest growing company (in the top 5) - having increased software revenue by 49%. ...IDC profile

InfiniBand Adapters Earn Microsoft Qualified Logo

YOKNEAM, ISRAEL – March 12, 2007 – Mellanox Technologies Ltd. today announced the immediate availability of InfiniBand adapters that have passed testing for use in Microsoft OS servers.

The software stack was developed through the OpenFabrics Alliance. With this accomplishment, Mellanox 20Gb/s InfiniBand adapters now carry the "Designed for Windows" logo from Microsoft. ...Mellanox profile, Storage Industry Trade Associations, InfiniBand

Samsung Samples 8 Gigabyte Flash Chip to Phone Makers

Seoul, Korea - March 12, 2007 - Samsung announced today that it has begun shipping samples of an 8GB memory chip to major mobile electronics manufacturers.

It provides twice the capacity and performance of the previous version. Samsung's high-density moviNAND memory solution consists of 4x 16Gb NAND flash memories, a high-speed MultiMediaCard controller and associated firmware. It can store up to 2,000 songs or enough map data to implement GPS and points of interest for the entire western world. Samsung expects the market for moviNAND to reach an accumulated sales volume of $4 billion by 2010. ...Samsung profile

StoneFly Signs Up European iSCSI Distribution

San Diego, CA - March 12, 2007 - StoneFly, Inc. today announced its entrance into the European enterprise storage arena by signing up with JAD Logic Ltd.

JAD Logic will serve as an anchor for the StoneFly channel program across Europe, establishing and supporting the company's overall reseller network in a variety of countries including Ireland, Great Britain, France, Spain, Germany, Netherlands, and Denmark. In the U.K., JAD Logic will maintain exclusive rights to StoneFly IP SAN sales. ...StoneFly profile, ...JAD Logic, UK Storage VARs

Apple and SSD Talk

Editor:- March 9, 2007 - an article in the Taipei Times speculates that Apple may launch a flash SSD based MacBook later this year.

Apple has significant experience with flash storage having replaced hard disks in its newer iPods. The article cites a market report from American Technology Research. An SSD based MacBook from Apple could ignite the SSD market in the same way that "Apple ignited the personal computer revolution in the 1970s with the Apple II".

Survey reports on HA backup

Santa Barbara, California - March 8, 2007 - A series of extensive end user surveys conducted by Peripheral Concepts reveal a major shift in the small and medium IT operational plans for implementing high availability secure businesses.

On the subject of Backup , D2D and VTL... Faster data retrieval, reliability and ease of management are the major reasons for implementing VTL. Half of the respondents estimate their backup window and restore time need improvement, seeking seconds for Recovery Time Objective for part of their data. Some experience 3 times less unsuccessful backups with disks. In spite of a tape business that holds strong, 55% estimate the timeframe for a tape-less operation to be less than 4 years, and 15% believe it will never happen.

On the subject of iSCSI and SAN... 37% of the 5,000 surveyed sites have implemented an iSCSI SAN, compared to less than 20% a year ago. This important market penetration involves all business tiers, challenging the early belief that iSCSI would more specifically attract small and medium sites. 20% plan to purchase an iSCSI capability or extend its utilization in 2007. Concerns on security and performance that initially hindered iSCSI SAN implementations, no longer constitute an obstacle. 100-megabit IP networks gave way to 1 gigabit in 2005 and 2006, and 10 gig networks will prevail in 2007 and 2008.

Asigra joins Managed Service Provider alliance

TORONTO – March 8, 2007 – Asigra today announced that it has joined the MSP (Managed Service Provider) Partners marketing alliance, along with founding members Cisco, Ingram Micro, Intel and Microsoft.

The new vendor alliance was formed to provide solution providers a comprehensive source of MSP education. Members benefit from cohesive new market research, solution provider success stories, and collaborative vendor solutions, all demonstrating the proven path to success in managed services.

See also:- cloud and storage, storage industry trade associations

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