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storage news - 2008, April week 1

Megabyte's selection of storage news
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the Fastest SSDs
the Top 10 SSD OEMs
the Flash SSD Performance Roadmap
Are MLC SSDs Safe in Enterprise Apps?
RAM versus Flash SSDs - which is Best?
SSD Myths and Legends - "write endurance"
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Dot Hill Enters SAS Market

ORLANDO, Fla - April 7, 2008 - Dot Hill Systems. today launched its first Serial Attached SCSI RAID storage solution.

Featuring a 12-drive 2U form factor, the 2530 supports up to 56 low cost, high capacity SAS and SATA disk drives. Additionally, the product features a number of data protection services, such as snapshot and volume copy.

Pillar's Petabyte Arrays are 99.999% Available

San Jose, Calif. - April 7, 2008 - Pillar Data Systems today announced availability of the Pillar Axiom 500MC - a mission critical storage system .

The Pillar Axiom 500MC delivers up to 192GB of cache, with the ability to scale capacity to 1.6 petabytes. The system supports both fibre channel and SATA disk drives. Pillar guarantees 99.999% availability.

See also:- this way to the petabyte SSD

Seagate and PMC-Sierra announce 6Gb/s SAS interoperability

SANTA CLARA, Calif - April 7, 2008 - PMC-Sierra. and Seagate Technology today announced interoperability between PMC-Sierra's end-to-end 6Gb/s SAS chipset and Seagate's early development 6Gb/s SAS HDDs.

Travis Karr, VP of marketing at PMC-Sierra said "This achievement provides server and storage system OEMs with the confidence that PMC-Sierra and Seagate products will work together seamlessly in a SAS-2 eco-system."

STEC Ships 4Gbps ZeusIOPS Flash SSDs

ORLANDO, FL - April 7, 2008 - STEC announced the volume availability of its first 4Gbps Fibre Cannel compatible ZeusIOPS flash SSDs - which are being shown this week at Storage Networking World.

The Zeus-IOPS range of 2.5" and 3.5" flash SSDs are available in capacities from 18GB up to 512GB. ...STEC profile, SAN

Editor's comments:-
it's 2 years since the first shipments of 4Gbps FC storage products. Originally conceived as an interface for hard disk arrays - this kind of throughput (and more) will soon be needed to get the most performance out of the fastest 3.5" SSDs.

I expect flash SSD throughput and IOPs to more than double every year in the period from 2007 to 2012. Consistent with that view (which is based on looking at what happens when new architectures are combined with process improvements) gigabyte per second 3.5" SSDs are only 2-3 years away.

See also:- 2.5" PCIe SSDs, memory channel SSDs

AMD Announces Design Kit for Storage Bridge 2.0

ORLANDO, FL - April 7, 2008 - At the Storage Networking World conference AMD announced availability of the first Reference Design Kit for the SBB 2.0 specification based on the AMD Athlon processor.

AMD expects this will help storage vendors deliver low power, high performance, entry-level networked storage systems while helping reduce time-to-market. AMD also today announced 3 new, low power AMD Athlon dual-core processors for embedded system designs.

Seagate Delivers First Terabyte SAS HDD

ORLANDO, Fla - April 7, 2008 - Seagate today announced it has begun worldwide shipment of its first terabyte SAS hard drive.

The Barracuda ES.2 drives spin at 7,200 RPM, have an unrecoverable error rate that is 10x better than desktop class drives and a 1.2 million hour MTBF at full 24 x 7 data availability.

Western Digital Plans $500 million Purchase of WDC

LAKE FOREST, Calif - April 3, 2008 - Western Digital. (NYSE: WDC) today announced authorization of a $500 million increase in its common stock repurchase program.

"We continue to believe that Western Digital's stock is a compelling investment, based on our strengthened business model, our strategy and the industry's strong growth prospects," said John Coyne, WD president and CEO.

"Our sustained strong performance continues to generate substantial free cash flow even while we continue to invest in our technology, operations and integration of the recently-acquired Komag media operations into our business. (That was a $1 billion acquisition - ed.) The additional authorization reflects our confidence in the company's financial strength, its future and our commitment to enhancing shareholder value."

Xyratex Launches 2U Rack for 2.5" Drives

HAVANT, UK - April 2, 2008 - Xyratex today announced the OneStor SP1224s - a 2U, 24 drive storage system for 2.5" drives.

It's the 2nd member of the OneStor ESP family with common Field Replaceable Units and SBB 2.0 compatibility – enabling OEMs to reduce both product ramp-up time and inventory costs for spares.

Wasabi Improves RAID Adapter Support in iSCSI OS

Norfolk, Virginia - April 2, 2008 - Wasabi Systems today released v4.1 of its network storage operating system, Wasabi Storage Builder for iSCSI SAN.

Some of the new features include:- support for RAID 6, 60 for most current LSI, Intel, SuperMicro and 3ware SAS / SATA RAID controllers, including improved logging and error recovery capability and full support for LSI 1078. Extended reliability options for nested RAID levels in addition to those offered by the RAID controller, including RAID 61, 51.

Wasabi Storage Builder v4.1 provides full support for virtualized server environments using both VMware and Virtual Iron products, and the ability to use the Wasabi Storage Builder target to boot diskless servers, workstations or clients using WinBoot or NetBoot products from emBoot Inc. MSRP starts at $1,695.

Texas Memory Systems Celebrates 30 Years Making SSDs

HOUSTON, TEXAS - April 2, 2008 - Texas Memory Systems today announced that it is celebrating its 30th year in business.

The company was founded in 1978 to supply high performance computer memory products to the energy industry. 30 years later, Texas Memory Systems is the leading manufacturer of rackmount SSDs for business enterprises.

"Many companies have come and gone in the SSD business over the last 30 years, so it's not surprising that enterprises take a supplier's longevity into account when considering technology partners. Companies need strategic relationships with vendors that are in it for the long haul," said Mike Karp, senior analyst and storage practice leader at Enterprise Management Associates. "With Texas Memory Systems, innovative products and solid support have resulted in staying power."

Since 1978, the cost of a gigabyte of RAM SSD has dropped from $1 million down to $500 and the past 30 years have seen marked changes in price, performance, and usage of SSDs.

In 1978, Texas Memory Systems introduced a 16 kilobyte RAM-based solid state disk system designed to accelerate field seismic data acquisition for oil companies. Oil prices dropped to $8 a barrel in the 1980s resulting in a steep drop in industry spending encouraging TMS to expand its reach into Government sectors with digital signal processors that incorporated solid state disk to boost performance.

Advances in computing power, and the expansion of the digital economy have driven increased demand by enterprise applications for high performance storage. Because of this shift, in 2000, TMS introduced the RamSan line of solid state disk systems to accelerate commercial applications for the Enterprise. Today, RamSan systems are the dominant enterprise solid state disk used by major financial exchanges, banks, e-commerce and telecommunications firms across the world. The company's solid state disk business has averaged over 40% growth per year for each of the last three years.

"Everyone at Texas Memory Systems is now firmly focused on the next 30 years," said Woody Hutsell, executive VP at TMS. "Demand for solid state systems is growing rapidly as organizations look for faster software performance to handle more users and transactions. On the supply side, the cost of RAM and Flash components has fallen and hard disk drive performance has never kept pace with increasing CPU performance. The next 30 years look very promising."

Nimbus Makes SSD Acceleration a Breeze

San Francisco, CA - April 2, 2008 - Nimbus Data Systems today unveiled its Breeze Hybrid series of multi-protocol 10GbE IP storage systems.

Nimbus claims this offers 2.5x the throughput and 75% lower cost than a 4Gbps Fibre Channel SAN. The Breeze H-series runs Nimbus' HALO storage operating system which combines storage virtualization and advanced data protection and supports an SSD acceleration option.

Editor's comments:-
Nimbus carries on the torch of a network storage operating system - which under the name "Cloudbreak" - was first developed by Nimbus's founder at TrueSAN Networks .

That kind of groundwork thinking may help to make an SSD work economically as part of a hybrid HDD-SSD accelerated array - while avoiding the traditional high costs of manual setup and tuning. Like space-time - cost is relativistic and depends if you're in the right dimension. A fully-configured Breeze MH860 - with all software, 34TB of storage, and 64GB of mirrored SSD starts under $120,000.

the Top 10 SSD OEMs in Q1 2008

Editor:- April 2, 2008 - today published the 4th edition of - "the Top 10 Solid State Disk OEMs."

Covering the quarter ending March 31, 2008 - the article also looks at market milestones and comments on changes since the earlier quarters.

Inevitably - over 60 SSD oems couldn't make it into the top 10 SSD list (and that includes enterprise rackmount SSD wannabe EMC which lay just outside at #11.)

If you're choosing SSD suppliers or strategic partners - this is the must-see predictive list of the top companies that matter - based on hundreds of thousands of readers searching for SSD content on the site rated most highly by SSD companies themselves. the article Reports NAS on the Rise

Editor:- April 1, 2008 - today updated its monthly list of the top subjects viewed by storage searchers in March.

The top 5 subjects were:-

(1) - Disk to disk backup - no change
(2) - Solid state disks - up 1 place
(3) - NAS - up 4 places
(4) - Hard drives - down 2 places
(5) - 2.5 inch SSDs - down 1 place

Overall pageviews grew 10% compared to the year ago period. For marketers who are interested in SEO - the top incoming search word "SSD" occurred 4x more often than in the year ago period. More info about the top 20 subjects and articles can be viewed on the market research page

Index Engines Names New VP of Sales

Holmdel, NJ - April 1, 2008 - Index Engines today announced the appointment of Tony Fusarelli as VP of Sales.

Fusarelli is a seasoned executive with over 25 years of experiencey.

Recently, Fusarelli served as VP of sales for Tacit Networks, which was purchased by Packeteer as a result of its success. Prior to Tacit Networks Fusarelli was VP of Sales at Lumeta where he was responsible for tripling the company's revenue in less than 2 years. Fusarelli has also held executive sales positions at Visara International, General Signal Networks and INRANGE Technologies.

AmeriVault is 10 Years Old

Waltham MA - April 1, 2008 - Today, AmeriVault is celebrating its 10th year in remote online data backup, offsite storage, and recovery services.

"I'm extraordinarily proud of where we've come and what we've accomplished," said Bud Stoddard, President and CEO of AmeriVault.

In 1998, AmeriVault pioneered disk-based online backup, founded on the idea that backup needs to be automatically secured offsite with the highest reliability. Today AmeriVault also offers advanced recovery services for clients that cannot withstand extended outages in the event of a disaster, virus, or crash. Traditionally, the recovery process following a disaster or outage can take several days and requires substantial investment in labor. AmeriVault's services can help clients resume operations faster than most other remote recovery strategies.

Editor's comments:-
that says something about the age of the whole online backup and storage market too. We created a directory for this topic in March 2000. It looked a bit like this - and was quaintly labeled "Edrives" but the term never caught on.

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