Feature

Behind the Firewall 5

Network Appliance has made a believer out of SAP. We hear that in the past quarter, NetApp has sold filers to more than 100 German SAP accounts. Working with Fujitsu-Siemens, a big EMC reseller, NetApp has done a great job convincing SAP shops that its NAS boxes are easier to manage than SAN arrays and still perform.

@exb

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Optical drive manufacturer Plasmon is coming out with, of all things, a desktop UDO drive. Plasmon had hoped to get it to market sooner, but couldn't keep up with demand from optical library OEMs. Yields are finally up, though, and there are enough drives left over to fulfill other channels. One possible customer is an airline looking for durable digital media to store in-flight movies. More generically, the drive will be targeted at sites that have filled their libraries without leaving extra slots to load in offline cartridges.
@exe

Is Cisco giving away product? The buzz on Wall Street around Cisco's recent lackluster storage revenue and possible exit from the market couldn't be further from the truth. Although the networking giant's storage revenue dipped 2% from last quarter, to around $39.8 million, it continues to gain market share. So what's up with the revenue? Sources say Cisco is using its customer loyalty program to push out its storage area network (SAN) switches. Like a frequent-flier program, Cisco customers earn a certain amount of points to spend on certain Cisco gear, including its SAN switches. Sources also say Cisco is buying back its competitors' gear and replacing it with its own, another explanation for its market share increase with no revenue to show for it.

Brocade has won deals with Hewlett-Packard and IBM for an integrated switch in their respective blade server chassis, but the firm isn't resting on its laurels. According to one exec, Brocade has deals on the table with all the blade server vendors and "believes we will win every one of them." The remaining prize in the blade server market is, of course, Sun Microsystems.

Several storage industry executives are calling StorageTek's purchase of Storability Software's Global Storage Manager, which centralizes the view and management of a company's storage infrastructure, "a steal and a spectacular giveaway." Venture capitalists, including Battery Ventures, Lee Munder Venture Partners, Sprout Group and Technology Partners, happily poured at least $42 million into Storability's coffers; in total, Storability may have received nearly $65 million. StorageTek didn't disclose the financial details behind the acquisition, except to say that it was an asset purchase transaction. According to Mark Lewis, EMC's executive VP of open-software operations, StorageTek paid $17 million. Another industry insider said StorageTek paid $10 million for all of Storability's assets, software license agreements and 30 customer contracts. The storage resource management software market is expected to reach $820 million by 2008, a market analyst at IDC says.

Was gay (as in joyful) Paris not so gay anymore? We hear that French virtual tape library company Neartek has quietly shut down its French operations and moved to Westborough, MA.

Is e-mail archiver Zantaz getting too cool for small companies? An IT manager at a small Midwestern bank, who was recently evaluating e-mail archiving software vendors, had to take Zantaz out of the running because the bank "only had 50 users and Zantaz said it doesn't work with companies with less than 100 [users]." Seems that with its recent success, Zantaz may have forgotten about the "S" in small-to medium-sized businesses.

Got dirt? Go ahead and send it to us at btf@storagemagazine.com. We solemnly swear not to reveal your name, or who you work for.

This was first published in December 2004

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