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Access "Two routes to tiered storage"

Published: 30 Oct 2012

Internally tiered storage--a shelf of low-cost disk in an otherwise expensive storage system--is all the rage with storage buyers. To wit: Twenty-five percent of the total number of terabytes shipped in 2004 by storage array maker Engenio was in the form of SATA drives, says Steve Gardner, director of product marketing. This represents a tenfold increase over 2003. But how to engineer that inexpensive tier is a debatable issue among storage vendors. One option is to plug cheap and plentiful SATA drives into an existing Fibre Channel (FC) chassis by way of FC-to-SATA protocol conversion hardware, typically bridge or router chips. Alternatively, a vendor might align with Seagate and adopt its inexpensive FC drives. At this time, the industry seems to be going down the bridge/router path, as exemplified by Sierra Logic's SR-1216 router, which allows an FC disk enclosure to accept SATA drives. As of last month, Dot Hill (supplier to Sun Microsystems), Engenio (supplier to IBM, SGI and StorageTek) and Xyratex (supplier to Network Appliance) were all Sierra Logic ... Access >>>

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