Best data storage products | 2012 Products of the Year winners

Best data storage products of 2012

Storage magazine's/'s 2012 Products of the Year competition recognizes the best data storage products in six categories.

As we have for the previous 10 years, the editors of Storage magazine and, more than ably assisted by a panel of consultants, analysts and users, have picked what we feel are the best data storage products of 2012.

And each year, as we study the entries submitted to our storage Products of the Year awards program, we are reminded of the tremendous amount of innovation and technical achievement demonstrated by the scores of storage products that were either fresh out of the gate in 2012 or established products that received significant enhancements.

This year, we chose 52 finalists from more than 160 entries, and eventually selected 14 as 2012's best data storage products. All the enterprise storage products were judged based on innovation, performance, ease of integration into an environment, ease of use and manageability, functionality and value.

Congratulations to all our 2012 Products of the Year award winners.

About the Storage magazine/ Products of the Year

Storage magazine and invited data storage product companies to nominate new or enhanced products for the 2012 Products of the Year awards. For previously available products, the upgrade must have incorporated significant new features. Products could be submitted in the following six categories: backup and disaster recovery software and services, backup hardware, networking equipment, storage management tools, storage systems and storage system software.

Products were judged by a panel of users, analysts, consultants, and Storage magazine and editors. Products were rated based on innovation, performance, ease of integration into environment, ease of use and manageability, functionality and value.

Click on each of the blue highlighted category titles below to find out the winners.

Table of contents:


This 2012 Products of the Year category covers backup and DR software, cloud backup and recovery services, DR, snapshot and replication, electronic vaulting and archivers.

Category winners include a hypervisor-based replication product, an agentless software platform for virtual server data protection and a backup software platform with automated data protection.


The data backup hardware 2012 Products of the Year category covers tape libraries, tape drives, backup storage media, disk backup targets, virtual tape libraries, data deduplication devices and gateway appliances for cloud backup.

The three top choices include a product that creates virtual point-in-time copies of production data, a cloud storage gateway and a deduplicating backup target device that can encrypt backup data.


The network equipment category covers switches, host bus adapters, network interface cards, security devices, converged network adapters and virtual I/O products. This year, only one award is presented in the networking equipment category.


The Storage magazine/ 2012 Products of the Year storage management tool category covers storage resource management and SAN management software, performance monitoring, configuration management and provisioning. This year, we're presenting only one storage management tools award.


The enterprise storage systems category covers Fibre Channel and iSCSI SANs, network-attached storage, multiprotocol systems, direct-attached storage, hard disk drives, solid-state storage, disk controllers, caching appliances, storage virtualization appliances and cloud storage gateway appliances.

This year's storage systems category winners are a multiprotocol array that can be used as an all-flash system, a storage system that delivers quality of service and a flash memory array.


The enterprise storage system software 2012 Products of the Year category covers file systems, volume management, storage virtualization software, security software, storage optimization applications and data reduction.

Winning selections in the storage system software category include the latest version of Microsoft's server OS, a product that reduces virtual desktop infrastructure requirements and a server-based flash caching product.


Fifty-two enterprise storage products in six categories stood out among the hundreds of entries for the Storage magazine/ 2012 Products of the Year because they demonstrated technical innovation and offered solid value. Finalists represent all constituencies of the data storage market, with approximately one-third of them among the ranks of storage newcomers/startups and the rest representing firmly established storage software and hardware companies.