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Storage news - 2008, November week 1

Curtiss-Wright Ships Faster XMC / PMC SSDs

Leesburg, VA - November 5, 2008 - Curtiss-Wright Controls Embedded Computing has announced 2 new rugged flash SSDs in XMC and PMC form factors with upto 32GB capacity.

Each card contains 2 independent SATA SSDs with upto 30MB/s throughput. For maximum throughput (50MB/s) the 2 drives can be run in RAID 0 mode. Pricing starts at $2,495, and it's available in various air / conduction cooled variants and consumes between less than 6W. Curtiss-Wright, Military & Rugged Storage

Condre Markets APPLE Video Optimized RAID

Minneapolis, MN - November 5 , 2008 - Condre Storage, Inc. is selling a new APPLE optimized AV RAID - the Bullet.

Built on proven technology with a 4Gb Fibre Channel front end and SAS/SATA drives. The Bullet AV RAID scales up to 64TB capacity and is capable of up to 3 streams of (10 bit), 1080, Uncompressed HD video. MSRP is $11,999 for 12TB of Fibre Channel to SATA storage which includes 1 year next business day on site support.

"Condre Storage is excited by this unique offering for the APPLE video market. The Bullet is an incredibly fast RAID, and with 2 boxes striped together we've done over 8 streams of 10 bit, 1080/HD video", according to Condre Storage President Denny Maetzold. "Condre is proud to have a new and outstanding RAID product to complement our existing RAID product offerings. It allows our customers to offer their end users a complete video storage solution." ...Condre Storage profile, Storage VARs, Video - editor mentions on

Petite SSD Chip Seeks Reliable Rugged Assignments

Austin, Texas - November 5 , 2008 - Austin Semiconductor, Inc. announces a smaller, more compact 7.5 cm3 (31mm sq x 7.8mm max height) ruggedized SSD.

The SLC flash SSD offers upto 16GB capacity, has an IDE, PIO/4 interface, and MTBF of more than 2 million hours. and is designed for harsh environment operation.

"Our unique SSD is designed for use in low power, ruggedized environments. The device is intended for direct board mounting and has redundant board interconnects to increase the overall product reliability, which makes it ideal for handheld applications," says Frank Muscolino, President of Austin Semiconductor. ...Austin Semiconductor profile

Just Another Online Backup Service

Montreal, Canada - November 5 , 2008 - Copernic Inc. today announced the availability of its new online backup service for individual PC users.

This announcement is the result of a partnership with SOS Online Backup. Pricing starts at $29.95 / year for 5GB backup size and ranges upto $149.95. ...Copernic profile

Editor's comments:-
an article by Atempo Building an Online Backup Business: A Service Provider's Survival Guide pdf) says there are now about 1,400 online backup service companies now in the market.

You can see my own editor's pick here. We've published a directory of these companies since 2000 and it's increasingly difficult finding something new or interesting to say about this market.

A problem for online backup companies targeting SMBs and consumers is that most people in those segments don't do regular backups - even though they are most vulnerable. (In corporates - there is usually someone else worrying about the backup problem - which provides a safety net.)

Another problem is that SMB online backup isn't an attractive market from the business point of view - because the marketing costs of acquiring new customers are very similar to the annual revenue from a customer. So vendors don't make money unless the customer uses the service for years - or unless there is some other cross selling opportunity available. That's why some vendors offer their vanilla backup services free - as a honeytrap - but charge for the chocolate strawberry flavored serious editions. Analyzing that last sentence probably means I need to break for a little snack.

SanDisk Publishes Whitepaper on SSD Virtual RPM

Editor:- November 5 , 2008 - SanDisk has published a new white paper on the subject of Virtual RPM for flash SSDs.

This is apparently aimed at people who have been trapped in a stasis field for the past several years and who are still making unrealistic SSD vs HDD IOPS comparisons.

I guess the target audience for this article must include the SSD product marketers at SanDisk - because if you look at the table which lists where flash SSD IOPS are today - and where they are heading in the future - you'll see some dismally small figures which bear no relationship to best of breed products.

So you can probably safely ignore a press release issued by the company today which promises faster devices next year.

In many ways SanDisk would have made an ideal acquisition for Samsung - because that's another consumer SSD company who talks a lot about "enterprise" products - but appears to be in the slow lane when it comes to delivering hard performance metrics for fast SSDs. the article, ...SanDisk profile, Z's Laws - Predicting Future Flash SSD Performance

Oxford Semi Dangles DAS Dongles

MilpitasCalif. - November 4 , 2008 - Oxford Semiconductor today unveiled 2 new DAS security encryption chips.

Aimed at storage oems - the OXUS931SE and OXUFS936DSE feature an embedded hardware encryption engine enabling real time encryption with no loading on the host PC.

The OXUFS936DSE supports FireWire, USB and eSATA interfaces and 2 directly connected SATA disks. In addition, the device offers a range of LCD and LED user interfaces that are supported by the flexible software framework, greatly enhancing its capacity for product differentiation.

The OXUS931SE is aimed at the consumer who needs low cost, single-drive secure storage. In a traditional implementation, the OXUS931SE acts as a high performance bridge from USB2.0 or eSATA ports to a SATA hard disk drive in an external storage box supporting all current PC and Mac platforms. And, because of the OXUS931SE's high performance, it can also be implemented as a internal security dongle between a SATA port on the system motherboard and any internal SATA disk drive without any loss of throughput, for a fast and easy upgrade to a secure information system. ...Oxford Semiconductor profile, Storage Security

Sonnet Storage Starred in All-Starr Summer Tour

Irvine Calif. - November 4 , 2008 - Sonnet Technologies today announced that Ringo Starr and his 10th All-Starr band used two Fusion R400Q rackmount storage systems to capture concert audio for their 31-date summer tour, which concluded Aug. 2 at the Greek Theater in Los Angeles.
The Fusion R400Q systems provided 2TB of mirrored storage for the 64 tracks of audio recorded to a Pro Tools|HD 2 Accel during each All-Starr concert and enabled sound engineers to use Digidesign Virtual Soundcheck workflow to refine live performance console settings by using a multitrack Pro Tools session rather than actual band members. Audio recorded to the Fusion R400Qs will be preserved for archival purposes and also serve as a resource for CDs, DVDs, and Web releases.

"The R400Q lived up to its reputation as a solid storage solution well-suited to the rigors of tour recording and travel," said Brian Bavido, Front of House engineer for the All-Starr tour.
click to read about Cock's karaoke on
"We covered a lot of ground in the United States and Canada and made our way over many bad roads, and not once did I need to reseat a drive or cable. The system was very transparent on tour, performing without a hitch throughout each show, and its 1U design proved convenient in use while occupying very little rack and transportation space." ...Sonnet profile, Rackmount Storage, Audio - editor mentions on Reports Top Searches

Editor:- November 4 , 2008 - today updated its monthly list of the top articles and subjects viewed by storage searchers in October.

Overall site site pageviews were 23% higher than the year ago period. Pageviews for the top 5 most popular articles grew 56%. ...see market research page

New Service Takes Pain Out of Archiving Camcorder Hard Drives

Duluth, GA - November 3, 2008 - The Photo Archival Company has launched a new service to help users archive video trapped inside today's generation of no-tape camcorders that record to internal hard drive or flash memory.

The Photo Archival Company is able to preserve video footage directly from the customer's tapeless camcorder, external USB hard drive or flash memory to produce long-lasting DVDs or Blu-ray Discs. This solves the practical problem faced by users of high capacity camcorders that when the disk is full - they may be facing 40 to 120 hours of elapsed time to get the data off the camera and archived onto optical media.

"The recurring theme from a typical customer is that it is impractical for them to archive their digital footage first hand," said Charles Laughlin, President and founder of The Photo Archival Company. "For the average household, it can be a daunting task to spend the necessary time to tend to the successful creation of several DVDs or Blu-ray Discs just to continue filming." ...Photo Archival Company, Storage Services

Editor's comments:-
an alternative solution - if you don't want to waste days uploading data and burning DVDs yourself - is to train the starlets of your home movies to do this for you. Of course it works better if they are children - rather than dogs. (Unless Cesar has already done this in an episode I missed.)

WD Launches HD TV Router

LAKE FOREST, Calif. - November 3, 2008 - WD today introduced its TV Media Player.

The WD TV HD Media Player (MSRP $129.99 ) enables consumers to easily access content on up to 2 USB drives on their HDTV . ...Western Digital profile, Routers

Survey Reveals Low Impact of the Term - "Unified Storage"

CAMPBELL, Calif. - November 3, 2008 - "Unified Storage" has yet to make an impact on IT decision makers, with few even able to define what it stands for and even less aware of the business benefits of implementation, according to a survey conducted at recent storage events by ONStor.

The survey was conducted among the 1,600 IT and business decision makers representing four continents and over 37 countries who attended the Shows, at which only 58% of those questioned were familiar with the term Unified Storage.

Unified storage has been defined as a single integrated storage infrastructure that functions as a unification engine to simultaneously support Fibre Channel, IP SAN and NAS data formats.

Despite this, of the 50% who said they could define it, 43% thought it referred to virtualised storage and 56% believed it was a combination of back up and storage.

Narayan Venkat, VP, Corporate Marketing at ONStor, stated: "What is absolutely clear from these top line survey findings is that the market needs more education on the benefits of unified storage, and that is where the vendor community needs to join forces with analysts to drive this message home. For our part we are ensuring we are including this subject each and every time we meet the analyst community as well as the critical end user market. When we meet with customers and prospects we take the time to educate them on the benefits of a unified storage solution, and this goes from initial meetings with prospects to our existing client training programmes." ...ONStor profile, Megabyte's Storage Dictionary

Editor's comments:-
I can confirm that "unified storage" (which is cited on 23 pages here on the mouse site) is not a hot term with storage searchers - accounting for zero searches in October.

If you Google "Unified Storage" you'll discover that it occurs 45x less frequently than iSCSI.

Is such a term -(which has made so little impact in the 7 years since it was first mentioned on these news pages by LeftHand Networks) worth the precious bytes it occupies in your brain?

Seagate Launches Greener 15K RPM HDDs

SCOTTS VALLEY, Calif. - November 3, 2008 - Seagate today introduced the Savvio 15K.2 - a new 15K RPM 2.5" 6Gb/s SAS hard drive.

Shipping next month, capacity options include 146GB and 73GB. Seagate claims up to 70% electrical power reduction compared with 3.5" hard drives. ...Seagate profile, SAS Storage

New White Paper on Managing Flash SSD Operating Life

Editor:- November 3, 2008 - SiliconSystems has published a new white paper - Eliminating Unscheduled Downtime by Forecasting Useable Flash SSD Life.

This describes its SISMART technology. Although many headlines about SSDs are concerned with capacity, price or speed - articles related to storage reliability are often among the top 5 subjects viewed by readers - and also account for a high proportion of reader questions. the article, ...SiliconSystems profile

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