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Editor:- the top news story in my view this week was the fact that PCIe SSDs had entered the top 10 subjects viewed by's readers. That was one of many milestones in SSD market history which showed that users who needed apps acceleration would not be tied to the hard disk baggage of the past (such as form factors and interfaces) when it came to the serious issue of looking at best value for money in SSD acceleration.
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Storage news - 2008, December week 1

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I'm too old to do that
chimney stunt this year .
... SSD news
the Fastest SSDs
the Top 10 SSD Companies
Data Recovery for flash SSDs
SSDs speed up Santa's Naughty / Nice Lists
will Santa be able to land at London-Gatwick airport this Christmas?
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Idealstor Releases iBac VIP for VMware Virtual Server Backups
Gaithersburg, MD - December 3, 2008 - Idealstor announced today the release of an enterprise backup solution for VMware virtual servers.

image shows Megabyte pouring clone juice onto his garden - click here for the backup software page
backup software
iBac Virtual Infrastructure Proxy is licensed per ESX server regardless of the number of virtual machines or processors. This enables users to quickly add new VMs without having to worry about purchasing additional backup agents for each virtual server. iBac VIP ties into the VCB framework provided by VMware. Because of this, the load from running backups is removed from the ESX server and offloaded to a dedicated 2003 backup server, such as the Idealstor Backup Appliance.

"We released iBac in 2005 with the goal of offering an easy to use yet robust backup application for Windows servers", said Nandan Arora, chief technical officer at Idealstor. "Over the years our clients have increasingly migrated to VMware and reached out to us to help them with their virtual server backups. Rather than simply modifying our existing software for use with VMware like most software companies have done, we developed VIP from the ground up with the unique requirements of VMware in mind."

VIP can backup data residing on a fibre channel or iSCSI SAN or can backup data directly from the ESX server over the LAN. VIP offers a simple user interface that provides scheduling, logging email reporting and the ability to backup multiple ESX servers on the LAN or in remote data centers.

Intel and Hitachi GST Announce Plans for SAS flash SSDs

click to see directory of SAS SSD companies
SAN JOSE , Calif - December 2, 2008 - Intel and Hitachi GST today announced plans to jointly develop and deliver SAS and Fibre Channel high IOPS enterprise-class flash SSDs.

The new SSDs, expected to ship in 2010 will be branded and exclusively sold and supported by Hitachi GST and use Intel NAND flash memory and SSD technology.

Editor's comments:-
this marks Hitachi GST's entry in the SSD market. If you can't wait till 2010 for SAS SSDs - our SSD Guide lists RunCore, Solid Access Technologies and STEC as current sources.

Santa Announces Green Server SSD Initiative

North Pole - December 2, 2008 - Texas Memory Systems and Santa today announced an initiative to replace all monolithic RAID storage at the North Pole with energy efficient and super fast solid state disks by the end of 2009.

This proactive move is expected to reduce the energy required to process the "Naughty or Nice" lists by up to 50%. the case study, Green Storage - Trends and Predictions

Editor's comments:-
TMS also published today a case study with an online retailer featured in the Oprah Winfrey Show in November. Anticipating that their web site would get slammed by viewers - the CTO turned to a VAR who suggested they install a fast RAM SSD - the RamSan-400 to quickly upgrade their server performance.

Brocade Enhances SAN Monitoring

SAN JOSE, Calif. - December 2, 2008 - Brocade today announced enhancements to its Network Monitoring Service.

Brocade NMS now provides 24×7 expert end-to-end monitoring about the health and status of data center fabrics to help maximize network efficiency, availability, and uptime. Moreover, Brocade NMS provides organizations with valuable information and rules-based business intelligence to maximize application availability and optimize data center resources. , storage services, storage reliability

Infortrend Reduces RAID Performance Hit from Failed Data Links published the world's 1st online RAID directory (wit daily updates)  in 1998 - we have   articles, comment and list of hundreds of RAID  oems
RAID systems
SAN JOSE, Calif. - December 2, 2008 - Infortrend today announced a new technology - "Dynamic Logical Drive Assignment" which boosts R/W performance in dual-controller RAID subsystems when a data path has failed.

Typically, failed data links lead to performance degradation because the storage controller has to re-direct the I/Os targeting the logical drive whose primary data path is broken. Infortrend now supplies all its EonStor dual-controller arrays with the "Dynamic LD Assignment" technology to improve performance by eliminating the re-rerouting overhead. Once the failure is identified and corrected, optimal system performance can be immediately restored. The "Dynamic LD Assignment" now comes with all EonStor Fibre-, SAS-, and iSCSI-host redundant-controller models using Firmware ver.3.64J or later.

PCI Express SSDs Enter Top 10 Storage Searches

Editor:- December 1, 2008 - today updated its monthly list of the top articles and subjects viewed by storage searchers in November.

Pageviews for the top 5 most popular articles (all related to the subject of SSDs) grew 64% compared to a year ago.

The directory page for PCI Express SSDs entered the top 10 subjects viewed by readers for the 1st time. market research

Job Uncertainty Increases Risks of Illegal Data Migrations

Editor:- December 1, 2008 - Cyber-Ark has published results of a recent international IT security survey called - the Global Recession and its Effect on Work Ethics (pdf).

50% of US responders and 27% in the UK said they would be willing to work 80 hours a week if it meant they could keep their jobs. Nevertheless, there is a risk that workers are using their IT privilege access rights to conspire behind their bosses' backs to download vital, useful and competitive information to take with them if and when they get the push.

56% of workers surveyed admitted to being worried about losing their jobs. Alarmingly, in preparation, more than half have already downloaded competitive corporate data and plan to use the information as a negotiating tool to secure their next post. Top of the list of desirable information is the customer and contact databases, with plans and proposals, product information, and access/password codes all proving popular choices.

Memory sticks are the smallest, easiest, cheapest and least traceable method of downloading huge amounts of data, which is why this is often considered the "weapon of choice". Other methods were photocopying, emailing, CDs, online encrypted storage websites, smartphones, DVDs, cameras, iPods etc. the article (pdf), Storage Security

today's storage news

SSD Market Missed Opportunities in 2008?
Editor:- December 9, 2008 - overall pageviews on in the past several weeks are at all-time historic high levels and are 37% higher than the year ago period.

It's very gratifying for me as an editor to find that so many of you find the SSD related articles and buyers guides so useful.

The most popular article in recent weeks has been Looking Ahead to the 2009 SSD Market (on our home page). I've tended to focus on the positive market developments in that particular article.

But there have been some big missed opportunities in the SSD market - in 2008 too. In the interests of balance I've listed them here.
  • The abysmally bad design integration of flash SSDs in most notebooks - which completely miss the true potential of this technology described in my SSD market model. The result has been a wave of yawn inducing products which you would not rush out to buy if your best friend had just bought one. Whether this has been due to a lack of imagination by notebook product marketers and designers - or simply the need to rush out designs which tick the SSD box - I don't know. But I haven't yet seen an SSD notebook I would actually buy myself. Products on offer at the moment are as inviting as a battery operated engine in an offroad 4x4 car.
  • Several years ago - the big hard disk makers paid out to settle class action suits related to misleading claims about capacity. I expect that the flash SSD market will be fertile ground for future performance-related lawsuits from oems and users.

    I analyzed the issues in Can you trust flash SSD specs & benchmarks? From my discussions about this subject - it seems that the root causes lie more in vendor naivety rather than duplicity. But that's little consolation. The industry needs to get its act together.

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